It seems like we are forever looking for a new way to level up in the health industry. A constant quest in the pursuit of optimal health and longevity. One of the ways this is happening right now is with the appearance of apple cider vinegar. Gone are the days of it only being used as a household cleaner or a pickling agent to preserve foods over the winter. Nowadays, apple cider vinegar is being promoted as a magical substance that can do everything from lower blood sugar levels to cure smelly feet. That’s a pretty tall order for just one product! Can it really do all of these things? Let’s find out!
It is best to begin by understanding exactly what apple cider vinegar is and how it is made so that we can better understand what it can do for our body.
Apple cider vinegar is a vinegar that is made from fermented apple juice. Similar to how alcohol is made -apple cider vinegar is created when bacteria and yeast are added to the fermented liquid. This process converts sugar into alcohol. But it doesn’t end there! Then the alcohol is converted into vinegar with acid-forming bacteria. This secondary process is what gives the apple cider vinegar its sour taste. In fact, vinegar or “vinegre” as it is called in French, literally comes from the words “vin aigre” which means sour wine. If this breakdown doesn’t sound very palatable, you’d be right. It’s terribly acidic tasting and can’t be drunk straight from the bottle. Not just because of the taste, though, because it would literally burn your skin and the lining of your mouth and throat! So to ingest apple cider vinegar correctly, you must mix one or maximum two, spoonful’s into a glass of water, and mix it so that it dilutes. Typically, it is recommended to drink it right before a meal.
Apple cider vinegar claims to have many health benefits, including weight loss, reduced cholesterol, lowered blood sugar levels. Let’s take a more in-depth look into these claims and see if indeed they are as healthy as they claim to be. However, please remember that using apple cider vinegar can be different for everyone. It is an acidic substance that should be consumed with caution.
The Many Benefits to Consuming Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is known to increase satiety. By ingesting it diluted in water right before a meal, it has the opportunity to work its magic before you eat. Then when you do, it makes you feel fuller so that you eat less and consume fewer calories. Thereby helping with weight management.
Drinking apple cider vinegar will give an acetic boost to your system. This means that it will boost your immune system, help to control blood pressure, and unclog arteries. It has also been known to give an increase in blood flow to the colon. Think of it as a deep cleanse to the entire system.
Manages blood sugar
Diabetics are constantly trying to adjust and maintain their insulin levels. Apple cider vinegar can help with this because it lowers blood sugar almost immediately, which is crucial. It has also been proven to improve insulin sensitivity when consuming high carb meals.
Lower risk of heart disease
Heart disease is the world’s leading cause of death. Fortunately, the acetic acid in apple cider vinegar has been shown to improve heart health by lowering cholesterol levels. This is important because high levels of bad cholesterol are known to cause heart attacks. Apple cider vinegar has also been shown to improve blood pressure levels. Keeping your blood pressure stable is crucial to reduce the risk of strokes and heart disease.
Improves Skin Health
While you should never put apple cider vinegar directly on your skin (as it will burn it significantly). Using skin products like a toner that has apple cider vinegar as an ingredient can be very advantageous. It can help clear skin up and reduce the instances of acne.
Halitosis is a common problem, and not one that is easily solved. However, apple cider vinegar can help. Acetic acid actually kills bacteria and viruses that cause bad breath. Don’t use it as a mouthwash, though, as it will ruin the enamel on your teeth. Same as before, simply scoop one to two tablespoons into a glass of water, mix and drink.
Less or More Controlled Heartburn
If you’ve ever had that burning sensation of acid reflux or heartburn, then you will understand how crucial this point is. Both acid reflux and heartburn are very uncomfortable issues, and both are caused by the acids in the stomach moving back up the esophagus. Although it might seem that apple cider vinegar would only add more acidity, it is actually the reverse that is true. When mixed with water and ingested, apple cider vinegar actually has an alkalizing effect that neutralizes acid reflux and heartburn.
Balance PH Levels
So just by the name, you would think that apple cider vinegar is very acidic. However, just like when discussing the benefits concerning heartburn -the reverse is actually the truth. Although it is incredibly acidic, it actually has the reverse effect inside the body. It has an alkalizing effect! This helps to balance the pH in the body, which in turn provides better overall health.
Probiotics. These little microorganisms are all over products like yogurt. They help with digestion and destroy harmful bacteria. Apple cider vinegar actually has five different types of probiotics in it. As well it has something even more powerful -prebiotics. These can be seen easily as they form a thick gunk at the bottom of the vinegar. Not pretty to look at but very beneficial for digestion and gut health.
More Energy Efficient Muscles
There are two reasons why apple cider vinegar can help you achieve more energy-efficient muscles and strength. First is that it contains a lot of potassium, which is one of the seven essential minerals that the body needs. Potassium provides an energy boost and aids with muscle cramping. The second reason is that the acid helps the muscles to turn carbs into energy. Which, in turn, fuels your workouts better and longer.
Potential Protection Against Cancer
Sadly, almost everyone these days has lost a loved one to cancer. Cancer is caused by an uncontrollable growth of cells. And despite this seemingly desperate situation, vinegar may be able to help. Apple cider vinegar along with other cider vinegars have been proven to slow the growth of tumorous cancer cells. This alone may just be the best reason for consuming apple cider vinegar!
How to Buy the Right Apple Cider Vinegar
Organic and unpasteurized are the key elements when buying apple cider vinegar. This is key to a quality product. For more information on the best brands of apple cider, check out this list.
Ways to Use Apple Cider Vinegar
There are so many ways to use this magical product!
Did you know that apple cider vinegar can be…
- Diluted it in water and drink
- Added it to salad dressing
- Added it to tea or other caffeinated drinks
- Mixed it with hot water and honey for a sore throat
- Mixed into an avocado egg salad for a tart taste and all the health benefits
- Used in a dip for vegetables such as broccoli
- Aid with headache help -rinse a cloth in water and apple cider vinegar and place on the forehead for headache relief
- Use das rinse to have shiner hair
- Mixed with your shampoo to control dandruff
There are certainly a lot of benefits to consuming apple cider vinegar. Just make sure to do so carefully. Always diluting it in water is very important. Otherwise, it could do more harm than good.
Things to Never Do with Apple Cider Vinegar
- Never drink it straight
Apple cider vinegar only has positive health benefits if it is diluted in water or mixed into other ingredients.
- Take too much at once
Because it is a very acidic product, too much too soon may irritate the stomach before it gets the chance to help. So, start slowly and work your way up to two spoonful’s a day.
- Apply it directly to the skin
Once again, because of its acidic properties, applying it directly to the skin can result in burning off skin particles. It’s best to use a topical product that has apple cider vinegar mixed into it.
Other Interesting Ways to Use Apple Cider Vinegar
We have discussed the main reasons why apple cider vinegar is good for your health, but there are also a few different ways that are worth mentioning. The following are not so much health benefits as they are topical and cosmetic issues, but nonetheless, they are important and worth knowing that they can be helped.
- Bug bites
- Poison Ivy
- Nail Fungus
In all of the above, apple cider vinegar will kill the bacteria or virus that is causing harm to your body and relieve it of the uncomfortable feeling that accompanies these issues.
Finally, as apple cider vinegar is an item that is highly revered for good optimal health, is it also a potential component of a ketogenic diet? The answer is yes, it most definitely can be. Because apple cider vinegar can balance insulin and sugar levels, helps to burn fat, aids in the digestion of more protein-based foods and curbs food cravings-it is definitely a good fit for a keto diet plan. Don’t delay, add apple cider vinegar to your keto-friendly grocery list! Want to know more about how to prepare and shop when you’re on a keto or low carb/high-fat healthy eating plan? Check out this link to our keto grocery list here.
With all of these benefits mentioned, it’s no wonder that apple cider vinegar has risen in popularity over the years. The health movement has really brought to light all these incredible results, and it has been shown that it is worth giving it a try! Just remember to dilute it in water or mix it into a recipe. Like any new health choice, start slow and wait to see how your body adapts. And finally, never apply it directly to your skin as the acidity will burn you. Follow these directions and suggestions, and you too could be enjoying the amazing health benefits of apple cider vinegar!