For centuries, people have been using apple cider vinegar for cooking, cleaning and natural health remedies. That’s because it tastes nice and also boasts antimicrobial, antibacterial, antifungal and antioxidant properties. This means that ACV, as it’s popularly shortened to, can do just about everything from relieve the pain of stings to help cure an upset stomach.
The vinegar itself is made using a two-step process. First, apple cider is created from a mixture of crushed apples and yeast. The result is an alcoholic beverage. Bacteria is then added to the mixture in order to ferment the alcohol into vinegar.
Apple cider vinegar is a low calorie, 5-6% acetic acid. It can be consumed or used topically, when diluted, and has so many health benefits, it’s hard to list all of them in a single article. Read on to learn about 18 of the most impressive bodily benefits of apple cider vinegar, and then the best bottle to buy.
It should be noted, however, that you should always practice caution whenever using a new product or remedy, whether you’re consuming it or using it topically. Please always consult a medical professional before ingesting and always test on small patches of skin before applying topically.
Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar
The benefits of apple cider vinegar are many and varied. Below, we’ll discuss the best benefits to your health, from improved digestion to lower cholesterol.
1. Apple Cider Vinegar Might Cure an Upset Stomach
For centuries, people have been using apple cider vinegar to cure an upset stomach. This natural remedy works thanks to apple cider vinegar’s antimicrobial properties, which kill diarrhea-causing bacteria, like E. coli. To use apple cider vinegar when your stomach is upset, simply mix one to two tablespoons of liquid apple cider vinegar into a glass of water or clear juice, then drink the mixture in full.
2. Apple Cider Vinegar Could Stop Indigestion
Although there have been no recent scientific studies surrounding the efficacy of using apple cider vinegar to treat indigestion or acid reflux, people have been using this hack for years. Some research points to the fact that many suffer from acid reflux when their stomach produces too little acid. During these periods, the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) relaxes, allowing gastric acid to enter the esophagus. By adding more acid to the digestive tract in the form of apple cider vinegar, sufferers of indigestion can encourage the LES to behave properly. To do so, add a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar and a teaspoon of honey to warm water and consume it half an hour before acid reflux-inducing meal times.
3. Apple Cider Vinegar Might Help You Lose Weight
Studies show that apple cider vinegar can promote feelings of fullness when consumed alongside a carb-heavy meal. This can lead you to consume fewer calories during that meal and for the rest of the day. In fact, study participants took in, on average 200 to 275 fewer calories per day after adding apple cider vinegar to their diet.
Scientists have also studied the effects of apple cider vinegar on belly fat and found that taking one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar each day led to 2.6 pounds of weight loss in obese patients over three months. While this number isn’t incredible, it does point to the fact that ACV can be immensely beneficial to the digestive system.
4 Apple Cider Vinegar Could Give You an Energy Boost
Apple cider vinegar might counteract the effects of lactic acid, which builds up in our muscles as a result of stress and exercise. Lactic acid can make us feel sluggish, but the potassium in apple cider vinegar as well as its amino acids can counteract the build up. Just add a tablespoon to your post-workout water to keep your energy levels high.
5. Apple Cider Vinegar Might Stop the Hiccups
Hiccups are the worst, and most common remedies for the contractions simply don’t work. The next time you get a persistent case of the hiccups, try sipping on apple cider vinegar. While more studies are needed to prove the effectiveness of the treatment, the Journal of Palliative Medicine provides scientific proof that drinking a teaspoon of straight vinegar can stop hiccups or decrease the intensity of hiccups within minutes.
6. Apple Cider Vinegar Could Soothe a Sore Throat
Because apple cider vinegar creates an acidic environment in the body, it can be used to kill infection-causing germs, especially those that create sore throats. In fact, apple cider vinegar has been used for thousands of years in a simple mouthwash for sore throats. Mix 1/4 cup of apple cider vinegar with 1/4 cup of water, then gargle for about a minute and a half. Just be careful when preparing the mixture, as apple cider vinegar has been shown to cause esophagus damage when consumed without dilution.
7. Apple Cider Vinegar Could Relieve Migraines
While there haven’t been any direct studies on the correlation between apple cider vinegar and migraine relief, people have been using the vinegar in natural remedies for decades. Some people believe that ACV helps with migraines by aiding in digestion, controlling blood sugar spikes and providing the body with extra potassium. The safest way to use apple cider vinegar to treat migraines is to consume it with honey and water, although some people also recommend soaking a clean washcloth in the vinegar and then using it as a cold compress. If you choose the latter approach, be careful not to get the vinegar in your eyes.
8. Apple Cider Vinegar Might Lower Cholesterol
One study published in the British Journal of Nutrition and a further report in Bioscience, Biotechnology, and Biochemistry found that the acetic acid in apple cider vinegar lowered cholesterol and blood pressure in rats. However, further study is definitely needed to prove that these same benefits would be seen in humans. Before you attempt to add apple cider vinegar to your diet in order to lower your cholesterol, it’s important to talk to your doctor as acetic acid can impact the way many cholesterol medicines interact with the body.
9. Apple Cider Vinegar Could Help Control Blood Sugar
Thanks to numerous studies on the matter, scientists have proven that apple cider vinegar has an anti-glycemic effect on the human body. In one study, when sufferers of type 2 diabetes took two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar before bed, scientists found their fasting glucose levels were lower than those patients who consumed water before bed. It’s important to note that these studies in no way indicate that apple cider vinegar should replace prescribed treatment methods. However, ACV could be used to supplement diabetes treatment in people who have high-fasting glucose levels.
10. Apple Cider Vinegar Could Treat Dandruff
The growth of yeast on the scalp is a major cause of dandruff in adults. When applied to the scalp, apple cider vinegar may prevent the growth of this yeast by adjusting the pH level of the scalp. After all, apple cider vinegar is an acid and has a low pH level of about 2. In fact, the Galen Medical Journal suggests that a topical application of apple cider vinegar, water and an herb known as marsh mallow is an effective treatment for seborrheic dermatitis.
To create your own apple cider vinegar hair rinse, mix 1/4 cup water and 1/4 apple cider vinegar in a spray bottle. Spray the mixture onto your hair, being careful not to get it in your eyes, and let the rinse sit on your hair for 10 minutes. Then, wash your hair as normal.
11. Apple Cider Vinegar Might Freshen Hair Between Washes
Although this article focuses on the health benefits of apple cider vinegar, the cleaning benefits are also well known. You can use the acid to clean household surfaces extremely effectively, but you can also use it to clean residue from your hair between washes. The vinegar can work to remove any nasty product build up in your hair, leaving you with shiny, healthier hair. Use a two part water, one part vinegar solution on your hair, and be very careful not to put the mixture anywhere near your eyes.
12. Apple Cider Vinegar Might Help Get Rid of Acne
For the past few years, skin care products touting the inclusion of apple cider vinegar have become increasingly popular. While there is very little research about the direct effect apple cider vinegar has on acne, it is known that ACV can kill up to 90% of bacteria. Furthermore, acetic, citric, lactic and succinic acid, which are all present in apple cider vinegar, have been shown to kill P. acnes, the bacteria that causes acne. Although more research is needed, there is also some anecdotal evidence that apple cider vinegar may fade acne scars.
To use apple cider vinegar on your face, dilute one part apple cider vinegar with three parts water and use a cotton ball to apply the mixture to your recently washed face. Let the solution sit on your skin for 10 seconds and then rinse it off using water. This face rinse can be used once daily.
13. Apple Cider Vinegar Could Soothe Minor Sunburns
Next time you have a sunburn, skip the aloe vera and opt for apple cider vinegar instead. There’s little evidence about why ACV relieves minor sunburn pain, but people have been using it as a homemade remedy for years. However, we do know that apple cider vinegar has good antibacterial properties that might prevent infections caused by damage to the skin through sunburn.
To make the most of this sunburn pain treatment, add some apple cider vinegar to a cool bath, or mix one part apple cider vinegar with three parts cool water in a spray bottle and spritz any affected areas of the skin.
14. Apple Cider Vinegar Might Fight Foot and Armpit Odor
One of the most common home remedies for foot and armpit odor is apple cider vinegar. That’s because ACV can kill up to 90% of bacteria on contact, including the bacteria that causes your body to stink. To use apple cider vinegar on either your armpits or feet, you’ll first need to dilute it in water. Then, soak a washcloth or baby wipe in the solution and wipe down your feet or under arms. For some people, this may also be an effective and all-natural substitute for deodorant.
15. Apple Cider Vinegar Could Get Rid of Warts
Warts are caused by a virus known as HPV, and while there is no known cure for wart-causing HPV, there are several known methods for removing warts once they occur. These range from freezing off warts in a dermatologist’s office to using apple cider vinegar at home. Although there is no conclusive evidence showing the effectiveness of apple cider vinegar for this process, some scientists have done research on a similar acid called salicylic acid. The process works because vinegar kills the virus on contact, breaks down the warty skin and encourages the immune system to fight the virus.
To use ACV on your warts, mix two parts apple cider vinegar with one part water and soak a cotton ball in the mixture. Place the cotton ball over your wart and tape it in place using a Band-aid. Leave the cotton ball in place overnight and then remove it. Repeat the process nightly until the wart is gone.
It’s important to note that you should test your skin for sensitivities to apple cider vinegar before pursuing this wart treatment.
16. Apple Cider Vinegar Could Get Rid of Bad Breath
As we’ve discussed above, the antibacterial properties of apple cider vinegar have been shown to kill odor-causing bacteria. The magical liquid also boasts antifungal properties that can kill any fungus growing in and around dentures. Therefore, no matter what’s causing your persistent bad breath, ACV might help. Dilute apple cider vinegar in water to create a gargle or drink a small amount mixed with water.
17. Apple Cider Vinegar Might Get Rid of Nail Fungus
Although more scientific research is needed on the subject, the acetic acid in apple cider vinegar is thought to have antifungal properties. Because of this, it can be effective at slowing the growth or killing nail fungus. When applied to the skin, apple cider vinegar may also make your body less susceptible to nail fungus by giving your skin a lower pH level. In order to use apple cider vinegar to treat nail fungus, you’ll need to create a foot soak using one part vinegar and two parts warm water. Bathe your feet in this mixture for 15 minutes a day until the fungus disappears.
18. Apple Cider Vinegar Might Relieve Itchy Stings and Bites
Like other vinegars, apple cider vinegar is known to counteract the itch in mosquito bites, wasp stings and poison ivy. It can also help diminish the pain of jellyfish stings. Dip a cotton ball in a solution of one part apple cider vinegar and one part water, then apply the cotton ball to your itchy bites. If you have a lot of bites, add a cup of apple cider vinegar to your bath for a relaxing soak.
Now that you can see all the benefits of using apple cider vinegar in your daily life, read on to learn more about the best apple cider vinegar products you can buy online.
1. Bragg Organic Apple Cider Vinegar
If you want to reap the most benefits from your apple cider vinegar, grab a bottle of organic, unfiltered ACV with the mother still inside. The “mother” is a living substance full of friendly bacteria, enzymes and proteins. Although unsubstantiated, many apple cider vinegar proponents claim all the health benefits come from this mother substance. Bragg Organic Apple Cider Vinegar is the most popular option on the market. It’s been produced in the same unpasteurized form since 1912.
2. DietWorks Organic Apple Cider Vinegar Tonic
BEST PRE-MIXED DRINK
Most of the above remedies involve either applying apple cider vinegar to your skin or ingesting it. Should you be looking to do the latter, you can buy a pre-mixed tonic that takes the guesswork out of ACV consumption. The DietWorks Organic Apple Cider Vinegar Tonic contains garcinia, matcha and kombucha to help you lose weight and feel better in your skin. Like the Bragg ACV above, this bottle also contains an active “mother” to cleanse and detoxify your digestive system.
3. NutriRise Apple Cider Vinegar Capsules
Some people really dislike the taste of vinegar but still want to reap the benefits of apple cider vinegar. If you fall into that category, consider investing in apple cider vinegar capsules, like these from NutriRise. These capsules contain 100% pure apple cider vinegar to support your digestive system and perhaps help in your weight loss journey. Take three capsules per day for the best results.
4. MAJU Apple Cider Vinegar Gummies
Gummy vitamins aren’t just for kids. These MAJU Apple Cider Vinegar Gummies make getting your daily dose of ACV fun and easy. MAJU uses raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar with the mother intact to create the gummies, and they’re designed to help customers with their digestion, complexion and energy levels. Take two gummies every day for optimal results.
5. The Republic of Tea Apple Cider Single Sips
Probably the most portable way to enjoy apple cider vinegar whenever you need it is with these single sips. The Republic of Tea Apple Cider Single Sips blend instantly into water to create a cranberry hibiscus tonic that’s good for energizing and detoxifying. The herbal blend is completely sugar free, calorie free and caffeine free.