Natural Ingredients

Apple Cider Vinegar – Health Benefits, Uses, and Side Effects

Apple cider vinegar has been used for various beneficial purposes from the past many years and has proven to be good for health. This magical liquid is produced during the fermentation of apple cider. A process that involves apples, yeast, and bacteria, producing the vinegar as the end product.

Like many other kinds of vinegar, the key component of apple cider vinegar is acetic acid, the other components being malic, citric and lactic acids, and bacteria.

Apple cider vinegar has withstood the test of time, the reports of its benefits and healing properties date back as far as 3300 B.C. It is said to have the properties of a disinfectant, a natural preservative, and a remedy for many ailments for centuries.

Apple cider vinegar is thus proclaimed to be the miracle ingredient. But is it really a miracle ingredient? Let’s discuss in details,

Health Benefits of Using Apple Cider Vinegar:

Many claims have been made about how this liquid benefits health, and some of the claims are backed up by science and scientific evidence. Some of these benefits are:

  • Blood Sugar

The acetic acid in the vinegar has helped in controlling the blood sugar levels in the body. It has helped in preventing large blood sugar level spikes.

This has been said to be especially beneficial for people who are prediabetic or have type 2 diabetes as it improves insulin sensitivity and insulin response. Although there is still insufficient data to prove this claim fully.

  • Losing Weight

The vinegar, if taken before or after meals, has been claimed to show a significant reduction in the consumption of calories. This may happen due to the feeling of satiety.

Although the reduction of weight is also dependent on other factors such as lifestyle and diet. However, introducing the vinegar to the diet had a modest effect on the weight loss journey of many individuals.

  • Lowering Cholesterol

In this era, one of the most common and major causes of premature death is heart diseases. Consumption of the vinegar has shown significant improvement in lowering blood triglycerides, cholesterol, and blood pressure.

This all can contribute to the reduced risk of developing heart diseases. However, more substantial data is still required to prove the claim fully.

Uses of Apple Cider Vinegar:

From the past few years, apple cider vinegar has become an important ingredient for many beauty-related issues.

Although it is not backed by strong scientific data, many circumstantial pieces of evidence have claimed for its potential in treating problems like:

  • Dandruff

There are claims that light spritzing of diluted apple cider vinegar has helped in reducing dandruff.

This may occur due to the presence of acetic acid in the vinegar creates an unfavourable environment for the yeast to flourish. Yeast is one of the major components that contribute to dandruff.

  • Bug Bites and Stings

Application of diluted vinegar helps in reducing the itching and irritation of mosquito bites, poison ivy, and jellyfish stings, etc.

  • Oily Hair

It controls oil content on your scalp when an extremely diluted vinegar solution is sprayed on the hair between washes. 4-5 drops of vinegar in 5 ounces of water has provided with results.

  • Sunburn

It has been reported to relieve pain and discomfort of mild sunburn when lightly spritzed on in the diluted form. It can lead to further injury if it is applied directly or on serious burns.

  • Acne

The application has helped out in drying acne when dabbed on in diluted forms. As it can lead to injury or chemical burns if it’s not dilute enough.

  • Body Odor

It may act as a deodorant when applied in dilute forms, neutralizing the odor caused by the bacteria in the armpit and feet. The liquid helps in balancing the skin’s pH and fight the bacteria that causes the odor.

Side Effects

Although apple cider vinegar may seem to be a star ingredient providing with multiple benefits.

It can be potentially dangerous if precautions are not taken. One must be aware of the possible outcomes of using the vinegar unwisely like:

  • Tooth decay

Apple cider vinegar can also lead to tooth decay if consing regularly. This is because, like all vinegar, apple cider vinegar is also very acidic, and unchecked consumption can lead to tooth decay.

The teeth enamel is likely to deteriorate and cause cavities under the acidic conditions.

The direct contact of vinegar and teeth should be avoided to prevent tooth decay. Also, diluted forms should be consumed, preferably from a straw, to avoid damage.

  • Skin burns

The acidity of the vinegar means that the direct application of the liquid can lead to chemical burns. Diluting the liquid is necessary when using it to avoid skin burns.

The concentration necessary to avoid the burns is not standardized, so it’s difficult to judge how much to dilute for it to be safe.

It is best if the vinegar is used in diluted forms and is not left on the skin for long periods as it can result in skin burns.

People who are suffering from acne or have sensitive skin should consult with their doctors before applying. A patch test done before using it is the best way to avoid them.

  • Decreased potassium levels

Excessive use of undiluted apple cider vinegar has reported cases with hypokalemia (low potassium levels) and low mineral content in the bones.

The continuous and excessive use of undiluted apple cider vinegar has been a cause of mineral leaching.

  • Digestive problems

Apple cider vinegar can worsen the conditions of people who are suffering from digestive problems if consumed in undiluted forms.

As its an acid with a pH of 2 to 3, it can cause burns to the digestive tracts causing stomach ulcers or acid reflux, especially when consumed in undiluted forms.

  • Blood Sugar

The vinegar has shown some effect on how the blood sugar regulates in the body. So, diabetic people must consult their doctors before consuming it as it can result in problems.

Apple cider vinegar can be a helpful detoxifying drink and may aid in many potential benefits for many people. However, it’s necessary to keep a careful check on how the vinegar is being consumed.

Therefore only diluted forms of the vinegar should be used in moderation to avoid the side effects.


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