If you’ve spent any time on Pinterest at all, you’ve likely come across a handful of home remedies that include a small pantry: apple cider vinegar.
This pickling agent and the nondescript addition to your banana bread are also a widely used home remedy. Dozens of blog posts teach you how to make your own apple cider gums and advertise wellness benefits for everything from weight loss to curing yeast infections.
Apple cider vinegar, known as ACV, is an inexpensive ingredient that is said to restore your body’s pH balance. It’s not a panacea, but there are some truths in many internet claims (and some falsehoods too, which we will address as well). In this post, we are going to show you what apple cider vinegar is, how it works in the body, and some popular home remedies that you may have seen online.
What is apple cider vinegar?
You’ve likely used a number of vinegars around your home – malt vinegar to pour over your french fries, balsamic vinegar to splash on your salad, or distilled white vinegar to combat the relentless odor emanating from your trash disposal. It’s safe to say that vinegar is a handy household item, whether it’s for cleaning or consuming.
But what exactly are they? Vinegar is essentially alcohol (ethanol) that is not mixed with oxygen, which causes bacterial fermentation. Its original purpose was to pickle and preserve food, but people kept discovering new uses along the way. Each type of vinegar goes through its own process to get its specific properties, but they all share the same distinctive acidity that vinegar and vinegar are made from.
Derived from the French phrase vin aigre, which means sour wine, vinegar is basically acetic acid, a fermentation by-product. Acetic acid is also known as ethanoic acid, ethyl acid, acetic acid, and methane carboxylic acid.
To make apple cider vinegar, pitted and peeled apples are crushed into apple juice. Then the apple sugar is converted into ethanol (this is fermented apple cider vinegar) with the help of added yeast. The ethanol is then converted into acetic acid (this is fermented vinegar) with the help of airborne bacteria called Acetobacter.
In addition to the a probiotic Apple cider vinegar (a friendly bacteria in your gut that helps digestion) is full of B vitamins and polyphenols (plant-based antioxidants).
What is “the mother” in apple cider vinegar?
When it comes to apple cider vinegar, one variety in particular receives more praise than another. This is the “mother” version because it includes the proponent that many say is responsible for most of the health benefits (although there is no research to support this).
The mother refers to the cobweb-like combination of Acetobacter and cellulose that can naturally form on top of the vinegar during fermentation, resulting in its cloudy brown color. You can also buy a nut to add to the vinegar. The mother should contain healthy natural proteins, healthy bacteria and acetic acid. On the other hand, crystal clear vinegars have been filtered and pasteurized to remove the mother and most of her nutrients.
Home remedies with apple cider vinegar
Apple cider vinegar home remedies are abundant on the internet. It’s important to remember studies that mainly look at health benefits focused on lowering blood sugar levels and weight lossThese studies are relatively small, short-term, and often use animals rather than humans.
Before trying on your own, keep in mind that no home remedy is a substitute for any prescription medication you are currently taking. Home remedies should never be used to treat serious medical conditions.
In most cases, adding small amounts of apple cider vinegar to your diet or wellness routine won’t cause any negative side effects, but be aware of changes in your body and consult your doctor if conditions persist or worsen.
Apple cider vinegar for weight loss
Does Apple Cider Vinegar Help You Lose Weight? Weight loss graphics, ads, and blog posts that are widely available online would lead you to believe this is a resounding “yes”. It can be difficult to find out the truth from snake oil when you are inundated with this type of information. And if the claims are about a relatively inexpensive and extremely accessible pantry like apple cider vinegar (without recommending a healthy lifestyle change to do so), you are right to be skeptical.
So here’s the deal when it comes to apple cider vinegar and weight loss: don’t cancel your gym membership. You could experience weight loss benefits from consuming 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar a day, but a tactic like this certainly won’t melt the fat off you.
According to a Study in the Journal of Functional FoodResearchers concluded that Apple cider vinegar affects weight by reducing your appetite. The researchers monitored a group of people who exercised and ate 250 calories less than their estimated daily allowance, but also consumed 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. These people lost an average of 8.8 pounds over the 12-week study period. Participants who made the same changes but did not consume the vinegar lost only 5 pounds.
Heads up: Acetic acid can destroy tooth enamel, so those who drink it often do so with a glass of water.
Apple cider vinegar as a facial toner
The acetic acid in apple cider vinegar could result in clearer skinsay some researchers. This DIY skin care solution is used as a toner that cleanses your skin thoroughly and clears your pores of oil and dirt. It can have antibacterial and antifungal properties and kill bacteria that lead to blemishes.
Recipes often call for 1 tablespoon of vinegar to 2 cups of water – never use undiluted vinegar as it can chafe the skin. Applied with a cotton ball and left on for five to 15 minutes before washing off, the toner is unlikely to completely cure your acne, but it can be effective at drying out whiteheads.
Apple cider vinegar for sunburn relief
Next time They are sucking up too much sun and you’re considering an apple cider vinegar bath to soothe your burnt skin. While apple cider vinegar can bring some relief because of it antibacterial, cooling effectThe malic acid it contains can cause burns to your damaged skin.
When it comes to this home remedy, leave the apple cider vinegar in your cupboards and take a cold shower, drink plenty of water, and reach for an over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream instead.
Should You Try Apple Cider Vinegar Home Remedies?
Here’s the verdict: we encourage you to use your best judgment and stay away from the above remedies which could make the situation worse. While there is little scientific evidence of the health benefits of apple cider vinegar, anecdotal evidence often shows some improvement in health and wellbeing.
Always do your homework before diving into DIY apple cider vinegar or other treatments to weigh the pros and cons and keep your safety in mind. And if you are not sure, contact your doctor.
If you have any questions about any of the topics discussed here, reach out to yours INTEGRIS doctor about specific recommendations for you.
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