Vinegar has been used as a remedy for centuries as the ancient Greeks used it to treat wounds. However, in recent years, people have explored apple cider vinegar as a way to lose weight, improve heart health, and even treat dandruff.
What is Apple Cider Vinegar?
Cider vinegar is nothing else but fermented apple juice. It is made by adding yeast into apple juice that gives it acidity. The addition of yeast gives it a cloudy appearance due to bacteria and creates probiotics that are beneficial for the digestive system. Therefore, this type of vinegar has a sour taste and a strong smell, with a pH of 2-3 labeling it as mildly acidic.
ACV has been used as a cleansing agent and home remedy for ages. Some people use apple cider vinegar as a healthier alternative to harsh chemicals that have been used to clean homes for ages.
To use ACV as a cleaning agent, mix 1 part water with 1 part vinegar. This solution can be used to kill mold and bacteria by wiping down surfaces throughout your home.
Apple cider vinegar is made by chopping apples, covering them with water and leaving them at room temperature until the natural sugars ferment and form ethanol. Bacteria then converts this alcohol into acetic acid with the end result of cider vinegar.
Make Your Own ACV with The Prairie Homestead
- Fill the glass jar ¾ of the way with apple peels and cores.
- Stir in 1 tablespoon of sugar per 1 cup of water until it’s mostly dissolved.
- Pour sugar water over apple scraps until completely covered, leaving a few inches at the top.
- Cover loosely with a coffee filter or fabric scrap secured with a rubber band.
- Set in a warm, dark place for around two weeks.
- Stir every few days, if you like. If any brownish/greyish scum develops on the top, simply skim it off.
- Once two weeks has passed, strain the scraps from the liquid.
- At this point, the vinegar usually has a pleasantly sweet apple cider smell, but is still missing that lovely tang.
- Discard the scraps, and set the strained liquid aside for another 2-4 weeks.
- You now have ACV with that distinct vinegary smell and taste.
How Much to Consume
The ideal method is to add apple cider vinegar to your diet while cooking or eating. The recommendation is 1-2 tablespoons added to your water, tonic or salad dressing. Because of the acidity, it is commonly used for baking and cooking. Avoid drinking apple cider straight as the acidity can cause tooth enamel to erode.
Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar
Hippocrates from Ancient Greece prescribed ACV mixed with honey for medicinal purposes to treat a long list of ailments. In recent years, it has gained popularity as a super food and therefore people started to use ACV for weight loss and overall health improvement. Adding the recommended amount of ACV to your diet can start your path on benefiting from its health improvements that include:
ACV aids in weight loss by giving a feeling of fullness and lowering blood sugar levels. In addition to that ACV only contains 3 calories per tablespoon which give a low caloric status. A partial study showed that taking cider vinegar along with carbohydrates gives a feeling of early satiation.
Apple cider vinegar improves digestion and helps to get rid of heartburn and bloating. Probiotics are good bacteria that play a major role in your gastrointestinal health, requiring balanced pH in the stomach. Apple cider vinegar provides the optimum environment for the probiotics hence improving digestion.
Diabetes mellitus is characterized by raised levels of blood sugars due to metabolic errors. Diabetic control is usually achieved by abstaining from carbohydrates and sugars. A few studies show that ACV improves insulin sensitivity and lowers sugar levels.
Constantly raised levels of cholesterol and other fats result in the narrowing of blood vessels, leading to the development of heart disease and heart attack ultimately. Although other factors may also play a role in the development of heart disease, studies show that ACV intake may improve risk factors of heart diseases, while also lowering cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
It is thought that massaging the scalp with diluted apple cider vinegar may help in dandruff removal. Due to its natural antibacterial and anti fungal properties, ACV prevents scalp fungus and helps with dry skin conditions like eczema. It works to maintain the pH of the scalp, acting as a protective tool.
Apple cider vinegar may also have antibacterial properties. One test tube studyTrusted Source found that apple cider vinegar was effective at killing Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus, which is the bacteria responsible for staph infections
Keep in mind that ACV vinegar won’t do miracles in a few days or replace a balanced diet and exercise. Taking ACV with other healthy measures would help to maintain your health.
With apple cider vinegar having so many health benefits, it’s no wonder there are an abundance of ACV options on the market. At American Online Benefits Group, we offer products that provide our members with access to discounts on these dietary supplements and much more. Contact our Agent or Member Services today for more information at 214-389-9072.