Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar
For centuries, vinegar has been used for various household and cooking purposes.
It is also an ancient folk remedy, claimed to help with all sorts of health problems. The most popular vinegar in the natural health community is Apple Cider Vinegar.
It is claimed to lead to all sorts of beneficial effects… some of which are supported by science. This includes weight loss, lower blood sugar levels and improved symptoms of diabetes.
11 Real Benefits of Vinegar
11. It cancels out some of the carbs you eat.
The acetic acid found in vinegar interferes with the enzymes in your stomach responsible for digesting starch so you can’t absorb the calories from carbs you’ve eaten.
In theory, this means that vinegar should help with weight loss, and existing research supports the notion. But before you go buying bagels by the dozen and vinegar by the gallon: Johnston warns that vinegar will not necessarily promote weight loss (no matter how much you consume) — particularly if you double down on carbs thinking you’re immune to calories. No one knows exactly how many calories vinegar can block because no research has been done on the topic. Because undigested starch could be fermented in the colon, and your body could end up absorbing the starch calories after all, Johnston doubts vinegar can cause rapid weight loss after all.
22. It softens your energy crash after eating lots of sugar or carbs.
Consuming vinegar before a meal can help by slowing the rush of sugar to your blood stream, so your blood sugar spike resembles a hill instead of a mountain and you don’t crash quite as hard.
33. It keeps you full for longer.
In a small but thorough study, researchers found that people who consumed vinegar before eating a breakfast of white bread felt more satisfied 90 minutes after eating compared to people who only ate the bread. (Worth noting: Two hours after eating, both groups were equally hungry. It just goes to show why white bread doesn’t make a stellar breakfast — with or without vinegar.)
44. It can help your muscles produce energy more efficiently before a major push.
Endurance athletes sometimes drink diluted vinegar before they carb-load the night before competing because acetic acid helps the muscles turn carbs into energy to fuel intense exercise, according to well-regarded research conducted on animals.
55. It could lower your blood pressure.
Animal studies suggest that drinking vinegar can lower your blood pressure by a few points. Researchers don’t understand exactly how this works or whether it is equally effective among humans, but Johnston is pretty confident it can make at least a modest difference.
66. It cleans fruits and veggies.
The best way to clean produce, according to Johnston, is with diluted vinegar: Research suggests its antibacterial properties can significantly reduce pathogens such as Salmonella. Just fill an empty spray bottle with diluted vinegar and spritz your produce (salad stuff, fruits, etc.) then rinse in regular water before serving.
And don’t rely on a vinegar-based salad dressing to redeem a dirty deli’s salad bar fare: Johnston worries that mixing vinegar with ingredients found in salad dressings (like salt or olive oil) or with actual salad could render acetic acid inactive, and says that more research is needed on the topic.
77. It kills bad breath.
You might have heard that the antibacterial properties of vinegar can kill microorganisms responsible for bad breath — and in theory, this is true. However, Johnston warns, “it’s no more effective than any other antibacterial agents, and there are better products designed for this purpose.”
88. It deodorizes smelly feet.
Just wipe down your clompers with a paper towel dipped in diluted vinegar. The antibacterial properties of vinegar will kill the smelly stuff.
99. It relieves jellyfish stings.
In case you’re ever stung by a jellyfish and just so happen to have diluted vinegar on hand, you’ll be awfully lucky: Vinegar deactivates the jellyfish’s sting better than many other remedies — even though hot water still works best, according to a study that compared both techniques.
1010. It balances your body’s pH levels.
Which could mean better bone health. Although vinegar is obviously acidic, it actually has a neutralizing effect once it’s inside of you. Meaning: It makes your body’s pH more basic (i.e., alkaline).
Because studies show that people who eat more alkaline diets (more veggies and less meat) tend to have greater bone mineral density — something you might not think twice about now, but will definitely appreciate as an Old — vinegar could, in theory, strengthen your bones. (It’s a hypothesis that makes lots of sense of paper, even though no one has proven it yet, says Johnston.)
1111. It alleviates heartburn.
Sometimes, according to Johnston, who just wrapped up a study on using vinegar to treat this condition. Vinegar’s effectiveness depends on the source of your heartburn: If you have erosive heartburn caused by lesions in your esophagus or stomach ulcers, a dose of vinegar will only aggravate the problem. But if your heartburn stems from something you ate, adding acetic acid to your stomach can help neutralize the acid in there and help fix the problem, providing you with at least a little bit of comfort.
It could be why some folklore suggests vinegar can sooth an upset stomach triggered by a bacterial infection — which has never been studied, but may check out, according to Johnston.