The first evidence of the use of vinegar was discovered around 5000 BC. It was a result of grape juice, which was first turned into wine and then into vinegar. At first, vinegar was used as a food preservative, but soon its medicinal properties were discovered.
Hippocrates treated wounds with vinegar, while in 1700s, the medical professionals used vinegar for numerous conditions from stomach aches to poison ivy. Vinegar was even used as a diabetes treatment. In French, vinegar means “sour wine” which is made from any type of fermented carbohydrate such as dates, grapes, beets, potatoes, apples and coconut.
During the slow process of vinegar’s fermentation, it leaves rich bioactive components such as gallic acid, acetic acid, epicatechin, catechin, caffeic acid and it is packed with powerful antimicrobial and antioxidant qualities.
The Medscape General Medicine points out that the traditional production of wine vinegar requires slow methods which may take weeks and months until the acetic acid bacteria grows on the surface and the process of fermentation begins. This long period of fermentation enables an accumulation of acetic acid bacteria and yeast which are crucial for vinegar.
This is also called a “mother” of vinegar, a cobweb-like amino acid, found in unfiltered, unprocessed vinegar and which indicates that the vinegar is of the best quality. Some producers pasteurize and filter their vinegar in order to prevent the mother from forming, but that “murky” type of vinegar is the best type for consumption.
Along the culinary and medicinal properties, vinegar is used for cleaning, hygiene, garden care and many other purposes. This is one of the least expensive products that you should have it in your house.
Health Uses of Apple Cider Vinegar
Many people who drink 1-2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar and water in the morning have benefits from this habit. There are no official instructions for internal usage of vinegar, but if taken in small amount, it cannot harm your health.
The anti-glycemic properties of vinegar have many benefits for the blood sugar levels. It’s the acetic acid that lowers blood sugar and prevents complete digestion of complex carbohydrates.
Vinegar may be responsible for inactivation of some digestive enzymes that break down carbohydrates into sugar and slow down the conversion of complex carbohydrates from a meal into sugar.
In this way, your body has more time to eliminate the sugar from your blood and prevent the increase of blood sugar level. Some researches support the use of vinegar for diabetic purposes.
According to one study, the vinegar has improved insulin sensitivity in 19% of people with type II diabetes and around 34% of people with pre-diabetes.
Another study has shown that 2 tbsp. of ACV lower blood sugar level in people who suffer from type II diabetes by 6% in the morning.
2. Heart Health
Vinegar provides many benefits for the heart health. The Journal of Food Science states that the high levels of polyphenols inhibit oxidation of LDLs and prevent some cardiovascular diseases.
In a study conducted on lab rats, vinegar lowered cholesterol and blood pressure in rats. Vinegar is also able to reduce the levels of triglyceride and VLDL cholesterol in animal studies.
3. Weight Loss
Vinegar is packed with anti-obesity properties that can help you lose weight by reducing the amount of consumed food and increasing satiety.
When people combine a small amount of vinegar with a high-carb meal, they will consume less food for the rest of the day. This will prevent an intake of 200-275 calories a day and monthly this will result in 1.5 pounds of weight loss.
The use of vinegar in combination with bread will lower the insulin and glucose responses and will increase the levels of satiety.
4. Sinus Congestion
Vinegar will help you eliminate the mucus from your body, thus helping you to clear the sinuses. Its antibacterial properties make ACV a potent anti-inflammation agent.
5. Sore Throat
These powerful antibacterial qualities of vinegar will help you treat sore throat. Mix 1/3 of ACV with warm water and use it for gargling.
6. Digestion and Acid Reflux
Acid reflux is a result of little acid in your stomach. By only one tablespoon of raw ACV and a large glass of water every day, you will improve the amount of acid in your stomach. The pectin in vinegar will also soothe intestinal spasms.
7. Skin Irritations
ACV is effective for many skin conditions such as poison ivy, bug bites, sunburn and many others. When having such a problem, apply it on the affected part or and in your bath one cup of vinegar.
The apple cider vinegar will help you eliminate warts due to the abundance in acetic acid. To solve this problem, you just have to soak a cotton ball in ACV and apply it directly on the wart. Cover it and let it stay overnight.
9. Energy Boost
The potent enzymes and potassium in vinegar will help you remove fatigue. Also, the amino acids will prevent buildup of lactic acid, which can cause fatigue.
Apple Cider Vinegar Around Your Home
Along the medicinal properties of apple cider vinegar, it is a very effective when used in the household. You can use for the following purposes:
1. Natural Cleaning
Not only economical, vinegar is one of the safest methods of cleaning. It does not contain toxic chemicals, but is rich in antimicrobial qualities. Vinegar successfully kills bacteria, in food or in your home.
When food is fermented with vinegar, it is rich in powerful organic acids, such as lactic, acetic, citric, ascorbic, propionic, malic, tartaric and succinic acid.
Some studies point out that acetic acid can be lethal to E. coli O157 while other studies show that a combination of lemon juice and vinegar can fight salmonella effectively.
2. Weed Killer
One potent substance that can control the weeds in the garden is the vinegar. According to The Dirt Doctor, Howard Garrett, there is an herbicide based on vinegar that can kill any type of weed.
- 1 gallon – 10% vinegar
- 1-ounce orange oil or d-limonene
- 1tbsp molasses
- 1 tsp some surfactant (e.g. Bio Wash)
- Do not add water
3. Neutralize Odors
Pour some apple cider vinegar in some bowl to neutralize all the odors in your house.
4. Fruit and Veggie Wash
By using vinegar, you will naturally remove all the pesticides and bacteria, that resides on your fresh products. Combine 10% of vinegar to 90% of water and soak all the veggies and fruits.
After soaking, rinse the products well. Make sure you do not soak some fragile fruits such as berries because they can be easily damaged in this process and too much vinegar could enter into their skin.
Hygiene and Beauty
Apple cider vinegar should take place in your bathroom.
1. Hair Rinse
Vinegar will help you balance your scalp’s pH level and remove product build-up. Every week rinse your hair with 1/3 apple cider vinegar and 4 cups of water.
To prevent dandruff, mix equal amounts of water and apple cider vinegar and then spray your scalp. Wrap your hair in a towel and let it sit for an hour. Rinse your hair and repeat this treatment twice a week.
2. Facial Toner
You can prepare an effective facial toner and cleanser by diluting some vinegar on a cotton ball. In this way, you will treat bruises to fade faster.
As we have mentioned before, vinegar neutralizes bad odor because it kills the bacteria that cause that odor. So, it is a powerful natural deodorant that will remove the unpleasant smell under your arms.
4. Oral Health
To eliminate bad breath in your mount and whiten your teeth, gargle with a diluted apple cider vinegar. Bear in mind that this substance is highly acidic one due to the acetic acid that can harm your health if not diluted in water before consumption.
Also, if not diluted, apple cider vinegar can damage the tissues of your mouth and tooth enamel.
5. Foot Odor
Wipe your feet with apple cider vinegar and you will eliminate the bacteria that cause bad odor and smell of your feet.
How to Use Apple Cider Vinegar in Your Cooking
When cooking, you can use apple cider vinegar in many creative ways.
- Include vinegar in homemade marinades, soups, sauces or smoothies.
- Add some vinegar to baked goods (for an extra lift) or in salad dressing (with garlic, olive oil, mustard and many other ingredients).
- Apple cider vinegar is an excellent ingredient for fish and meat marinade because it provides a good bit of zing.
- You can add vinegar over cooked greens, cucumber salad or at pickled vegetables.
Try some apple cider vinegar recipes such as Moist & Chocolate Zucchini Loaf with ACV or Lentil & Kidney Bean Chili.
Homemade Bone Broth
Vinegar is an essential ingredient for homemade bone broth. It helps leach all the vital nutrients from the bones into the water. So, apple cider vinegar plays an important role in what you will be eating and the mineral you will get from it.
Choose the Bragg’s apple cider vinegar because it is unpasteurized and unfiltered. If you are not a fan of vinegar’s flavor, you can consume some fermented foods in order to provide the beneficial acids.
This acid is important because it will enrich your gut with beneficial bacteria. Vinegar is a highly beneficial and safe product for usage so start using it in your diet as soon as you can.
Choose the Right Vinegar: Avoid Distilled Vinegar!
The distilled types of vinegar are excellent for laundry, cleaning or some health purposes, but definitely the organic, unprocessed and unfiltered vinegar is safe despite being murky.
This murkiness is a result of cobweb-like substance called the “mother” and this is a definite sign of vinegar’s high-quality. However, make sure you consume apple cider vinegar in moderate doses because a long-term excessive use can lower the levels of potassium and affect the density of the bones.
Also, vinegar can interact with laxatives, diuretics, heart diseases and diabetes medicines. Before consuming apple cider vinegar, consult your doctor in order to make sure that it won’t interfere with the medicines you currently use.
Additional Bonus for More Benefits
Along vinegar, you can use fermented vegetables because it contains a mild acid that contains lactic acid.
Also, the fermented vegetables will enrich your health with two other benefits: they will improve and replenish your gut microbiome and if they contain K2 starter culture, they will provide important doses of vitamin K2 and vitamin D.