Apple Cider Vinegar

by Sandy Todd Webster on Jul 21, 2013

Food Focus

Believers in the axiom “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” won’t be surprised to learn that apple cider vinegar has vast health benefits and about 101 different uses, including some unrelated to food.

A vat of apple cider vinegar is made from fresh, ripe apples that have been fermented and rigorously processed to turn them into vinegar. A distinct identifying feature of quality is the “mother,” or strandlike sediment floating at the bottom of the bottle (contrary to its appearance, this doesn’t mean your vinegar has gone bad). Indeed, the mother is where the magic is! It contains raw enzymes and gut-friendly bacteria that promote healing. One manufacturer sells an apple cider vinegar drink brand advertised with the notion that as far back as “400 BC, Hippocrates, the Father of Medicine, used it for its amazing natural cleansing, healing and energizing qualities.”

The vinegar has been tied in research to positive effects on detoxification, weight loss, cancer (helps balance alkalinity in the body), asthma, depression, diarrhea, diabetes, high cholesterol, bloating, heartburn and arthritis. A study in the journal Annals of Nutrition & Metabolism (2010; 56 [1], 74-79) found that adding 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar to a meal containing carbohydrates reduced postmeal blood glucose in healthy people by about 20%; the vinegar appears to slow the release of sugar into the bloodstream.

Apple cider vinegar can also be part of your skincare regime. Some people reportedly take a teaspoon or two (diluted in water) a few times daily to promote healthy skin from the inside out, but it can also be (diluted and) applied directly to skin, dabbed on blemishes or used for sunburn relief.

Not enough applications for you? This home remedy can serve as a hair conditioner, a nontoxic cleaning spray and a deodorant as well.

Do you use apple cider vinegar regularly? What do you use it for? Share your ideas with swebster@ideafit.com.

IDEA Food and Nutrition Tips , Volume 2, Issue 4

© 2013 by IDEA Health & Fitness Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction without permission is strictly prohibited.

About the Author

Sandy Todd Webster

Sandy Todd Webster IDEA Author/Presenter

Sandy Todd Webster is Editor in Chief of IDEA's publications, including the award-winning IDEA FITNESS JOURNAL, the health and fitness industry's leading resource for fitness and wellness professional...

5 Comments

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  • Tami Sauer

    I also love Braggs. I use it when I feel PMS water retention coming on. I suffer with chronic sinus/post nasal drip. I mix a little ACV with garlic, ginger root, and onion, saute add to meat, rice, veggies. Opens sinus and clear congestion.
    Commented Aug 01, 2013
  • User

    I love Braggs Apple Cider Vinegar first thing in the morning-- 1 tablespoon of vinegar in water. It has helped me get things moving as they say--and yes it works.
    Commented Jul 27, 2013
  • Laurie Back

    There is a fantastic all-organic product, called "Braggberry", made by the same folks that make Bragg's Amino Acids. It contains apple cider vinegar, as well as super-oxidant blueberries, raspberries, gogi berries, acai berries, pomegranate, and concord grapes. I put a tablespoon in my millet/rice breakfast cereal, along with chia seeds, sunflower and pumpkin seeds, whole-food protein powder, and banana, and then add water. Delicious, filling, and so healthy. Braggberry also is delicious in iced water for a refreshing summer drink, or a smoothie. The label says it can be used as a salad dressing or marinade. It's been a yummy way to get apple cider vinegar into my diet.
    Commented Jul 26, 2013
  • Rachel Lawshe

    My husband's elderly grandparents swear by ACV for alleviating arthritis & joint pain. My husband uses it for nausea and upset stomach issues. I use it for losing weight and preventing diabetes because, as you stated, it keeps your blood sugar more level and doesn't let it spike after a meal. I also use it to combat bloating, heartburn, and other G.I. problems in myself. Great article about the benefits of apple cider vinegar! I love the stuff!
    Commented Jul 25, 2013
  • User

    I use it as a hair clarifier every six weeks. You can mix a capful in a bottle of water or even add it to a smoothie. ACV is also a good ingredient in homemade salad dressing. - Hope
    Commented Jul 25, 2013