Apple Cider Vinegar began being used for medicinal purposes as early as 400 BC when Hippocrates prescribed it for various treatments. It is mainly composed of apple juice, to which yeast is added to ferment some of the fruit’s sugars into acetic acid. Apple cider vinegar contains polyphenol compounds that have been shown to give beneficial health effects. Apple is also a good source of flavonoids and antioxidants. These compounds, along with a substantial amount of vitamin C, provide protective effects to the body.
Some of the benefits of apple cider vinegar include:
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1. Anti-Aging Properties
The main cause of anti-aging can be due to reactive oxygen species that damage the DNA and proteins in your skin. Recent evidence reveals that apple cider vinegar can prevent aging and cell death. A study focused on the polyphenols in apples and made solutions that showed prolonged cellular life spans in cell cultures. Although more research is necessary, the study highlighted the potential for the use of apple cider vinegar in topical anti-aging treatments.
2. Help with Varicose Veins
Varicose veins are large, dilated veins that are commonly seen on the legs and can be associated with pain and discomfort. A study was performed to test the effects of topical apple cider vinegar application to treat varicose veins. The group of study subjects who received the apple cider vinegar application had a significant reduction in symptoms, including cramps, pain, itching, pigmentation and discomfort in the legs. The apple cider vinegar did not make the varicose veins disappear and only helped with symptoms.
3. Controlling Blood Sugar
In one study, it was shown that ingested apple cider vinegar can help manage blood glucose levels and has the potential to make you feel fuller so that you eat less. The study examined whether supplementation of a meal with vinegar would affect glucose levels. The data showed that there were reduced blood glucose and insulin as well as increased feelings of satiety, or fullness in the individuals. Based on this evidence that apple cider vinegar consumption may blunt blood sugar spikes and suppress appetite, individuals who are diabetic or trying to lose weight might find that supplementing their diet with apple cider vinegar is beneficial. It is important to consider that apple cider vinegar is acidic and has a bitter taste. Adding a small amount of lemon or honey can help improve the taste.
4. Apple Cider Vinegar Skin Toner
Our skin is naturally acidic and when these pH levels are out of balance, it can lead to breakouts, clogged pores, or itchy and irritated skin. Beauty blogs have been talking about how apple cider vinegar can be used as a skin toner, citing that its acid pH restores the skin’s acid mantle and improves the skin barrier function.
Some people use apple cider vinegar for acne. Although there is no substantive research on this correlation, people have reported seeing improvements in skin inflammation and breakouts. You can try it out by diluting a small amount of apple cider vinegar with water and rubbing it onto your T-zone area or other dry spots with a cotton ball to help prevent breakouts and minimize blemishes.
5. Apple Cider Vinegar for Hair
One of the largest components of apple cider vinegar is acetic acid, an acidic solution that can match the pH of hair (ranges from 4-5 pH). This allows you to cleanse the hair and scalp without upsetting its pH balance. There have also been claims stating that the application of apple cider vinegar can help seal and protect hair follicles, leading to less hair loss. To date, however, there has been no direct research on apple cider vinegar’s benefits for the hair. Putting apple cider vinegar on your locks has the potential to smooth and strengthen them.
Apple cider vinegar hair rinse
- Combine one cup of water with 2-3 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
- Shampoo and condition your hair as you normally would and then slowly pour the mixture over your entire scalp, allowing it to run down the length of your hair (make sure to close your eyes!)
- Massage the mixture into your scalp and then rinse thoroughly
Check out this article for tips and information on age-proofing your skin: