Thursday, September 10, 2009

What Are The Health Benefits Of Apple Cider Vinegar?

Is drinking apple cider vinegar going to improve your health? Fix your gout? Balance your blood sugar? Many people are devoted to their daily shot of apple cider vinegar. According to hearsay… apple cider vinegar is a cure all for a multitude of complaints such as arthritis, poor digestion and dandruff. But what is fact and what is fiction?

The most famous proponent of the benefit of drinking apple cider vinegar goes way back! Hippocrates claimed it would cure many common ailments including ear infections and skin rash. No modern research has yet verified these two assertions.

However, recent studies do confirm that there are some significant health benefits of apple cider vinegar.

It improves insulin sensitivity and management of type two diabetes – How? By taking apple cider vinegar BEFORE MEALS which lowers your ‘glycemic index’ when eating carbohydrates. It’s like magic.

Better digestion - The acetic acid in apple cider vinegar helps prevent necessary gastric acid, mainly Hydrochloric acid, from leaving the stomach too soon. Food may be more easily digested with fewer unpleasant gassy problems.

Appetite control and weight loss – This alone is worth the price of a bottle. Several trials show that drinking apple cider vinegar BEFORE a meal has the benefit of curbing appetite. Participants noted an increased feeling of fullness and less desire for 'a little more'. Taking apple cider vinegar may support weight loss, in combination with exercise and sensible eating.

Here are some of the more likely stories about apple cider vinegar's healing powers, all based on historical folk remedies and anecdotal evidence.

Treatment of over-acidic conditions of the body, such as arthritis or gout - Although apple cider vinegar is acidic, it leaves an overall alkaline residue after digestion which is healthier for you.

Assisting in the treatment of yeast infections and candida - Although some standard vinegars may exacerbate ‘yeast infections’, women have found douching in dilution of apple cider vinegar to be helpful when treating thrush. Taking apple cider vinegar internally may reduce candida symptoms. It’s cheap and it’s worth a try.

Reducing swelling - apparently apple cider vinegar can REDUCE bruising quickly. Apply vinegar to a cloth and hold to injury for at least an hour. Alleviating dandruff - apple cider vinegar may be a helpful natural remedy for dandruff, because the acids in the vinegar kill the fungus causing chemical imbalances in the skin of the scalp.

How do you get the benefits of apple cider vinegar?

1) Use only raw unpasteurized apple cider vinegar, available in several varieties from all good health food stores. Unpasteurized apple cider vinegar is safe because the acid levels will kill unfavorable bacteria. The living vinegar provides copious quantities of enzymes, malic and tartaric acids, and valuable minerals, including potassium. The 'dead' supermarket varieties of vinegar will NOT contain enzymes and a mere fraction of the minerals of living vinegar.

2) Shake the bottle prior to use to disperse the threads of the apple cider vinegar producing 'bug'. These threads are the living part of the cider and may look unappealing until shaken up.

3) Take 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar (plus 1 teaspoon of honey if you prefer) in ½ a glass of pH water prior to meals.

4) If you not planning to eat, brush your teeth AFTER taking the vinegar. Too much apple cider vinegar has been found to damage tooth enamel due to its acidity. Just make sure to rinse after drinking it.

5) You can buy pH tests at the pharmacy, and test your pH. If you have an acidic result, apple cider vinegar may be especially appropriate for your system.

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