Over the past few years, there's been a lot of hype about apple cider vinegar. Are the benefits really that amazing or is it just another food trend?
According to our research and -- more importantly -- that of Dr. James Brown from Aston University, apple cider vinegar is just as incredible as health nuts claim.
Fair warning, it doesn't have the best flavor in the world, but the benefits far outweigh the sour taste. Apple cider vinegar is made by combining apples with water and sugar, then allowing the mixture to ferment. From cleaning to weight loss, here are five reasons why everyone should keep a few bottles on hand.
1. Preserving Food
Apple cider vinegar makes a great pickling agent and can also be used as a wash to remove harmful bacteria from fruit and vegetables. If you want to use it as a preservative, be aware that it may darken the color of some foods, such as the ginger above. The taste, however, will be amazing.
2. Hair, Skin, and Nails
Many swear by the restorative properties of apple cider vinegar on their hair, skin, and nails, but the benefits go far beyond beauty. It can also help get rid of dandruff, reduce the size of warts, and even stop a mosquito bite from itching! Be sure to dilute it with water, however, as too much can cause redness and irritation.
One of the most popular uses of apple cider vinegar is helping to control diabetes. Because apple cider vinegar absorbs starches, drinking a bit before a meal can reduce the amount of sugar that is consumed while eating breads, pastas, and other wheat-based products. That said, check with your doctor before beginning this regimen on your own. As dietitian Carol Johnston said, "If you're taking a diabetes drug, the vinegar could amplify the effects of your meds and your doctor might want to adjust your dosage."
4. Weight Loss
Apple cider vinegar isn't a miracle weight-loss solution. However, it does absorb starches, which can help you enjoy some of your favorite foods without the guilt. It also makes a great addition to homemade salad dressing and marinades, making it easy to incorporate into your already healthy diet.
5. All-Natural Cleaner
We all want a clean house, but spraying chemicals everywhere isn't exactly great for ourselves, kids, or pets. The solution? Soak lemon peels in apple cider vinegar for three weeks, then funnel the solution into a spray bottle. This will work on stove tops and glass, but if you want to extend the all-natural cleaning to other areas of the house, click here to find 37 solutions that include everything from keyboards to hardwood floors.