Apple Cider Vinegar: The Ins and Outs

It’s something that your mother or grandmother definitely has lying around somewhere in the pantry. Sour, but with the tartness of fresh apples, it’s a homemade remedy that seems to be able to cure anything from stomachaches to acne. But what does apple cider vinegar really do, and should you be taking it? 

In our previous article on ‘5 Promising Ways to Dramatically Improve Gut Health’, we talked about the importance of being deliberate about what you consume. Like it or not, the foods in our diets have an impact on how our bodies function. It isn’t enough to just be eating three meals a day— you have to know what’s going in those meals, too. 

Today, we’re going to be talking about apple cider vinegar, and whether it’s something you should be integrating into your daily lifestyle. 

What Does ACV Do? 

Apple cider vinegar, sometimes abbreviated as ACV, is a simple package that packs a ton of benefits. You’ve probably seen it presented as a solution to a whole number of regular aches and pains. Dealing with eczema? Dab on a little bit of ACV. Worried about dandruff? Try an apple cider vinegar wash. It’s a tried and tested home remedy that’s remained constant throughout generations. But what does it really do? 

According to Verywell Health, the main component that makes ACV so effective is the acetic acid. Acetic acid can perform a variety of functions in the body. It can help maintain blood sugar levels by blocking the enzymes that help you digest starch, allowing you to reduce fluctuations in blood sugar after eating. 

Vinegar products in general can even help with weight loss, as studies have found that consuming a small amount of vinegar daily can help you feel satiated. And yes, apple cider vinegar has a ton of other benefits when topically applied. 

As mentioned above, it can be a quick and easy solution to many skin concerns like dandruff, sunburn, and even eczema. Everyday Health recommends diluting your ACV before applying it to reduce the chances of chemical burns and other reactions. 

Can You Take Too Much ACV? 

The short answer is, yes, you can take too much apple cider vinegar. Although apple cider vinegar is more alkaline than regular vinegar, you still need to remember that it’s still mildly acidic. Healthline claims working your intake up slowly from smaller does to a maximum of 2 tablespoons or 30 ml per day. This is of course subject to personal tolerance, so don’t max out the dosage if you feel it’s too much for you. 

Because it’s acidic, ACV can also cause some damage to your tooth enamel, so make sure to rinse your mouth out after every dose. Too much apple cider vinegar may even result in bone diseases like osteoporosis, which makes careful consumption imperative. 

How Can You Take ACV? 

ACV should never be taken straight, and should always be diluted with water. The typical ratio should be around 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar to 8 ounces of water. If you want to make it more palatable, you can add honey or ginger to your solution. 

Not sure which ACV brand to buy? Bragg apple cider vinegar is an old favorite, and probably the brand you’re likely to see most often in the grocery store. 100% of their apples are organic and sourced from the U.S., which means you’re getting better quality apples. Not into the liquid stuff? Try Brightcore’s apple cider vinegar organic gummies, which are convenient, vegan, and GMO-free. The benefits of ACV are many, and there’s no harm into integrating it into your diet as long as you check in with your doctor first. 

This simple, unassuming solution has a ton of uses around the house, and should definitely be a staple in your pantry. Whether you’re drinking it, eating it, or applying it, you’re sure to see results.