Apple cider vinegar has gotten some good press in the last several years, but is apple cider vinegar really good for you? If they are to be believed, many proponents claim that apple cider vinegar has numerous benefits. So, what exactly are apple cider vinegar benefits for health?
Apple Cider Vinegar for Health
Vinegar use dates back as far as 8,000 years ago when it was used primarily as a preservative and condiment. Around 400 B.C., Hippocrates began prescribing vinegar to treat a number of medical ailments.
As to apple cider vinegar, it had been a traditional home remedy for many years before D.C Jarvis M.D. published his book Folk Medicine: A Vermont Doctor’s Guide to Good Health in 1958. Today, devotees of the acidic drink believe that there are many apple cider vinegar benefits.
Purported Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is said to be helpful with diabetes and blood sugar control. There is some limited research to suggest that this may be true; however, it is still up for debate. Purportedly, research indicates that drinking diluted apple cider vinegar keeps blood sugar levels in check. True or not, what is certain is that the ingestion of apple cider vinegar does not reverse diabetes.
Another ascertain with regards to the benefits of apple cider vinegar is that it can help improve cholesterol and triglycerides. However, any studies have been primarily done on animals so at this juncture there is no solid evidence to back up this claim. The better way to improve blood fat levels is to exercise and eat nutritionally.
No doubt the current popularity of taking apple cider vinegar for health reasons is due to the claim that it promotes weight loss. Advocates claim that drinking it before meals helps curb appetite as well as burn fat. The fact is that apple cider vinegar does not burn fat, but it may help to curb appetite. The reason for this may have more to do with the associated upset stomach or queasiness after drinking diluted vinegar.
A better way to use apple cider vinegar to reduce weight is to use it in cooking. Replace condiments or dilute purchased salad dressings with apple cider vinegar. Use vinegar to marinade meats and seafood and flavor sautéed veggies with apple cider vinegar and olive oil.
Is Apple Cider Vinegar Good for You?
Other purported apple cider benefits include the ability to reduce inflammation and the symptoms of arthritis, reduce eczema flare ups, leg cramps, sinus issues, anti-aging elixir, and even help with split ends.
If you believe that apple cider has health benefits, proceed with caution. Remember that apple cider vinegar is extremely acidic and can erode your tooth enamel. It can also irritate the throat and increase stomach acidity. Some researchers contend that drinking apple cider vinegar puts a strain on kidneys and bones. It may also increase levels of potassium and interact with medication and supplements.
Be sure to talk to your doctor before implementing apple cider vinegar for health purposes and always dilute apple cider vinegar prior to drinking. Also, if you do decide to ingest apple cider vinegar for possible health benefits, use the liquid vinegar, not the pills, which often do not even contain vinegar.
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Amy Grant has been gardening for 30 years and writing for 15. A professional chef and caterer, Amy's area of expertise is culinary gardening.