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When a bland salad needs a little extra flavor, many of us reach for a bottle of vinegar. When looking to improve our appearance or clean up around the house, however, most of us wouldn’t think of reaching for the same container! Strange as it may sound, apple cider vinegar can be a particularly versatile household resource. In addition to spicing up dishes and drinks, this powerful liquid can be used to improve one’s health and tidy up around the home.
Do you have a bottle of apple cider vinegar sitting on your kitchen shelf? If not, this list will convince you to purchase it the next time you’re out shopping!
#1: Super-Charge Your Skincare Routine
When used in moderation, apple cider vinegar can be the perfect treatment for a number of skin ailments. Many find that diluted vinegar improves skin conditions ranging from acne to eczema. By applying cotton balls soaked in ACV to warts and skin tags, overnight treatments can eventually lead to the disappearance of these unwanted growths. When diluted with water or mixed with other liquids, apple cider vinegar can also work well as a general skin toner, facial wash, or makeup remover. If your skin could use some improvement, there’s a good chance that apple cider vinegar will be of use.
#2: Help Out Your Hair
Though not everyone is a fan of its scent, apple cider vinegar is also a great alternative to store-bought haircare products. Adding a touch of ACV to one’s shampoo or soaking one’s scalp in a 50/50 water-vinegar solution can alter the pH of the scalp, reducing the amount of dandruff-causing bacteria growing at the hair’s roots. A small amount of vinegar mixed with water also makes for a great conditioner and detangler. A spoonful of vinegar just might make your scalp happier and healthier.
#3: Control Your Blood Sugar
Whether you’re diabetic or not, high blood sugar levels are bad for your health. A touch of apple cider vinegar, however, can prevent your blood sugar from spiking. Studies at numerous universities have shown that those with insulin resistance had lower blood sugar when consuming apple cider vinegar and water before a high-carb meal. Diabetics who consumed two tablespoons of vinegar before bed even had lower blood glucose levels in the morning. To improve insulin sensitivity, consider drinking diluted apple cider vinegar.
#4: Improve Your Food
In addition to making a great dressing, apple cider vinegar can be used to spice up a number of dishes. Mixing one tablespoon of ACV with a cup of milk can create a practical buttermilk substitute, for instance. Pouring a little bit of this magic liquid into beverages ranging from hot teas to cold smoothies will add flavor to your drinks and boost your metabolism, too. Add ACV to baked beans for some cidery flavor, or pickle vegetables ranging from cucumbers to radishes to squash by mixing vinegar with salt, water, and spices of your choice. Flavorful and low in calories, apple cider vinegar is a great way to pep up almost any meal.
#5: Entrap Pesky Fruit Flies
Fruit flies can be bothersome, particularly during the warm summer months. Instead of running around with a fly swatter all day, simply pour a little apple cider vinegar into a cup and add a few drops of dish soap. By adding soap, the surface tension of the liquid will be broken, causing the flies to sink. Soon, your kitchen will be free of these troublesome pests!
#6: Clean Up Your Home
Apple cider vinegar has a number of household uses. Mixed with water, ACV makes a great all-purpose household cleaner, deodorizing surfaces and killing off bacteria. When mixed with baking soda, ACV can be used to scrub away dirt and grime, too. This mixture is also ideal for clearing out clogged drains and dirty garbage disposals.
This miracle liquid can also get your laundry even cleaner. A little ACV can be used as a fabric softener or to rinse a load of laundry. When mixed with baking soda, it can also be used to brighten white clothing or to clean cloth diapers. You might just need to buy an extra bottle of vinegar to keep in your laundry room!
#7: Battle Stubborn Belly Fat
Who would have thought that adding something to your diet could help you lose weight? Research has proven, however, that apple cider vinegar can actually improve the effectiveness of your diet. When consumed before carbohydrate-dense meals, for instance, vinegar has been shown to increase feelings of satiety, leading individuals to consume approximately 250 fewer calories per day. When paired with healthy eating and exercise, dieters who consumed 2 tablespoons (30 milliliters) of ACV per day were shown to lose an additional 3.7 pounds (1.7 kilograms) over the course of three months. To turbo-charge your dieting efforts, add a splash of vinegar to your lunch or dinner.
#8: Protect Your Pets
Apple cider vinegar is an affordable and safe way to keep your pets healthy and free from harm. When mixed with water, ACV makes a great flea spray and ear mite treatment. Some pet owners claim that this mixture can reduce eye conjunctivitis in dogs, too. Mixed with water and baby shampoo, vinegar can also be used to make a simple, odor-eliminating pet shampoo. Consumed in small amounts orally, ACV may also prevent parasites from taking up residence in your pet’s digestive tract. Sometimes, the strong scent and flavor of ACV may come in handy, too. Many cats, for instance, dislike the scent, making it a good tool for keeping feline friends out of certain parts of the home.
Before using ACV with your pet, however, it is best to consult your veterinarian for guidance and advice. Only your vet can tell you whether or not apple cider vinegar is the best tool for managing your pet’s health.
#9: Improve Oral Hygiene
For those who can handle its powerful taste, apple cider vinegar can be an affordable tool for maintaining good oral health. Mixing a tablespoon of ACV with 1 cup (240 milliliters) of water can make for an effective mouthwash. Many individuals have successfully used ACV to treat bad breath, too. Applying small amounts of apple cider vinegar to the teeth may also reduce the appearance of stains on the teeth. Individuals should remember to rinse their mouths out well afterwards, however, as the acid in the vinegar also has the potential to damage the enamel of the teeth.
To prolong the life of your toothbrush, mix 1/2 cup (120 milliliters) of water with two tablespoons of vinegar and two tablespoons of baking soda. By soaking your toothbrush in this mixture, you can successfully clean and sterilize the head of your brush.
#10: Keep Your Heart Healthy & Cholesterol Low
A number of studies, most completed with animal test subjects, seem to indicate that apple cider vinegar can improve the body’s functioning in regards to heart health. Risk factors for heart disease, such as obesity, high cholesterol levels, and high triglycerides all seem to be improved by adding ACV to one’s diet. Though the research isn’t conclusive, some studies also indicate that apple cider vinegar can reduce blood pressure, too, allowing the heart, liver, and kidneys to function more optimally. It seems there’s very little apple cider vinegar can’t do!
Though apple cider vinegar has traditionally been viewed as a kitchen staple, this versatile liquid also holds a valuable place in the bathroom, laundry room, living room, and beyond. The next time you’re looking to clean something, flavor a dish, or improve your health, run a quick online search to see if apple cider vinegar might help. The answer just might be “yes!”
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