What is Apple Cider Vinegar?
Apple cider vinegar (ACV) is a popular home remedy used for different purposes including cooking and the treatment of fungi infections and open wounds. Its usage dates back centuries. Backed by modern research and science, is it is one of the most resourceful and sought-after products around.
Apple cider vinegar or cider vinegar is vinegar made from fermented apple juice. It is prepared by crushing apples, then squeezing out the juice. Bacteria and yeast are then added to the liquid to start the alcoholic fermentation process which converts the sugar to alcohol. The fermentation process creates a compound called acetic acid, which is well known for its antibacterial and antifungal properties.
Raw/unfiltered unpasteurized ACV contains a cloudy substance called the ‘Mother’. It is formed by natural enzymes during fermentation and is perfectly safe to consume.
When we talk about apple cider vinegar what readily comes to mind is the liquid oral form of it which is displayed prominently in stores and promoted heavily online. Apple cider vinegar pills are just as effective. They contain a dehydrated form of the vinegar. Some may even contain ginger and cayenne pepper also.
Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar does not contain many vitamins and minerals but it contains high acetic acid and malic acid and vinegar. It is classified under foods termed ‘prebiotics.’ We often think of bacteria as bad and harmful, but there are certain bacteria that our bodies need to function properly. Prebiotic foods are foods that provide these live bacteria and yeast.
Here are other benefits that ACV provides
- Regulation of blood sugar
Diabetics is one of the leading causes of death in the world. The importance of maintaining a moderate blood sugar level cannot be over-emphasized. A recent diabetic study conducted by Japanese scientists indicates that vinegar ingestion at bedtime moderates waking glucose concentration.
Another study in 2017 found that consuming ACV at mealtimes helped lower post-meal blood glucose and insulin levels.
People with Type 2 diabetics will especially find ACV useful in regulating their sugar level. It is also recommended for everyone else who wants a healthy sugar level. When insulin is regulated, it makes you feel fuller, which goes hand-in-hand with weight loss properties.
- Lowers blood pressure
Studies were carried out on rats with high blood pressure to ascertain if ACV really could reduce blood pressure. The rats were fed either ACV or acetic acids. Rats that received this treatment showed a significant reduction in blood pressure and lower levels of renin in the blood.
Another study also shows that vinegar blocks the enzyme that raises blood pressure.
- Weight Loss
Do you find yourself battling weight issues constantly? Wondering why you are working out and dieting but nothing seems to work? ACV could hold some answers for you.
ACV supports weight loss. One of the ways it helps you to do this is by regulating your insulin. This ensures that you feel fuller and eat fewer calories. This was proven by a 2005 study by EJCN (European Journal of Clinical Nutrition).
A Japanese study conducted with obese people showed that daily consumption of apple cider vinegar led to reduced belly fat. Participants who consumed a daily beverage containing vinegar had lower body weight, BMI, and visceral fat, compared to those who didn’t. ACV is also known to aid other metabolic syndromes. The acetic acid in it has been attributed to reduced starch digestion. This process makes sure your body stores little fat.
Apple cider is 94% water and 1% carbohydrates. It has very low calories itself.
- Lowers cholesterol and reduces the risk of heart diseases
High cholesterol and triglycerides are bad for the body. It keeps you at risk of heart diseases. They put you at risk of having a heart attack, heart disease, or stroke.
Studies show that apple cider vinegar lowers cholesterol and triglyceride levels as well as blood pressure which is a major risk factor for heart disease.
- Aging and skin health
Washing/cleaning of the face with ACV is a local remedy that most people apply to keep their skin healthy. Diluted cider vinegar is usually used in a facewash or toner and then applied to the face.
Given its antibacterial properties, cider vinegar could help prevent skin infections like acne, and eczema. These antimicrobial properties help to improve the skin’s defense and prevent infections. The skin is slightly acidic and taking ACV pills will rebalance the natural pH of the skin.
One advantage of taking the pills for your skin issue is that you don’t have to worry about keeping to a routine to maintain your skin’s pH balance. The pills are effective, working from the inside.
Researchers believe that high levels of sugar in the body are a major cause of aging. Moderating your sugar level is something ACV helps you with.