While it may not be known to many, apple cider vinegar is a secret weapon that has been used for generations to boost immunity, aid in digestion, disinfect, and even add shine to your locks. A versatile product made simply from fermented apples, it’s a natural and inexpensive alternative to a plethora of products. Keep a bottle of apple cider vinegar (ACV) in your home (make sure to buy organic, unfiltered ACV with the “mother” inside to reap all the benefits) and solve all (okay, most) of life’s conundrums. With hundreds of uses, here is a list of the most common ways to use apple cider vinegar at home.
Immunity: The “mother” in apple cider vinegar is a variety of bacteria that works as a probiotic. Research has shown probiotics to boost immunity, which may be the magic behind ACV boosting immunity. When feeling under the weather, dilute 1-2 tablespoons of ACV in water (add a spoonful of honey, if desired), mix, and sip. The concoction will result in a shorter cold/sickness and prevent future colds.
Digestion: ACV aids in the digestion process due to the “mother” bacteria acting as a probiotic. A healthy gut is essential to overall health and probiotics work to create that healthy gut so that proper digestion can occur. Add 1-2 tablespoons of ACV to a glass of water and drink a few times per week (can also be done daily) for optimal gut health.
Cleaning: Similarly to using white vinegar as a cleaning agent, apple cider vinegar also works as a disinfectant. Dilute with water in a spray bottle and use as an all-purpose cleaner for countertops, sinks, tables, and bathroom surfaces for a glimmering home! No need to worry about a lingering smell of vinegar- it disintegrates once the solution is wiped from the surface.
Hair Rinse: Dry and cold conditions wreak havoc on hair. Add shine and shimmer by using ACV as a hair rinse. Dull hair results from a higher pH level, and since ACV is acidic, it can be used to balance the pH level. Mix 5 parts water, one part ACV in a bottle and massage into hair and scalp. Let it sit for 10 minutes and rinse to reveal shiny, beautiful hair.
Food Preservation: ACV can be used, and has been used for hundreds of years, for pickling foods. Vinegar makes the food more acidic which kills any bacteria and allows for safe eating.
Washing Fruits and Vegetables: Rather than just using water, washing fruits and vegetables with apple cider vinegar adds antibacterial agents for even cleaner eating.
Salad Dressing: Instead of drinking ACV, another option is to eat it! Add on top of salad as a dressing to add a tangy flavor to tasteless greens.
Marinade: A healthier alternative to marinating meats in barbeque sauce, or other heavy, fatty sauces, is to use ACV. It adds a sweet and tangy flavor with much fewer calories and added health benefits.
Mouthwash: The antibacterial properties in ACV works in a variety of avenues, including oral hygiene. ACV as a mouthwash deep-cleans the mouth and combats bad breath without the harsh chemical found in commercial mouthwashes.
Facial Toner: Similarly to the hair rinse, dull skin can be refreshed by using ACV. Toner, in addition to brightening skin, can reduce redness and eliminate lines and wrinkles. Mix 3 parts water with 1 part ACV and apply to face with a cotton ball.
Acne Treatment: ACV approves the appearance of skin in many ways, due in part to its antibacterial properties. Reduce redness and clean pores of acne-prone skin by adding diluted ACV to a cotton ball and applying to skin.
Wart Removal: Soak a cotton ball in ACV and apply on top of wart, fastening with a band aid. The ACV will aid in removing wart and the process can be repeated until the wart is completely gone.
Skin Tag Removal: Using the same process as wart removal, skin tags can also be removed through the use of ACV.
Softening Skin: Add a small amount of ACV to a warm bath and allow the solution to absorb into skin, it will leave it feeling silky smooth. This is an especially great tip for the winter season!
Sunburn Treatment: Diluted ACV applied to sunburned skin will reduce redness and the burning sensation. It can also assist in healing the burn faster than traditional sunburn treatment creams.
Bug Spray: Flies in the house are a nuisance that ACV can relieve. Ants and fleas are also deterred by ACV, so spray in infested areas to eliminate the bugs.
Weed Killer: Green thumbs will be glad to hear that ACV prevents weeds in gardens and lawns. For a much cheaper and less toxic way to kill stubborn weeds that ruin aesthetic, spray lawn with ACV (no water needed).
Bleach: Traditional bleach is harmful to linens, as well as to personal health. Use ¼ cup of ACV (in addition to laundry detergent) in washing machine to brighten whites.
Apple cider vinegar is a simple product that can be used to fight colds, kill weeds, and brighten clothes, face, and hair. The list goes on and on, bearing the question, “What can’t it do”? One bottle with array of uses just waiting to be discovered. How will you use apple cider vinegar?
By Robyn Chopin for RetreatHub