Does Apple Cider Vinegar Help the Immune System?
You have probably come across apple cider vinegar in the supermarket or grocery store, maybe heard people raving about it online, or perhaps, you have a friend who keeps urging you to use it.
But what is it actually, and what are its benefits? Let’s jump straight into it.
What Is Apple Cider Vinegar and Why It's Important to Include It in Your Diet
Apple cider vinegar (ACV) is vinegar obtained directly from apples. It is apple juice with yeast and bacteria included, which ferments the apple juice and turns it into acetic acid, giving the vinegar a strong smell and sour taste.
ACV is made through a two-step process and contains potassium, antioxidants, and amino acids.
First, apples are crushed and exposed to yeast. The yeast ferments the sugar in the apples and converts them to alcohol.
Second, bacteria are added to continue fermentation that now turns the alcohol from the apples into acetic acid.
Being used as a home remedy for centuries, ACV can be presented in different forms, from small liquid quantities to supplements. So why is it so popular?
Apple Cider Vinegar Benefits
Apart from being used in cooking or as a salad dressing, one of the main reasons marking ACV’s popularity is its vast health properties which are getting more and more attention in the media, making it one of the preferred weight loss tools. Let’s take a closer look at its benefits:
Lowers blood sugar levels
The widely proven benefit of ACV is lowering blood sugar levels and treating type 2 diabetes, which usually gets diagnosed because of exceedingly high blood sugar resulting from low insulin production.
The advantage of lowering blood sugar levels is not only for people with diabetes, though. Researchers believe that high blood sugar levels are the primary cause of numerous chronic illnesses and aging, so taking ACV regularly can help prevent the risk.
Aids weight loss
Weight loss, especially with intermittent fasting, is an effective, healthy, fast, and proven way to shed off pounds.
ACV leaves you feeling fuller and results in you eating fewer calories, helping with weight loss. However, that doesn’t mean you should eat whatever you want – most benefits come in moderation.
Kills harmful bacteria
Are you looking for a natural way to kill harmful bacteria? Apple cider vinegar can help. It is effective in killing pathogens, including bacteria.
The acetic acid in the vinegar is what kills bacteria and prevents them from spreading or multiplying.
Boosts skin health
Eczema is a common skin condition that apple cider vinegar can improve. Naturally, the skin is acidic. Thus, applying apple cider vinegar helps rebalance the skin pH, ultimately improving the skin barrier.
Also, given apple cider vinegar's ability to kill bacteria, it can help prevent certain skin conditions. However, you should also consult with your dermatologist before using ACV, particularly if you have damaged, sensitive skin.
Apple Cider Vinegar Side Effects
If consumed in moderation, apple cider vinegar is 100% safe. However, some of its side effects are:
This is the most common side effect. Apple cider vinegar can result in the erosion of tooth enamel. Therefore, it is advisable to use a straw when drinking it.
Low blood sugar
While this is an advantage, it may double up as a side effect. When used with insulin or diabetes medication, apple cider vinegar could lead to extremely low blood sugar levels.
When taking the tablet version of apple cider vinegar, please exercise caution. Sometimes, these tablets barely contain any element of ACV.
Can I Drink Apple Cider Vinegar Every Day?
There is no specified dosage on how often you should drink ACV. However, it is recommended to drink ACV daily.
You might drink 1–2 teaspoons of diluted apple cider vinegar per day before meals. You can start with small doses (half a teaspoon) and gradually progress to larger amounts (two teaspoons).
Avoid taking too much of it as it can have adverse side effects such as the before mentioned tooth enamel erosion.
How Can I Boost Up My Immune System by Using Apple Cider Vinegar?
ACV can boost your immune system in 3 ways:
- You can adopt taking an ACV morning shot which will improve your gut health.
- You can take your ACV with honey.
If you are unable to drink apple cider vinegar, you can buy the ACV pills. Although they will have significantly lower amounts of Vitamin C, they will boost your immune system as well.
Can Apple Cider Vinegar Help Fight Viruses?
So, how does apple cider vinegar help the immune system? According to research, apple cider vinegar is proven to have antimicrobial properties. It can kill bacteria, fungal infections, and yeast.
However, no evidence shows apple cider vinegar to be effective against fighting influenza. Therefore, it may be ineffective against fighting viruses.