Is Apple Cider Vinegar Actually Good for You?
In the web of natural health remedies, it is hard to find an ailment that apple cider vinegar can’t help treat.
Apple cider vinegar is claimed by many as a miracle remedy for everything from soothing digestion to clearing acne.
Despite the popularity, and longstanding legend of the vinegars’ use, we wanted to investigate if the science has been able to back up the main claims. Including whether it can be beneficial in the treatment of cervical dysplasia.
What Is Apple Cider Vinegar?
Apple cider vinegar is a fermented apple juice.
It is made by combing a mixture of chopped raw apples, sugar, and water in a sterilized glass jar for several weeks. As the mixture ferments the sugar gets converted into alcohol and acetic acid.
The vinegar can be added to salads and sauces for an added flavor punch. Wellness shops and juice bars have also turned apple cider vinegar into immune shots, but you need to be a bit braver to go for them!
Perceived Health Benefits
The health benefits of the vinegar are thought to come from acetic acid, which has been shown to possess antifungal and antiviral properties.
The acid has been studied in vitro for its role in inducing tumor necrosis factor (TNF), a pro-inflammatory immune molecule that facilitates cell survival, proliferation, and death.
Acetic acid has been linked to increased cognitive functioning. The acetic acid and bacteria found in traditional foods like apple cider vinegar have a unique and highly pure membrane lipid component called sphingolipids that are also components of brain tissue. Ingestion of sphingolipid-derivatives find improvements in cognitive function.
Apple cider vinegar also contains probiotics that form during fermentation. When consumed, these bacteria supply the body with beneficial microbes important for gut function and our overall health.
The strongest evidence around the health impacts of apple cider vinegar comes from its impact on cardiovascular health and diabetes. The vinegar may protect against heart disease due to its chlorogenic acid content. It may also have a positive effect on blood lipid levels, making it an attractive addition for managing hyperlipidemia and regulating blood sugar.
However, the research supporting apple cider vinegar in other areas like improving constipation, weight loss, acid reflux, teeth whitening, and acne remains anecdotal. More research is needed to verify whether actual health benefits exist.
Apple Cider Vinegar and HPV
Likewise, there are no studies to date investigating the role of apple cider vinegar on cervical dysplasia.
Anecdotal evidence has claimed apple cider vinegar can be used topically as a treatment for warts. The remedy is thought to be due to the acid, which burns the wart and causes it to peel off from the skin.
But again, no studies have specifically looked at whether application of the vinegar improves clearance rate of warts and elimination of HPV.
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Should You Consume Apple Cider Vinegar?
Apple cider vinegar can be a tasty addition to salad dressings, sauces, and meals. It adds a pungent flavor and delicious taste.
Health wise, incorporating the vinegar into your regime can add some extra nutrients, probiotics, and beneficial compounds from the acids to potentially boost brain power and keep your blood glucose in check.
But the vinegar is not a saving grace to your health problems. Incorporating more nutrient dense and whole foods in your diet, getting enough exercise, reducing stress, getting quality sleep, etc. is likely to have a greater impact on your health than an extra tablespoon of vinegar.
I also wouldn’t overdo it on the vinegar. Apple cider vinegar is very acidic and difficult to consume in large quantities. The acid can damage the enamel on your teeth and upset the stomach.
Topical application of the vinegar can also be rough on the skin. When applied to the face and neck, vinegar should always be diluted to avoid irritation.