Looking for a holistic lift to your self-care regime? Look no further than this humble vinegar. Not only will it benefit your health, but it could leave you with shiny hair, a fresh home and the whitest smile of your life…
What is Apple Cider Vinegar?
Vinegar dates back to at least 3000 BC, when it was used for both culinary and medicinal purposes. Hippocrates used vinegar to manage wounds, and since then people have used it to treat all manner of maladies, from poison ivy to croup.
Thanks to its antimicrobial and antioxidant properties, apple cider vinegar boasts plenty of nourishing benefits. Evidence suggests it may even help weight loss, reduce cholesterol and lower blood sugar levels.
To reap the rewards, you’ll want to use raw, unpasteurised, unfiltered apple cider vinegar. This type comes with a substance called 'the mother', which is made up of health-boosting strands of proteins, enzymes and friendly bacteria. If you’d like to get in on the magic, check out our Apple Cider Vinegar Product Page.
How is Apple Cider Vinegar Made?
Creating apple cider vinegar is a three-step process. First the apples are crushed and the juice extracted. Next, the juice is fermented from either airborne yeasts or, in commercial production added yeast, which turns the liquid into apple cider. The last step, a second round of fermentation, converts the alcohol into vinegar.
What is Apple Crider Vinegar used for?
Stocking a pantry with apple cider vinegar is a great way to look after yourself this winter. And as you'll discover, there are a number of ways to enjoy its benefits…
· Eat it: One of the simplest ways to consume apple cider vinegar is to cook with it. Popularly used in vinaigrette salad dressing, it can also be used to pep up soups, sauces and marinades.
· Drink it: Want the benefits pronto? Whip up a quick tonic by diluting 15ml of apple cider vinegar in 500ml of water. If you can’t handle the taste (it’s certainly unique) try turning it into a tea by combing two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar, two tablespoons of lemon, one tablespoon of cinnamon and a pinch of cayenne pepper in a mug of warm water. Sore throat? Chuck in a tablespoon of honey to soothe your throat while the apple cider vinegar fights any bacteria.
· Preserve with it: Just like other vinegars, apple cider vinegar makes an excellent preservative by making the food more acidic and killing any food-ruining bacteria.
Domestic Use of Apple Cider Vinegar
· Clean your home: Vinegar can help kill pathogens, including bacteria. So, if you're keen to move away from harsh cleaning products, its antibacterial properties make apple cider vinegar a great choice. Create an all-purpose cleaner by combining two cups of water with one cup of apple cider vinegar. This concoction can be used to clean your kitchen and bathroom, make your windows sparkle and, if combined with baking soda, even clean your drains. While the smell of vinegar lingers, it will fade as it dries. Not keen? Add a few drops of essential oil to make your blend fragrant.
· Wash fruit and vegetables: Remove unwanted pesticide residue on your fresh produce by washing it with a mix of water and apple cider vinegar. While it’s not known if this removes more pesticides than just water, washing food in vinegar does help remove bacteria like E. coli and Salmonella.
· Make your hair shiny: Remove product build-up and add shine to your hair with an apple cider vinegar hair rinse. Mix one-part apple cider vinegar with one-part water, then pour over your hair. Leave it for a few minutes and then wash out with water. And don’t panic - the fish and chip smell will quickly fade.
· Use as a facial toner: Some people have success using apple cider vinegar as a facial toner to help combat acne. Dilute one-part apple cider vinegar with two parts water, even more if you have sensitive skin. Apply this mixture to freshly washed skin, before applying moisturiser.
· Natural deodorant: Applying diluted apple cider vinegar is used by some people as a homemade alternative to deodorant. You might want to experiment with this one at home first!
· Remove teeth stains: Pesky stain ruining your smile? Try mixing two parts apple cider vinegar with one-part baking soda to create a natural tooth-whitening paste. Apply to your teeth and then rinse with water. Be careful and avoid long-term use, due to its acidity it may encourage enamel decay.
Bizarre uses of Apple Cider Vinegar
· Discourage fleas: Does Fido want in on the action? Not a problem. Spray one-part vinegar and one-part water on your pet’s fur and allow the mixture to saturate the hair. While it won't get rid of a current flea problem, it's said to discourage one as fleas don't like the smell or taste of vinegar (who knew they were picky eaters).
· Trap fruit flies: Fleas might turn their nose up at it, but fruit flies go mad for the stuff! So, if you’ve got an infestation, set out a cup of the vinegar with a squirt of dish soap (so any pesky flies sink).
· Boil a perfect egg: If your poached eggs are misshapen, bedraggled disappointments, add a splash of apple cider vinegar to the water. When exposed to acidic liquid, the whites’ firm up quicker which means they'll retain their shape better.
· Bake fluffy cakes: If your cakes would make Mary Berry wince, consider adding a dash of apple cider vinegar to the batter. The acid in the vinegar reacts with the baking soda in the mixture and produces carbon dioxide, these little gas bubbles help the cake rise as it bakes.
· Relieve a headache: Anecdotally, a compress made from a cold washcloth dipped in apple cider vinegar is said to ease headaches.
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