Friday, March 23, 2007

Apple Cider Vinegar

OK, here we go. Promised post about my adventures with Apple Cider Vinegar. There seems to be no limit to the number of websites on the many and varied benefits of vinegar for all types of things. There seems to be almost no limit to the number of different kinds of vinegar available on the market either. LOL.

12 months ago I'd never even heard of Apple Cider Vinegar. Now there's a rarely a day when I don't pull the bottle out of my pantry. I still use white vinegar in the washing machine and for cleaning at times but to be honest, I prefer the scent of the apple cider vinegar. And for health, it seems to be the prefered one to use.

HAIR: I started by experimenting with apple cider vinegar with water in a spray bottle as a conditioner. From the first use I really loved it but wanted to give it enough time to be really sure I liked it. 6 months later I'm still loving using it. To my latest bottle I have added a few drops of rosemary essential oil. To be honest I don't think it's really added any necessary effect to the condition of my hair. If anything, I have had trouble with too much oil (I tend to have oily roots and dry ends). However, if you're the kind of person who really can't stand the smell of vinegar, it does cover the smell quite nicely (as long as you like the smell of rosemary of course). I tend to mostly spray it into the ends of my hair as my roots really don't need the conditioning. I also spray it directly onto my scalp underneath at the back which is where I can tend to get itchy. It helps with the dryness and itchiness of my scalp. If I have a particularly dry and itchy scalp, it's best to spray it in before I shower so that it can work on the skin for at least 10-15 minutes before being rinsed out.

Now if I can just get the rest of the family using it, I'll be able to strike conditioner off my shopping list for good! :-) At the moment I don't mind though as they're gradually using up all the different bottles of conditioner I had on hand. DH has really short hair and only uses conditioner very occasionally and the kids hair gets washed once a week so we're really not using a lot of conditioner anyway.

I'm currently experimenting with baking soda as a shampoo. I've been doing it on and off now for several months and haven't yet formed an opinion on whether it's something I'll continue with for the long term. Part of my problem is that I forget to put it in my hair before I jump in the shower so end up using regular (well a health shop, all natural ingredients) shampoo. I'll blog more on that down the track if I ever come to a conclusion one way or another. One thing I will recommend is using it at least occasionally as it does give your hair a really good clean. Depending on how often you wash your hair as to whether it's cleaning powers are too strong to be used for every single wash. Someone did warn me that it can strip any colour from your hair. I currently have foils in my hair and haven't noticed this problem but it's something to be wary of if you do have colour in your hair (that baking soda may strip it out).


COOKING: If you scroll down a few posts, you'll find a recipe for an apple slice using apple cider vinegar. The original recipe called for white vinegar but as I was converting it from a chocolate cake to an apple slice I decided it made sense to use apple cider vinegar.


SALAD DRESSING: I was using a fat free french dressing on my lunch-time salads but started to find it a bit too sweet so converted to a capful of apple cider vinegar. The health benefits of regular use of apple cider vinegar are many and varied (I'll list some at the end of this post).


HOT DRINK: One easy way I find to include apple cider vinegar in my diet is as a hot drink. Just add 1-2 capfuls of apple cider vinegar and a teaspoon of honey to a mug then pour in boiling water and stir. It takes a little bit to get used to but really isn't too bad as a drink. It's especially good if you're developing a sore throat to kill the bugs and help your body fight whatever is causing the sore throat. The last 2 times I've started developing a sore throat I've used this and gotten rid of the problem within 24 hours.


VITAMINS AND MINERALS IN APPLE CIDER VINEGAR

Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Vitamin A, Vitamin B1, Vitamin B2, Vitamin B6, Provitamin beta-carotene, Vitamin P

Potassium, Calcium, Magnesium, Phosphorous, Chlorine, Sodium, Sulfur, Copper, Iron, Silicon, Fluorine

Source: http://www.anyvitamins.com/apple-cider-vinegar-info.htm


SOME OF THE HEALTH BENEFITS OF APPLE CIDER VINEGAR

Assisting weight loss by boosting a sluggish metabolism and helping with the healthy functioning of the bowel

Reducing cholesterol, lowering blood pressure, reducing calcification in arteries

Assisting with fluid regulation in cells, reducing fluid retention, reducing excess sodium in the body

Magnesium and other minerals are important for good bone health and to reduce muscle cramps

Assists healthy functioning of the liver, kidney and gall bladder

These are just a few of the benefits that have been found. If you do an internet search on apple cider vinegar you're sure to find many many more. As with all things there are varied opinions and I have no medical background. I just figure a little bit in my diet certainly can't hurt.

8 comments:

Kez said...

I've been using just plain soap to wash my hair and vinegar as conditioner - seems to work well and a lot easier than bicarb!

lightening said...

Have you ever had trouble with a dry scalp Kerrie? That's my concern. I tend not to use soap at all because I have fairly dry skin and I find it makes it worse. It would be a lot more convenient than bicarb though.

Kez said...

I don't but there are some people on the Simple Savings site doing the same thing that have said it's been good for their dry scalp. Might be worth a try.

Corinne said...

Goodness, I didn't think of any of those uses! I've got nearly a litre in the cupboard I haven't known what to do with, now I do LOL.

Thanks :) (and hi!)

Dollfinn_Blue said...

Right, off to try the hot cider drink, feeling a little off, and metabolism certainly sluggish at best.

Will try the cider on my hair also, has a permenant blueblack in it at the moment, so will tell you if it strips it. Rosemary sounds lovely also.

Might try it on DBF head as he gets bad itchy scalp, part of it dry and flaky the other part oily and it drives him batty as most commercial products only work on one or the other.

Thanks Heaps!!

emma said...

Thanks, Jodi - just 'enjoying' a hot apple cider drink now (it actually isn't too bad once you get past the smell). Do you happen to know why the apple cider vinegar is 'good' but the white vinegar is 'bad'?

lightening said...

I don't know if it's a case of white vinegar being "bad" so much as apple cider vinegar being "better". I've heard reference made to the quote "an apple a day keeps the doctor away" so some people are speculating that the source of apple cider vinegar has some impact on it's health benefits. No idea if they're right in that speculation or not. It could be as simple as that being the most common vinegar around at the time it was used for health benefits and it's just "stuck". You never know the origins of these things. I find it much more palatable than white vinegar though.
Jodi

lightening said...

Well I decided to give the soap a try but it did make my scalp itchy. It may depend on what people are already using as to whether the soap makes their scalp more or less itchy than their regular shampoo. Having said that, I have an extremely sensitive scalp. So much so that the gentlest of natural shampoos still seem to cause me trouble. The vinegar keeps it to a bearable level most of the time though.

Good suggestion though. It certainly made my hair feel nice and clean. :-)

Jodi