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Last updated on March 24, 2020

Everyone should have a bottle of raw, organic, unfiltered and unpasteurized apple cider vinegar (aka, ACV) in their home! It’s a multi-use vinegar for both internal and external personal use (see here for our beginner's guide to ACV), and it’s great for a couple of household chores.

ACV, when made from organic apples and is unheated, unfiltered and unpasteurized, is full of beneficial enzymes, pectin, and trace minerals. Here's exactly how to naturally take care of your body (and home!) with this simple, inexpensive, and safe product.

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Internal Use

1. Mouthwash

This is a wonderful home remedy for tooth stains and canker sores. The ACV can help kill bacteria1 in the mouth, making it a viable mouth rinse treatment for painful canker sores.

Mix 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar with 1/4 cup of water. Swish it around in your mouth for 15 to 20 seconds and then spit out. Or, you can swallow it if you want to receive the other health benefits of consuming apple cider vinegar. The important thing to note is that you will immediately need to brush your teeth after each use of the apple cider vinegar mouthwash. ACV is an acid and will need to be rinsed away after use!

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2. Digestive aid

Taking a tablespoon or two of organic ACV in a glass of water twice daily can aid your body’s detoxification and elimination channels2. It’s best to take your first "dose" in the early morning, and then again after supper.

My morning routine: I drink 1 tablespoon of ACV in 2 tablespoons of water after a quick gargle. I follow that with 1 teaspoon of raw honey, then I do my oil pull.

External Use

1. Hair

I grew up using apple cider vinegar as a hair rinse. It was the only thing that worked after swimming in chlorinated public pools back then. My mom used to practically bathe us in it! Thinking back, nothing made my hair shine more! Use 1/2 tablespoon of ACV in one cup of water for beautiful locks.

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4. Skin

Create a toner using 1 part ACV and 2 parts water. Rub over clean skin morning and night. If your skin is too sensitive, then dilute it. Don’t spray on; it will cause eye irritation.

ACV is a great treatment for people with oily skin, acne, scars, dark spots, and milia. I started applying this directly to some dark spots on my face with a cotton swab morning and night. I’m seeing the results rather quickly!

5. Wart remover

Soak a small cotton ball in ACV, then fasten it to the wart overnight with a band-aid or porous skin tape. After a couple of treatments, the skin may swell; the wart will turn black, and eventually fall off. Continue this until the skin is completely clear and the wart virus is dead.

While there is little scientific evidence of apple cider vinegar as a wart treatment, it has long been used for this type of treatment, as the vinegar has an ability to burn the infected skin (similar to salicylic acid3). And the anecdotal evidence is well understood: My dear friend is currently doing this exact trick, and we are both amazed at how quickly his wart has fallen off!

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6. Foot soak

Use the same 1:2 ration solution as the toner for an effective treatment for athlete's foot and foot odor resistant. This will sting on any open sores or wounds, so beware. After soaking your feet, soak those socks in the solution over night to kill any fungus.

7. Deodorant

Keep smelling fresh and clean by using a 1:2 part solution as an effective daily deodorant.

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8. Jelly fish/sea lice sting relief.

If you've ever been stung by a jelly fish, you probably don't want to bother with diluting the ACV (or white vinegar)! Feel free to use full strength on the affected area. It can calm the sting and inhibit further venom from being released.

Home

9. Cleaning agent.

A mix of 1 part ACV and 9 parts water will clean just about any surface. You can use this in a spray bottle. This is an excellent option if you are sensitive to chemicals. You can also pour full strength ACV into the toilet, bath, babies tub, etc. and leave overnight.

10. Rodent repellent.

Plagued by rabbits devouring your garden, or a cat that makes a litter box out of your sandbox or flower beds? Keep rabbits away by soaking cotton balls in vinegar and sprinkling them around flower beds. For cats, spray undiluted vinegar along the perimeter of flower beds or sandboxes to keep them out.

11. Weed killer.

You can also spray undiluted ACV (or white vinegar) on dandelions to kill them without adding unhealthy pesticides to your lawn.

Tina Discepola, M.D.
Tina Discepola, M.D.

Tina Discepola, M.D., dedicates her practice to the art of creating health and longevity through Functional Medicine. She is also a certified acupuncturist and practices in New York City, Westchester County, New York, and Boca Raton, Florida. Tina is a Diplomate of the American Board of Integrative Holistic Medicine (ABHIM), and a Diplomate of the American Board of Anti-Aging Medicine (A4M). She is an active member of The American College for the Advancement of Medicine (ACAM), and The Institute of Functional Medicine (IFM). Tina now fully dedicates her practice to the art of creating health and longevity with Diet, Nutritionals, Acupuncture, Bodywork, and Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement.