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Generic Name: Apple Cider Vinegar

Alternate Title

ACV, Malus sylvestris, Cider vinegar


Herbs & Supplements


Acetic acid, ACV, apple cider vinegar plus honey cocktail, apple cider vinegar tablets, cider vinegar, Malus sylvestris, Mother Nature's perfect food.


Apple cider vinegar (ACV) is prepared by pulverizing apples into a slurry of juice and pulp and then adding yeast and sugars.

Reports of the healing properties of apple cider vinegar date to 3300 BC. In 400 BC, Hippocrates supposedly used apple cider vinegar as a healing elixir, an antibiotic, and for general health. Samurai warriors purportedly used a vinegar tonic for strength and power. U.S. Civil War soldiers used a vinegar solution to prevent gastric upset and as a treatment for pneumonia and scurvy.

Apple cider vinegar has been used alone and in combination with other agents for many health conditions. Anecdotally, ancient Egyptians used apple cider vinegar for weight loss. During the diet "craze" of the 1970s, proponents suggested that a combination of apple cider, kelp, vitamin B6, and lecithin could "trick" the body's metabolism into burning fat faster. Claims of preventing viral and bacterial infections, as well as allergic reactions to pollen, dander, and dust, stem from the proposed ability of apple cider vinegar to prevent alkalinization of the body. However, there is not enough scientific evidence to form a clear conclusion about the efficacy or safety of apple cider vinegar for any health condition.

There may be long-term risks associated with the acidity of apple cider vinegar, including low blood potassium levels (hypokalemia) or diminished bone mineral density.


DISCLAIMER: These uses have been tested in humans or animals. Safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious, and should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider.


WARNING: DISCLAIMER: The below uses are based on tradition, scientific theories, or limited research. They often have not been thoroughly tested in humans, and safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious, and should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider. There may be other proposed uses that are not listed below.
Acne (topical), amino acid source, anti-aging (alone or with honey), antiseptic (for gastrointestinal tract), appetite suppression, arthritis, asthma, bladder cleanser, bowel stone prevention in horses, circulation improvement, colitis, dandruff prevention (topical), decongestant, dental conditions, detoxification, diarrhea, digestion aid, dizziness, ear discharge, eczema, fatigue, flavoring agent, food poisoning, hair loss (topical), hair rinse, hay fever, headache, hearing impairment, heartburn, hemorrhage, hiccoughs, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, household sanitizer, immune enhancement, infections, insect bites (topical), insomnia, itchy scalp (topical), kidney cleanser, leg cramps, menstruation regulation, mental alertness, mineral source, nail problems, nervousness, nose bleeds, obesity, osteoporosis, queasy stomach, scurvy prevention, shingles (topical), sinus congestion, skin toner (topical), sore eyes, sore throat, strength enhancement, stuffy nose, sunburn (topical), tired eyes, vaginitis (added to baths), varicose veins, viral hepatitis, vitamin source, weight loss.


Adults (over 18 years old)

No specific doses are supported by well-designed clinical trials. In general, 2 teaspoons of cider vinegar have been taken in 1 cup water three times daily. Also, 285-milligram tablets have been taken with meals. Topical and rectal preparations have also been used but safety is unclear.

Children (under 18 years old)

Not enough available evidence.

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All visitors to AARP.org should seek expert medical care and consult their own physicians for any specific health issues. Read this disclaimer in its entirety.
Note: This information is not intended to cover all possible uses, precautions, interactions, or adverse effects for this drug. If you have question about the drug(s) you are taking, check with your health care professional.
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