Apple Cider Vinegar Side Effects on Hair, Skin and more

drinking apple cider vinegar side effects

Apple Cider Vinegar Side Effects on Hair, Skin and more

Apple cider vinegar is like the poster child for homemade remedies. For centuries, it has been used to treat a whole range of issues like dandruff, weight loss, and even to significantly lower blood sugar levels in the body. But before you start using it here some of Apple Cider Vinegar Side Effects?

One of the earliest uses of apple cider vinegar has been recorded to go back to Hippocrates, where he used it as a health tonic.

While there is no denying that the health benefits of apple cider vinegar are numerous, having too much of it or taking it the wrong way can cause side effects.

When you’re aware of the side effects of apple cider vinegar, and the right ways to consume it, you can avoid a whole lot of complications, and enjoy its benefits instead.

What Is Apple Cider Vinegar?

Apple cider vinegar is a type of vinegar that is made by fermenting cider apples. Two fermentation processes are involved.

In the first, cider apples are crushed and the juice is extracted, after which certain type of bacteria is added. This turns the apple juice to alcohol.

In the second process, it is fermented once again, to turn the alcohol into vinegar. For this, bacteria that can turn the alcohol into acetic-acid is added.

There are two types of apple cider vinegar that is commonly used. The first is a raw, unfiltered version. This contains something known as the ‘mother’ of vinegar. It is perhaps the most beneficial part of the vinegar, as it contains certain vitamins, minerals, and nutrients. The presence of the mother of vinegar is apple cider vinegar gives it a certain cloudy, web-like appearance.

The second type of apple cider vinegar is the filtered version. This does not contain the mother of vinegar. It instead, has a clear appearance.

Uses Of Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is a common household product that serves its purpose for various uses. A few are as follows –

  1. It is used for salad dressings and in a few dishes because of its sour flavour. It gets this sourness from the combination of acetic acid and malic acid.
  2. Apple cider vinegar is used in healthcare for weight reduction, to treat diabetes, cardiovascular disorders, and to detoxify the body.
  3. It is also used as a cosmetic product as it can benefit the skin. It has superior anti-fungal, anti-microbial, and properties, and it can help keep infections at bay.
  4. Apple cider vinegar is used for hair as well. It can manage the pH levels of the hair, thereby treating dullness. Many women make it a part of their hair care routine.
  5. Apple cider vinegar can be used as a disinfectant for cleaning floors as well.
  6. To remove warts. (1)

Is there any side effects of apple cider vinegar

A lot has been said about the benefits of apple cider vinegar, but it is imperative that you are aware of the side effects that come along with the consumption or application of apple cider vinegar as well. Not knowing the side effects can cause harm to your body, and in some cases, prove to be dangerous.

This is especially true for people suffering from gastroparesis or hypokalemia.

Apple cider vinegar, especially if not diluted in water, can cause internal and external skin burns, interfere with your blood sugar levels, and destroy your tooth enamel. To be on the safer side, you may consult a nutritionist before you begin to make apple cider vinegar a regular part of your diet.

Apple Cider Vinegar Side Effects

Before you consume apple cider vinegar, you should be aware of its side effects. These are listed below.

1. May cause nausea: side effects of drinking apple cider vinegar

Some people who consumed apple cider vinegar, may complain of nausea. To treat weight loss and type 1 diabetes, apple cider vinegar is usually ingested with some water, first thing in the morning, on an empty stomach.

In some cases, apple cider vinegar can trigger nausea.

If you are one of those sensitive people, who happen to be suffering from nausea caused by apple cider vinegar, it is recommended that you avoid drinking it on an empty stomach. (9)

You may decrease the amount of ACV you are taking, consider adding 1 tsp ACV to half a glass of water in the beginning. However, if the nausea persists try taking diluted ACV after food.

2. May reduce potassium levels & increase bone loss

side effect of apple cider vinegar on body due to low potassium

Apple cider vinegar can lower the blood levels of potassium in the body. Potassium is a crucial mineral that is responsible for the functioning of muscles and nerves.

Consuming large amounts of ACV over extended period of time (couple of years) may cause low levels of potassium that can lead to bone loss and osteoporosis.

Hypokalemia is a condition in which people have extremely low levels of potassium in their body. A moderate case of hypokalemia might cause muscle aches and pain, while a severe case of hypokalemia may even cause paralysis.

For people who are already suffering from hypokalemia, apple cider vinegar can make this condition worse. (3)

3. May cause headaches

In many instances, people who consume apple cider vinegar on a daily basis might experience some headaches.

This is more common for those who consume apple cider vinegar in the mornings, on an empty stomach. However, this is just a sign that the body is undergoing a detoxification process.

A headache caused by apple cider vinegar under such circumstances, usually only lasts for around 2 to 3 weeks.

You can avoid this by further diluting your ACV drink with water & taking it after meals. Should the headache persist after this, consult your doctor.

4. Can cause corrosion of tooth enamel

apple cider vinegar benefits and side effects on Tooth

Can cause corrosion of tooth enamel

Acidic substances can cause the tooth enamel to corrode.

Apple cider vinegar is acidic in nature, due to which, prolonged exposure can destroy and weaken the surface of your teeth.  Specially if the ACV drink is strong and not diluted enough.

Once the tooth enamel is destroyed, it can further cause tooth decay and even cavities. The acetic acid in apple cider vinegar can also cause teeth to lose its whiteness, adding a yellowish tinge to it.

In order to protect your teeth while consuming apple cider vinegar, use a straw. (2)

5. May cause gastrointestinal issues

The acidic nature of apple cider vinegar can have a negative effect on the gastrointestinal system. For one, it slows down the process of digestion, or the time taken for the food to leave the stomach. This condition is called gastroparesis and apple cider vinegar may trigger it. (5)

Apple cider vinegar can also interfere with the blood sugar levels in the body. One of the ways that apple cider vinegar promotes weight loss is by causing a loss of appetite. This, in‌ ‌turn, can reduce the necessary calorie intake. (4)

6. May cause internal & external burns

Apple cider vinegar, being acidic in nature, can actually cause both internal and external burns in your body. This particularly happens due to prolonged consumption and exposure, as well as when apple cider vinegar is undiluted.

Most kinds of vinegar, including apple cider vinegar, is caustic in nature, which means it is capable of burning or corroding organic tissue like skin.

So, drinking undiluted apple cider vinegar can burn your mouth and throat. It is recommended to dilute ACV by using 1 part acv with 10 parts water, at a minimum. You may dilute it much more to avoid side effects.

The application of apple cider vinegar, in its undiluted form, over a prolonged time, can cause your skin to burn as well.

It can also worsen symptoms of sunburns and rashes. (6)

7. May cause itching

In some cases, that apple cider vinegar can cause itching as well. This can happen when you develop an allergic reaction to apple cider vinegar.

In such cases, you should stop the consumption of apple cider vinegar. However, you can try it again after a few days to see if the problem persists.

If it does, then you are probably allergic to it. Also, undiluted apple cider vinegar is too strong and acidic, so make sure it is always diluted. (7)

8. Apple Cider Vinegar side effects on hair

washing hair with apple cider vinegar side effects

Apple Cider Vinegar side effects on hair

It has numerous health benefits for your hair. It can remove dullness and frizziness of hair, and add lustre and life. Since it has anti-fungal and anti-microbial properties, it can also keep dandruff and other infections like psoriasis at bay.

However, in some cases, there are a few side effects of apple cider vinegar on hair as well. Frequent repetition can sometimes dry out your scalp. Being acidic in nature, apple cider vinegar can also make your hair brittle and weak, thereby causing damage.

Apple cider vinegar also has a strong smell that might linger after a hair wash. If you have small cuts on your scalp from a prior injury or scratch, then chances are that apple cider vinegar might burn that area.

You must always keep in mind that when using apple cider vinegar for hair, it has to be diluted in water. Never use undiluted apple cider vinegar for your hair as this is too strong, and its acidic nature might damage your hair.

9. Apple Cider Vinegar side effects on skin

side effects of using apple cider vinegar on skin

side effects of using apple cider vinegar on skin

Apple cider vinegar has high acid content and has antiseptic properties, so it comes in handy to clean external wounds & scratches. It can also help treat sunburns and work as an excellent skin toner. However, using apple cider vinegar as a treatment option is suitable only for small wounds & mild sunburn.

Applying apple cider vinegar to serious external injury or an intense case of sunburns may not help.

Using undiluted apple cider vinegar directly on the skin, over a long period of time, may burn your skin causing rashes and irritation. It must be used topically only after dilution.

Consider doing a skin patch test on your inner elbow before applying apple cider vinegar to your skin.

For serious problems it is best to consult your physician.

10. Side effects of using apple cider vinegar for weight loss

apple cider vinegar weight loss drink side effects

Apple cider vinegar delays the time taken by the food you eat, to leave the stomach- thereby aiding weight loss. This can cause an imbalance in your blood sugar levels. It can also lead to a condition known as gastroparesis.

Gastroparesis is the delay in the digestive activity.

Apple cider vinegar can also suppress your appetite. When it does this, you might end up not eating well, which in turn can result in the lack of nutrients that your body needs. It can also lower your daily necessary caloric intake.

To avoid these you can lower your dosage of ACV.

11. Apple cider vinegar diet side effects

Off late, the apple cider vinegar diet is all the rage.

It seems to be a quick fix for being overweight or obese and shedding the pounds, and people are all eager to try it out.

It often includes drinking apple cider vinegar mixed with water on an empty stomach every morning and at night before bed, and splashing a generous amount of apple cider vinegar in your food, incorporating it wherever you can.

However, this might do more harm than good.

While apple cider vinegar in moderation is great for your digestive health, it can have a lot more downsides if it is consumed in excess.

It can cause you to have a condition known as gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD. This is a digestive disorder. It can also cause an increase in acidity in your body.

12. Apple Cider Vinegar side effects on kidneys

Apple cider vinegar, being acidic in nature, has pH balancing properties.

Scientists uses the pH level as a standard  metric to determine the acidity or the alkalinity in your body. The lower end of the pH is acidic, while the higher end is alkaline.

By drinking apple cider vinegar, you can restore the natural pH levels in your body. However, this is only when you drink apple cider vinegar in moderation.

Excessive consumption of apple cider vinegar can increase the levels of acidity in your body. This, in turn, leads to a condition known as acidosis. When the body suffers from acidosis, the pH level of the blood will fall to below 7, which is an indication that there is excess acidity in the blood stream. This can largely affect the kidneys.

Over time, the kidney’s ability to excrete all the excess acids through the urine gets hindered. This, in turn, can lead to kidney stones, and in some extreme cases, renal failure.

13. Apple cider vinegar with honey side effects

In recent years, apple cider vinegar has been the go-to choice for those who want to lose weight. However, some people may add honey to apple cider vinegar to mask its sour taste.

While honey is a healthier alternative to sugar, it is calorie dense. Therefore, adding honey to the equation stumps the purpose of consuming apple cider vinegar for weight loss.

One study concluded that mixing vinegar with honey can actually impact your health negatively. In this study, scientists gave the candidates a solution of water mixed with vinegar and honey.

By the end of the study, they observed an increase in the resistance to insulin. Additionally, they observed a decrease in the levels of the good cholesterol or  HDL, which is beneficial for heart health. (10)

Drug Interactions Apple Cider Vinegar Uses and Side Effects

Apple cider vinegar can interact with other drugs and medications that you consume, resulting in reactions that could be harmful to your body. Here is a list of few such interactions of apple cider vinegar with other drugs and medications:

1. Insulin and apple cider vinegar

If you are on insulin medication, it is best to avoid the consumption of apple cider vinegar. Taking apple cider vinegar along with insulin medications can lower the blood sugar levels in your body to dangerous levels. It can also cause a dip in the blood potassium levels.

2. With diuretic drugs

Diuretics are medications that increase the amount of water and salt expelled from the body as urine. They’re often prescribed to help treat high blood pressure and other ailments.

Some diuretic medications may cause the body to lose excessive potassium with other salts. Since ACV is a natural diuretic it is recommended to NOT consume it with diuretics to prevent your potassium levels in the body from falling too much. (11)

3. With potassium lowering drugs

Since ACV is a natural diuretic, it should not be combined with other potassium lowering drugs.

ACV Dosage To Avoid Side Effects

In order to prevent the side effects of apple cider vinegar, keep the following in mind –

  1. Consume no more than 15 to 30 ml per day
  2. Make sure that you always diluted apple cider vinegar with water. Do this in the ratio of one-part apple cider vinegar to ten parts water.
  3. Leave a gap between the repeat consumption of apple cider vinegar, if you are too sensitive to it.
  4. Avoid prolonged, direct exposure of apple cider vinegar on your skin.
  5. Refrain from consuming apple cider vinegar if you are suffering from gastroparesis or hypokalemia.
  6. To prevent tooth decay and corrosion of the enamel, make sure that you use a straw while consuming apple cider vinegar drinks. (8)

The Takeaway

A lot has been said about the benefits of apple cider vinegar, but it is imperative that you are aware of the side effects that come along with the consumption or application of apple cider vinegar as well. Not knowing the side effects can cause harm to your body, and in some cases, prove to be dangerous.

This is especially true for people suffering from gastroparesis or hypokalemia.

Apple cider vinegar, especially if not diluted in water, can cause internal and external skin burns, interfere with your blood sugar levels, and destroy your tooth enamel. To be on the safer side, you may consult a nutritionist before you begin to make apple cider vinegar a regular part of your diet.

FAQ:

Q1 Is there any side effects of drinking apple cider vinegar and water?

Generally there is no side effect of  drinking apple cider vinegar and water as long as you keep the following in mind:

  1. Consume no more than 15 to 30 ml per day
  2. Make sure that you always diluted apple cider vinegar with water. Do this in the ratio of one-part apple cider vinegar to ten parts water.
  3. Leave a gap between the repeat consumption of apple cider vinegar, if you are too sensitive to it.
  4. Avoid prolonged, direct exposure of apple cider vinegar on your skin.
  5. Refrain from consuming apple cider vinegar if you are suffering from gastroparesis or hypokalemia.
  6. To prevent tooth decay and corrosion of the enamel, make sure that you use a straw while consuming apple cider vinegar drinks. (8)

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