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When caring for a new baby, you want to know exactly what ingredients are in your personal care and household cleaners. The more natural, the better. Apple cider vinegar is a one-ingredient wonder that can help you replace many of the items in your home that is also safe and non-toxic. If you haven’t picked up a bottle of this amazing vinegar yet, we have plenty of reasons you should.

First of all, what makes apple cider vinegar unique? This vinegar is made by pressing apples to remove the liquid. Yeast is then added to help the liquid ferment. The best apple cider vinegar to keep on hand is one that’s organic, unfiltered, unpasteurized and as minimally processed as possible. How can you tell? Beyond checking the label, the vinegar should have a cloudy amber color with some solids that will settle at the bottom of the bottle, known as the “mother.”

Apple cider vinegar is known to have anti-inflammatory properties. Inflammation is a natural response by the body to an injury or illness — redness, swelling and pain are all symptoms of inflammation. Using apple cider vinegar topically can help reduce the discomfort of bug bites and stings and reduce the swelling of acne blemishes. Mixed with some tea and lemon, apple cider vinegar can soothe a sore throat as a natural cold and flu remedy.

Another benefit of apple cider vinegar is that it’s antibacterial and that means you can use it for both personal care and cleaning around your home. As previously mentioned, apple cider vinegar can reduce the size and discomfort of acne blemishes by combating inflammation but also by killing the bacteria that causes blemishes. Try dabbing some apple cider vinegar on your skin with a cotton ball. You can also dilute it with water and add it to a spray bottle for a face mist. Apple cider vinegar also makes a wonderful dandruff remedy, since dandruff is caused by the presence of certain bacteria on the scalp. Just dampen the scalp with it, allow to sit for a few minutes then wash out.

To put these antibacterial benefits to use around your home, dilute apple cider vinegar with water and add some essential oils, like lemon, to make an all-purpose cleaner that’s non toxic while still being effective.

Lastly, apple cider vinegar tastes great! Use this vinegar to add flavor to foods without adding sodium or fat. Apple cider vinegar works well in marinades, dressings and sauces and can even be added to cold drinks for a healthy tang.

Convinced now? Pick up a bottle of apple cider vinegar the next time you go shopping and see which products you can throw out!

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