Taking apple cider vinegar for high blood pressure may be the natural solution for managing the common health condition. High blood pressure, also known as hypertension, is where the arterial walls become distorted, and an extra burden of stress is placed on the heart. In the U.S., about one in three adults has high blood pressure, including around half of people over 65 years of age.
Interestingly, the father of modern medicine, Hippocrates, is known for giving apple cider vinegar to his patients over 2,000 years ago. Among the reported health benefits of apple cider vinegar include blood sugar reduction, decreasing cholesterol, increasing metabolism and speeding up weight loss, and treating acid reflux and supporting gut health.
However, in this article, we are set to answer the question, “Is apple cider vinegar good for high blood pressure?” In addition, we provide the best apple cider vinegar for high blood pressure dosage, apple cider vinegar recipes, and potential side effects and interactions.
Apple Cider Vinegar for High Blood Pressure
How does apple cider vinegar lower blood pressure? Apple cider vinegar is thought to treat high blood pressure through balancing the body’s pH. Breaking down phlegm deposits and fat in the body can lead to lower pressure against the arterial walls and better overall circulation.
The main component of apple cider vinegar, acetic acid, is considered most beneficial for reducing high blood pressure. One study published in Bioscience, Biotechnology, and Biochemistry in 2001 found that acetic acid would significantly reduce blood pressure and renin activity in hypertensive rats, compared to controls not given vinegar or acetic acid. Renin is an enzyme known to increase blood pressure by stretching receptors in the vascular walls.
Another study published in the British Journal of Nutrition in 2006 showed that the acetic acid in apple cider vinegar could effectively control high blood pressure by reducing cholesterol in rats. The group taking acetic acid in their diet had significantly lower triglyceride and cholesterol levels.
Having high triglycerides in the blood is linked to atherosclerosis—thickening of the artery wall due to plaque buildup. High triglycerides may also be a sign of metabolic syndrome—a combination of high triglycerides, high blood pressure, high blood sugar, low HDL (high-density lipoprotein) cholesterol, and too much fat around the waist.
It is also important to note that high cholesterol is associated with hypertension. When there is too much bad cholesterol in the blood, the arteries become narrowed and hardened with cholesterol; therefore, the heart must work extra hard to pump blood. This then causes hypertension.
A 2009 study also found that apple cider vinegar significantly reduced both triglycerides and blood pressure.
Dosage of Apple Cider Vinegar for High Blood Pressure
What is the correct apple cider vinegar for high blood pressure dosage? Although there is no specific recommendation on how to use apple cider vinegar, some people report success with as low as two teaspoons or as high as three tablespoons for reducing high blood pressure.
The key is to start off with a low dose, and gradually increase slowly. Start with one teaspoon in a glass of filtered water, one to three times daily. If you’re not seeing results, increase to two teaspoons in water twice per day. If your blood pressure is still not decreasing, increase the dosage to one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in water three times daily.
It is also important to note that not all apple cider vinegar is equal. You will want to get raw apple cider vinegar with the “mother” intact. The cloudy, brown, cobweb-like substance called “the mother” is a sign that the friendly bacteria and enzymes have not been removed. Select organic, unfiltered, and unpasteurized apple cider vinegar to treat conditions like high blood pressure.
Apple Cider Vinegar Recipes for High Blood Pressure
Do you want to know how to use apple cider vinegar to lower blood pressure? There are many ways you can utilize apple cider vinegar within your diet to lower high blood pressure. For instance, some will use apple cider vinegar to bring out the nutrients in a homemade bone broth.
It is also a good idea to start your day with a large glass of filtered water and a splash of apple cider vinegar and a squeeze of lemon. The lemon and apple cider vinegar may not only strengthen your digestion, but it may also have your blood pressure on track to start your day.
The following are three quick and easy apple cider vinegar recipes for high blood pressure:
1. Apple Cider Vinegar Honey Drink
- 1 tbsp raw apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp raw liquid honey or 3 to 5 drops liquid stevia
- 1 to 1 1/2 cups warm filtered water
- Optional: 1/2 tsp activated charcoal
- In a serving glass, combine apple cider vinegar, honey or stevia, and activated charcoal if using.
- Pour in warm water and stir well. One cup of water will make a strong tonic, whereas one and a half cups will make a warm lemonade alternative.
- Drink this ACV honey drink before meals to support both digestion and blood pressure regulation.
2. Apple Cider Vinegar Cayenne Pepper Tonic
- 1 glass warm or hot water (12 to 16 oz.)
- 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- ½ to 1 tsp ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
- 1 dash cayenne pepper
- Warm the water, and mix all the ingredients together. Serve the tonic water at desired temperature. You can increase the cayenne slightly, but don’t go over a quarter teaspoon.
- Use this tonic twice daily for best results with high blood pressure.
3. Apple Cider Vinegar Salad Dressing
- 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 2 tbsp plus 1 tsp tamari coconut aminos
- 1 clove garlic
- 1/4 cup filtered water
- 1/4 cup roasted almond butter
- 2 tbsp coconut sugar
- 1 tbsp fresh lime juice
- Optional: 1 small chili pepper if you want it spicy
Combine all ingredients in a blender, and blend until smooth. The dressing can be used over any type of salad.
Potential Risks of Taking Apple Cider Vinegar
While apple cider vinegar is very beneficial and often safe in food amounts, there are some noteworthy side effects and interactions to consider. For example, consumption of eight ounces of apple cider vinegar daily on a regular basis may lead to problems like low potassium.
Since apple cider vinegar may reduce blood sugar levels, those with diabetes should monitor blood sugar levels closely. Taking apple cider vinegar at full strength may also burn the throat and mouth and erode the teeth enamel. It’s important to dilute the solution with water before swallowing.
Furthermore, regular use of apple cider vinegar may decrease bone density, which may be a problem for osteoporosis patients. Apple cider vinegar is also not recommended for breastfeeding or pregnant women.
What about apple cider vinegar and high blood pressure medication? Apple cider vinegar is thought to interact with antihypertensive drugs such as digoxin (“Lanoxin”). Low potassium can also increase digoxin side effects.
People also taking laxatives, medication for heart disease and diabetes, and diuretics should not take apple cider vinegar before consulting their doctor. This is because large amounts of apple cider vinegar can reduce potassium levels in the body, and taking diuretics or insulin with apple cider vinegar can also decrease the potassium in the body.
Apple Cider Vinegar for Blood Pressure
Does apple cider vinegar lower blood pressure? The key takeaway from this article is that apple cider vinegar shows great potential for treating high blood pressure. Additionally, it is extremely alkalinizing, which means it can balance low pH levels and is beneficial for digestion, strengthening your entire immune system, and improving your overall quality of life.
Scientific research reveals that apple cider vinegar is great for high blood pressure. However, most studies have been limited to mice and rats. Further research is necessary to confirm its benefits in humans. That said, it is also a very versatile “superfood,” and can be used for bone broths, lemon drinks, honey drinks, cayenne tonics, and salad dressings. Overall, apple cider vinegar is a worthwhile addition to a healthy diet.
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