Can Apple Cider Vinegar Reduce Swelling?

Apple cider vinegar
Apple cider vinegar can reduce swelling. (Image: Heike Rau/iStock/Getty Images)

Apple cider vinegar is a household staple used for cooking and even as a substitute, low-calorie salad dressing. What some people may not know is that apple cider vinegar can reduce swelling, according to Earl Mindell, M.D., and author of "Dr. Earl Mindell's Amazing Apple Cider Vinegar." If you have severe swelling that inhibits proper joint movement, however, see a doctor right away to determine the cause and undergo the appropriate treatment.

Apple Cider Vinegar Cures

Apple cider vinegar is a part of a long-standing tradition of home remedies dating back to Babylonia. It's even said that Hippocrates used vinegar to attend to wounds, according to Medscape General Medicine. Apple cider vinegar has been used to treat acne, heartburn, sunburn, diarrhea and infection. Even though little medical evidence exists to substantiate these claims, vinegar is still thought of as a cure-all because of the tradition of its home remedy status. Some research evidence does show apple cider vinegar to have an effect on blood sugar regulation, heart disease and infection, reports Medscape.

For Sunburn

If your skin is swollen due to a sunburn, apple cider vinegar may be able to help. According to "Back to Eden" by Jethro Kloss, applying diluted apple cider vinegar mixed with water to a sunburn can reduce inflammation and swelling -- and even relieve pain. Kloss notes you can repeat this treatment as often as needed.

For Ankles

Leg and ankle swelling can be simultaneously inconvenient and painful. However, you may be able to cut down the swelling by using vinegar wraps. Simply soak a towel in a mixture made of half parts warm water and half parts vinegar, then wrap the affected ankle for several minutes. Repeat this process using cold water to relieve the swelling.

For Hemorrhoids

Swelling due to hemorrhoids can be extremely uncomfortable and itchy. According to Dr. Mindell, you may be able to reduce swelling, itching and inflammation caused by hemorrhoids by applying vinegar directly to them. Soak a cotton ball in vinegar and apply it to the hemorrhoid. If this causes too much discomfort, dilute the vinegar with water. Repeat several times a day as needed.

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