Does apple cider vinegar for yeast infection work?
You are going to discover the answer to this question and much more about ACV in this article.
People have been trying various natural remedies to get rid of yeast infections.
ACV is one of the most debated and discussed home remedies for fungal skin infections which are caused by yeasts.
Common fungal infections on the skin are Candida (Malassezia furfur or dermatophytes), Epidermophyton, Microsporum, and Trichophyton (1).
New medical research and news reports also suggest that regularly ingesting apple cider vinegar can help acid reflux, lower blood pressure, improve diabetes, support weight loss, and fight infections (2).
The health and medicinal benefits of ACV spring from its potent healing compounds which include enzymes, probiotics, potassium, and magnesium.
Various acids contained in ACV such as acetic, lactic, malic, and citric acid are also beneficial for fighting microbial infections.
About Yeast Infection
Yeast infections are caused by the fungus Candida Albicans (3).
Overgrowth of yeast due to various reasons can cause an imbalance in the natural microbial ecosystem of the body.
A yeast infection happens when our immune system and friendly bacteria fail to suppress the overgrowth of the fungus (4).
Yeasts growing in excess disturb the healthy equilibrium of microorganisms in the body.
Destruction of healthy bacteria or weak immune system is responsible for the overgrowth of yeasts.
Yeast infection commonly occurs in the vagina (Monilial vaginitis). Other areas of the body susceptible to a yeast infection are esophagus, mouth, feet, skin folds, under the breasts, butt, and penis.
Common symptoms of thrush or Candida infections are redness, soreness, rashes, itching, swelling, and white discharge (5).
Related Article: Essential Oils For Yeast Infection
Does Apple Cider Vinegar For Yeast Infection Work?
Apple cider vinegar is greatly beneficial for health because of the potent healing compounds such as magnesium, potassium, enzymes, probiotics, and acetic acid present in it.
The acetic acid in ACV is a probiotics substance that helps the growth of friendly gut bacteria and enhances the immune system of your body.
Yeast infection can easily occur in diabetes patients as high blood sugar provides a nourishing environment to the overgrowth of yeast.
A study published by the American Diabetes Association has revealed the way vinegar helped people with diabetes control their glucose and insulin responses.
The malic acid contained in ACV is a natural antibiotic that has antibacterial and antifungal properties.
The Best Type of ACV for Curing Yeast Infection
The best quality ACV is made by fermenting the pressed apple juice till the sugar in it turns into vinegar.
For maximum health benefits always choose the organic ACV that is unprocessed, unpasteurized, and unfiltered.
Homemade ACV is the best one you can use.
It is better to avoid the refined ACV that you find in most of the stores.
A good quality ACV usually has something known as “mother of vinegar,” a cloudy substance which either floats or sinks to the bottom of the ACV bottle.
This floating substance in the ACV contains enzymes, probiotics, and trace minerals that are beneficial for health and getting rid of yeast infection.
Before you pour out the required amount of ACV, it is good to shake the bottle well to distribute evenly the floating or sedimented substances in it.
How To Use Apple Cider Vinegar For Fungal Infections?
Apple cider vinegar for yeast infection treatment can be used orally or topically.
Methods of using ACV vary according to the infected area of the body and type of infection.
Yeast infection in the vagina (Vaginal Candidiasis) is the most common form of vaginitis.
It is characterized by severe itching, redness in the exterior region of the vagina, burning sensation, white cottage cheese-like discharge, and irritation in the pelvic region (8).
Douching (washing or soaking) is the best way to use apple cider vinegar for Vaginal Candidiasis.
Use ACV diluted in freshwater to douche the infected area; repeat the procedure minimum of twice a day.
Another method is to apply the ACV with a cotton ball directly to the infected area of the vagina for relieving itching and inflammation.
You can also use ACV-soaked Tampon to treat the infection; let the tampon stay in the vagina for at least 20 minutes for allowing ACV to spread over to the infected area.
Intestinal Yeast Infection
Overgrowth of yeast in the intestinal tract causes infection and toxic effects.
Intestinal yeast infection is triggered by unhealthy diets, excessive stress, or prolonged use of antibiotics.
Some of the prominent symptoms of intestinal yeast infection are muscle pain, headaches, joint pain, insomnia, belching, heartburn, skin rashes, anxiety, oral thrush, bloating, and diarrhea.
Apple cider vinegar can help in managing yeast infection in the intestinal tract by re-balancing the friendly gut bacteria and eliminate the toxic yeast.
For treating yeast infection in the esophagus, drink 1 tablespoon of diluted ACV in one cup of water. Repeat the treatment three times a day.
Oral thrush is a yeast infection that occurs in the mouth.
It produces white or creamy-looking sores in the mouth and tongue. It can severely affect the areas around the tongue and inner cheeks.
If no timely treatment is administered, it may even further spread to the throat, gums, and roof of the mouth.
Apple cider vinegar may be a good home remedy to manage oral thrush.
Dilute two teaspoons of ACV in 1 cup of water and swish it in the mouth and drink it. Repeat the ACV treatment thrice a day till the oral thrush is completely healed.
Skin/Cutaneous Candidiasis and Athlete’s Foot
Yeast infection can occur in different areas of the skin.
Areas under the breast, under the skin folds, groin area, between the fingers, under the nail beds, and between the toes are highly susceptible to yeast infection.
Yeast infection on the skin (Cutaneous Candidiasis) or under the feet and between the toes (Athlete’s Foot) appear as reddish rashes, a patch of blisters that ooze fluid, itchy bumps, or cracked sores.
Applying diluted apple cider vinegar on the infected area helps to reduce pain and itching.
For treating a yeast infection on the skin, you can use apple cider vinegar bath, compress, or soaking body in the bathtub with ACV diluted in the water.
Let the affected area get soaked in ACV water for 20 minutes daily till the yeast infection totally dries up and disappears.
Different Methods Of ACV Treatment For Fungal Infections
We have just discussed some of the ways to use apple cider vinegar for yeast infections affecting the vagina, mouth, skin, and esophagus.
There are a few more easy methods to use ACV for getting rid of fungal infections.
You can try out any of the methods according to the area of infection.
1. Ingesting Apple Cider Vinegar
Drinking up to 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar daily may help the growth of friendly bacteria in the gut.
It is also a good remedy for getting rid of yeast infection in the intestinal tract and mouth.
For ingesting, add 1 tablespoon of ACV to a cup of water and drink it. You can have the ACV drink twice or thrice a day.
Strictly abstain from adding honey or sugar to ACV water as this will promote the growth of Candida Albicans that cause a yeast infection.
2. Soaking In ACV Water
Soaking the fungus-infected area with ACV may help in eliminating the fungus causing the infection.
Use a cotton ball or cotton cloth dipped in ACV for soaking the infected area.
Reduce the acidic content in ACV by diluting it with water to avoid irritation and burning sensation; ideally, the acidic content should be less than 5%.
You can rinse off the applied ACV from the infected area after an hour of applying.
3. Douching With ACV
You can use ACV to douche the infected area.
This method works well for healing yeast infections in the vagina.
ACV helps to balance the pH levels in the vagina and eliminates the fungus that causes infection.
Add 3 tablespoons of ACV to a cup of distilled water and use this ACV water for douching the vagina.
For best results, repeat the treatment twice or thrice a day until the infection is totally gone.
4. Apple Cider Vinegar Bath
For Vaginal Candidiasis having an apple cider vinegar bath is a powerful treatment.
You can also use this method for treating yeast infection on skin, between the toes and finger, and under the toenails and feet.
Add 1-2 cups of apple cider vinegar to warm water in the bathtub or a sufficiently large container.
Soak the infected area of the body or the entire body in the ACV treated water for 10 minutes.
Alternatively, you can also add 2 cups of ACV to a bucket of warm water and use this water for bathing and soak the fungus-infected area of the body.
5. Use ACV as Part of Your Diet
If you find it difficult to consume raw ACV, it is a great option to use it in cooking, juices, smoothies, pickles, or salads.
Regularly consuming up to 2 tablespoons of ACV help reduce the chances of getting a yeast infection.
It also helps to maintain a healthy pH balance in the body besides providing several other health benefits.
6. Use ACV Supplement
ACV is now available in supplement forms such as pills, tonics, and capsules.
ACV supplements contain all the important ingredients naturally found in the organic ACV.
Regularly using ACV supplements may help in improving your immune system, balancing pH factors, and preventing microbial infections.
ACV supplements may also help in weight loss, diabetes, and reducing blood pressure.
7. Using ACV along With Other Natural Remedies
For getting rid of yeast infection mix into your bath water 2-3 cups of ACV and 10 drops of tea tree oil.
In addition, you can also add a few drops of oregano oil to your ACV bath.
Tea tree oil contains highly potent antifungal properties which may eliminate Candida Albicans.
8. Apple Cider Vinegar Tampon
Tampon soaked with apple cider vinegar is a fantastic option for treating Vaginal Candidiasis.
Dip a tampon in one cup of apple cider vinegar and use it as an ACV applicator inside the vagina.
The tampon gradually oozes out the vinegar evenly to every part of the vaginal wall to reduce pain and irritation.
ACV inside the vagina also helps to eliminate the fungus growing on the wall of the vagina.
Warnings And Tips On Using ACV
Apple cider vinegar is an age-old traditional home remedy for managing microbial infections like yeast infections.
There are no scientific evidence or verified studies that support the guaranteed effectiveness of ACV in getting rid of fungal infections.
All severe incidences of yeast infection should be treated by a doctor.
After using ACV for Candida infection, if you do not find any improvement after two days, you should consult your doctor for further treatment of the infection.
Always use only the best quality ACV which is organic, raw, unfiltered, and unpasteurized.
To avoid irritation and allergic reactions, always dilute the ACV in distilled water before applying it directly to the infected area.
Do not add honey, or sugar to apple cider vinegar as this might increase the growth of Candida fungus.
Do not bleach or wash the infected area with baking soda as this will aggravate the infection by upsetting the pH level of the body.
Do not wear tight-fitting clothes and undergarments that allow the moisture to gather in the affected area and prevents air passage to the body.
Include in your diet probiotic foods like yogurt, kefir, tempeh, kimchi, kombucha, buttermilk, and pickles that nourish the good bacteria in the gut.
Apple cider vinegar for yeast infection may work effectively when you combine it with antifungal diets and personal hygiene.
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