Apple cider vinegar has become quite the trend in recent years. Influencers are touting it as a cure-all as well as a disinfectant, natural preservative, and even hair conditioner. But the hype isn’t anything new; vinegar has been used as a natural remedy for millennia, and many of its health claims have recently been backed by scientific research [source].
But what about using apple cider vinegar for hot flashes?
There certainly are plenty of reports from women going through perimenopause claiming apple cider vinegar has worked wonders for them. More specifically, it has reduced the severity or frequency of their hot flashes. But there’s not enough research yet to help back these claims.
Does that mean it doesn’t work, and women are just imaging the relief they’re getting from it? Of course not! Here’s more on the benefits of apple cider vinegar for hot flashes.
What Is Apple Cider Vinegar?
Apple cider vinegar is vinegar made by fermenting apple juice. To make apple cider vinegar, producers first crush the apples then squeeze out the juice. Usually, bacteria and yeast are added to this juice to start the alcoholic fermentation, although this isn’t always necessary. The end product is a diluted solution of 5-6% acetic acid, vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals.
Acetic acid gives apple cider vinegar its pungent smell and sour taste. It’s also the main reason for its health benefits [source]. Research into its medicinal properties found it helps prevent foodborne illness, lower blood pressure, fight tumors, and improve glycemic control in diabetes patients. However, some of these benefits also come from other compounds in apple cider vinegar, notably polyphenols and other antioxidants.
Does Apple Cider Vinegar Reduce Hot Flashes?
You’ve probably heard women swear apple cider vinegar has practically been a life changer for them, significantly reducing their hot flashes and night sweats. And according to a survey on Earth Clinic, a top alternative health site, apple cider vinegar is the most popular/effective natural remedy for this common female ailment [source].
However, if you try to dig in deeper to find arguments for why it may help with hot flashes and if it actually does, there’s not much substantial evidence.
One study on alternative medicine in the treatment of menopausal symptoms found that many women reported using apple cider vinegar [source]. But no explanation as to the reasoning for this was provided.
Recommending apple cider vinegar as a hot flash and night sweats remedy was likely started by Cynthia Holzapfel in her book Apple Cider Vinegar: For Weight Loss and Good Health, published in 2002. In one of the book’s chapters, she recommends drinking an apple cider vinegar tonic in the morning as a way to “help regulate toxins that the body is trying to eliminate through perspiration.”
But hot flashes in perimenopause don’t happen because of toxins. They’re more likely due to the body’s thermoregulatory system going out of whack due to hormonal shifts.
Nonetheless, you can try this remedy and see for yourself while we wait for more research to provide better explanations.
How to Take Apple Cider Vinegar for Hot Flashes?
You’re probably now wondering how to drink apple cider vinegar for hot flashes. Women will usually make an apple cider vinegar tonic and drink it in the morning (or throughout the day). Herbal tonics have a long history in alternative medicine, and that’s also true for apple cider vinegar tonic.
The original apple cider vinegar tonic recipe, as recommended by Cynthia Holzapfel, is a simple solution of water and apple cider vinegar, specifically:
1-2 tsp apple cider vinegar + 1 glass of water
Drink this before or during meals about three times a day until your symptoms subside or longer if you wish.
However, some may find this drink unappetizing, if not impossible, to stomach. If you find that you can agree with this sentiment, then you may want to try an apple cider vinegar tonic with tasty ingredients, like tea, maple syrup, ginger, lemon, and cinnamon, for example.
Whichever tonic you choose, the daily dosage for apple cider vinegar is around 30 ml or 1-2 tablespoons. Consuming more than this will not result in greater health benefits. Rather, it could put you at risk of uncomfortable side effects like tooth enamel erosion, osteoporosis, and dangerously low potassium levels [source 1, source 2].
Apple cider vinegar is touted as a remedy for nearly everything, from high blood pressure and sugar levels to fungal infections and even warts. Another purported health benefit of this seeming health elixir is menopausal hot flashes relief.
And while there’s no scientific evidence yet linking apple cider vinegar and hot flashes, plenty of reports and advice from alternative circles claim it works.
Most believing in this benefit make vinegar tonic, while some go the simpler route by taking apple cider vinegar tablets for hot flashes and even gummy bears. Whichever route you choose, keep your intake within reasonable daily limits and see if this natural remedy can work for you.
Apple Cider Vinegar Drink for Hot Flashes
- 2 tsp chamomile flowers dried
- 1 tsp lemon juice freshly squeezed
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp raw honey or maple syrup for a vegan alternative
- 1 cup water hot boiling
- Add the chamomile flowers to a kettle, then pour the hot boiling water to infuse. Lid or cover the kettle and let infuse for 10 minutes.
- Strain the brewed chamomile tea and let cool until comfortable to drink.
- Add the apple cider vinegar, lemon juice and honey (or maple syrup), mix to combine and drink straight away.