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13 Highly Effective Folk Medicine Remedies From Around the World

bowl of vinegar with basil.

Vinegar Fights Infection (France)

French folklore has it that during the 17th-century plague, a gang of four thieves would rob corpses, yet never catch the plague themselves. Supposedly, anointing their bodies with a concoction of vinegar and herbs protected them. The so-called vinaigre des quatre voleurs (four thieves vinegar) is used today in the belief it fights infection.Many of the ingredients steeped in itgarlic, rosemary, sage, lavender, thyme, juniper berry, black pepper and moreare proven to have antibacterial properties. I know people who consume this regularly as an antibacterial, says Stphane Calmeyn, Paris-based editor of Reader’s Digest. He adds that a friend of his with Type 2 diabetes credits it with helping regulate his blood sugar. Though more research is needed, there is evidence that vinegar, particularly apple cider vinegar, can affect blood sugar levels: it delays the rate at which the stomach empties and starch is digested, which reduces the blood-sugar spike after a meal. But check with your doctor before adding it to your diet, particularly if you are taking blood-sugar-lowering medications.Apple cider vinegar may also prevent overeating. A small Swedish study found that those who consumed vinegar with a meal reported feeling more satiated than those who didnt consume vinegar. That could prevent unhealthy snacking later in the evening. Its best not to drink vinegar undiluted, as its acidity could damage tooth enamel. Instead, add one or two teaspoons to water or tea.(Related: 11 Things That Can Happen When You Drink Apple Cider Vinegar Every Day)

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