Apple cider vinegar (ACV) is a popular health tonic known for its potential benefits, including aiding digestion, supporting weight loss, and even improving skin health. However, to truly reap these benefits, it’s important to use it correctly. Avoid these five common mistakes to ensure you’re getting the most out of your apple cider vinegar.

1. Drinking It Straight

One of the biggest mistakes people make with ACV is consuming it undiluted. Apple cider vinegar is highly acidic, which means drinking it straight can harm your tooth enamel and irritate your throat. Solution: Always dilute ACV with water before drinking. A good ratio to start with is one to two tablespoons of ACV in at least 8 ounces of water.

2. Using Too Much

While it’s tempting to think that more is better, too much ACV can lead to potential side effects like indigestion or lowering potassium levels. Solution: Stick to the recommended amount of one to two tablespoons per day, and consider starting with even less to see how your body reacts.

3. Taking It at the Wrong Time

Timing can influence the effectiveness of apple cider vinegar. Drinking it right before bed, for example, can increase the risk of acid reflux. Solution: The best time to take ACV is in the morning or before meals, which can help in managing blood sugar and digestion.

4. Ignoring the Type of ACV

Not all apple cider vinegars are created equal. Many of the ACV benefits are attributed to the raw, unfiltered versions containing the “mother,” which is a cluster of proteins, enzymes, and beneficial bacteria. Solution: Opt for organic, unfiltered apple cider vinegar with the “mother” to ensure you’re getting the most nutrients.

5. Neglecting to Rinse Your Mouth

Because of its acidity, ACV can contribute to enamel erosion if your teeth are exposed to it frequently without protection. Solution: After drinking your diluted ACV, rinse your mouth with water to remove any residual acid. Avoid brushing your teeth immediately after drinking ACV to prevent further enamel wear.


Apple cider vinegar can be a beneficial addition to your health regimen when used correctly. By avoiding these common mistakes, you can enjoy the positives of ACV without the downsides. Remember, as with any supplement, it’s a good idea to consult with a healthcare provider before starting any new treatment, especially if you have underlying health issues or are taking medications.