Apple cider vinegar is said to have many health benefits, but have you ever heard of taking apple cider vinegar for toenail fungus? Is it really as simple as this to get rid of that nasty fungal infection that has been plaguing your toes? Does this stuff really works and should you be using it?
Natural treatments, like that of using apple cider vinegar (ACV), are usually associated with being more healthy than synthetic chemicals that we are also afraid of. Now this isn’t necessarily true all of the time, but a lot of the times it is true.
ACV is well known to be safe for use. You don’t have to worry about any crazy side effects, such as those that come from taking certain prescription drugs. For example there are the two popular antifungal drugs, Lamisil and Sporanox, that people have died while taking and because of this there has been a big scare where many people refuse to take such drugs.
Another reason why ACV is becoming so darn popular is because it is inexpensive and you can find it at any grocery store. It is one that?
But there is no point in trying it if it doesn’t work. So does this stuff really work?
ACV can work to eliminate your toenail fungus, but this is definitely not a guarantee. It is a rather mild treatment and if you have a very severe case then it very possibly might not eliminate the problem.
However, based on my research and what I have found out from other people who have used ACV to treat toenail fungus, it seems that just about everyone at least sees some benefits, such as the fungal condition appearing better and it not spreading anymore.
So if you have a mild case of fungus then this might be well worth the try and may even eliminate the problem. If you have a more serious case you are less likely to see the desired results, but hey… It is cheap and easy, so it still may be worth a try.
The reason that ACV works to eliminate fungus (sometimes) is because it creates an environment that stops fungal growth.
The pH of ACV is around 3.1 – 5.0 based on what I have found, which makes it a nice mild acidic treatment.
Fungus can’t grow in all environments. If your skin and toenail don’t have the right pH then it will not grow. Creating a more acidic environment, which is a pH below 7.0, can help fight off fungal growth in infections. And of course this is what ACV does.
Fungus can actually secrete acids and alkali to create a stable environment for to grow in, but it only can do so much. If you are constantly bombarding the fungus with a substance that will throw the pH out of its optimal growing range, then it will help kill it off.
There are a fair amount of studies out there on the antifungal effects of vinegar. One such study was done on T. rubrum, which is the most common cause of toenail fungus. According to the study, which is titled The Effect of pH on Fungal Growth, you want to achieve a pH of three or below to kill off T. rubrum. Unfortunately this is difficult to achieve since your comment ACV doesn’t even have a pH of below this level. But anyways… During the study the scientists were able to get the pH down to 3.37 after at 120 applications, which consisted of 30 minute warm vinegar baths.
Another study was done on the popular Candida albicans. What this study showed was that the vinegar helps to stop the production of important enzymes that are needed for cell integrity and biosynthetic pathways, which means in layman’s terms that it helps kill it off. You can check out the study here if interested.
There really isn’t anything to worry about with this treatment. You might experience some itching, and even stinging if you are wounded, but it is all minor.
If you do experience any of this then you can simply remove your feet from the ACV bath and wash them off, or just deal with it.
Before starting the ACV soak you first want to clean up your nails. Trim them up as much as you can and get all the dead stuff off that you are able to. Doing this will allow the ACV to penetrate deeper into the infection where it is needed most.
Making The Bath
What you will need is a large bowl, container, pocket, or just anything that can hold water and you can fit both your feet in, if you have fungus on both of your feet of course.
A good ratio to go by his 1:1, which includes water and ACV. So for every cup of water that you put into the bath you also put a cup of ACV.
Fill up the bath until there is enough of the solution to completely cover your toes and then some. You want to cover the entire area to not only fight the current fungal infection, but also help keep it from spreading to nearby skin or nails.
Once in the bath you are going to want to let your feet soaked for around 15 minutes. This seems to be a good time frame that isn’t too much, but allows the solution to penetrate deep enough.
Other Things You Should Be Doing
Fungus loves the dark and damp environment that he gets when your feet are inside shoes. One of the best things that you can do is simply to let your feet air out more. Get shoes that are more breathable, wear sandals, or maybe wear slides with socks if you are too self-conscious to show your toes off.
UV light is also good for treating fungus because it has germ and fungal killing properties. It probably won’t do much of anything with a well established fungal infection, but it will help keep it from spreading. It should at least be able to kill fungus spores that are trying to spread to other parts of your body.
I’m really trying to make it clear that ACV is a mild antifungal solution. It will likely take weeks for you to notice signs of improvement, if any, and even longer for you to get rid of that nasty fungus completely, which definitely is not a guarantee.
Worse case scenario, it should at least keep it from spreading and getting worse.
Just don’t expect fast results. You will find a lot of people online talking about how this doesn’t work at all when the reality is they just didn’t give it enough time to see any progress. With Apple cider vinegar you cannot expect to start seeing amazing results within a few days.
Apple cider vinegar is well known for being more nutritious than other vinegar is, which is why it is almost always the vinegar of choice when it comes to health issues. That being said… It still does not contain all that much in the way of nutrients.
Your common white vinegar is more used as a cleaning product. But hey… You are cleaning your nails, aren’t you? So why not just use white vinegar?
Well… You could. Much of the results would probably be the same. However, there would be some noticeable downsides, such as it likely being more irritating and not giving your skin the healthy smoothness that you want.
But if for some reason you can’t get your hands on any apple cider vinegar, then go for it.
This all depends on your situation. As I have mentioned, this probably isn’t the best solution for a very severe case of toenail fungus. If you have had toenail fungus for years and the infection is deep in there, you might want to consult with a doctor before potentially wasting your time. But if you’re fungal infection is more mild, or maybe you just started getting an infection, then this is something I would recommend at least considering.
Apple cider vinegar is definitely no miracle worker when it comes to treating fungal infections, but it can work and just might be the solution you’re looking for. Additionally, it is a cheap and very easy solution that you don’t have to worry about. There is no need to worry about potentially harmful side effects because there aren’t really any.
But anyways, the decision is yours. If you are looking for a more aggressive treatment that I recommend then I would suggest taking a look Emuaid MAX.
Also, if you have ever tried the apple cider vinegar treatment then I would appreciate it if you left a review down below. It would help out other readers that are looking into this treatment. Also leave any comments or questions down below and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can 🙂
Kyle is an avid health enthusiast that believes in nature as a cure-all. When he's not drinking spirulina smoothies or dealing with the horrible aftertaste of stevia, he is probably working out, researching healthy herbs, or dealing with hand cramps he gets from writing articles like this.