(NaturalNews) Vinegar has been used in kitchen recipes for hundreds of years, but it's valuable for more than cooking. It's a natural disinfectant, a cleanser, and a health supplement as well. Here are ten new ways to use vinegar around the house:
1. It makes glass sparkle. White vinegar added to water makes a wonderful cleaning agent for windows. It will even remove mildew that builds up outside, making it a perfect cleanser for greenhouses and garage windows.
2. With its natural antiseptic qualities, it is a safe kitchen cleaner. A small amount mixed with water can disinfect counters, the refrigerator, and stove top. The front of the dishwasher, the oven door and window, the sink and faucets are areas that benefit from a quick wipe down with a vinegar and water mixture.
3. The natural anti-bacterial properties of vinegar can be used on minor cuts and bruises. Wrapping a bruise in brown paper that has been soaked with vinegar was a method of drawing out bruising since medieval times, and is being rediscovered today.
4. Vinegar can be used to soothe some symptoms of the common cold. Added to a mixture of honey and lemon juice, organic vinegar can be used as a natural cough controller.
5. Vinegar is a natural weed killer when poured undiluted in driveway and sidewalk cracks. It can also keep ants out of the house when sprayed across door jambs and window sills.
6. Raccoons and rabbits will stay out of the garden when vinegar is there. Cotton balls can be soaked in vinegar and then placed in small plastic containers with holes punched in the tops. The scent will even keep cats away from your flower beds. But care should be taken not to spill vinegar on grass or garden plants as it can be harmful to them.
7. And on the other hand, some plants appreciate the acidic value of vinegar. Azaleas in particular will flourish when two tablespoons of vinegar are added to a quart of water and poured around the base of the plants.
8. Outdoor fixtures like water faucets and exposed pipes can be cleaned with diluted vinegar. The casing for the air conditioning unit and pool pump can also benefit from a quick shower with a vinegar and water mixture.
9. Vinegar offers many health benefits. Added to a glass of water with honey first thing in the morning, organic apple cider vinegar has been shown to lower bad cholesterol and control blood sugar. It can be added to fruit juice or to salad dressings as well.
10. Vinegar makes a safe vegetable and fruit wash. One tablespoon of white vinegar in a quart of water can be sprayed on apples, cucumbers, and other foods. Rinsed with water, they are then clean and tasty.
Almost every kitchen contains a bottle of vinegar. Inexpensive and safe, it has many more uses than simple salad dressings.
Elizabeth Walling is a freelance writer specializing in health and family nutrition. She is a strong believer in natural living as a way to improve health and prevent modern disease. She enjoys thinking outside of the box and challenging common myths about health and wellness. You can visit her blog to learn more: www.livingthenourishedlife.com/2009/10/welco...