ACV, Easy as 1-2-3: The Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar
Does anyone else love the sour taste of apple cider vinegar? How it makes your mouth pucker from that delicious tangy bite? No? Just me? I think it’s time to get you all on board with ACV!
I’ve always enjoyed the taste of vinegar. Growing up, I ate all the pickled veggies anyone would offer me-and I grew up in the south, so that means a LOT of pickled veggies. This was all before I even know of the benefits of fermented foods, especially apple cider vinegar. And let me tell you, there are a lot of benefits!
First of all, most of us have a body ph that’s too acidic. When our body is too acidic, we feel decreased energy, we’re more likely to get infections, and cancer thrives in an acidic environment. So to combat this, we need to eat more foods that promote an alkaline ph. It may be news to you, but foods that taste acidic- like lemon juice or ACV- actually form alkaline “ash” during digestion, therefore promoting a more alkaline system. Some of the best alkaline-producing foods are vegetables, some fruits, and fermented foods. Acidic foods include meat, dairy and processed food. I’ll go further into the alkaline diet in another post-it makes so much sense to adjust your ph to a healthier state by eating more of the right foods and less of the bad stuff. For those of you that aren’t super fans of the pungent liquid, just keep reading for a drinkable ACV recipe!
Another major benefit of consuming ACV is that it helps to regulate blood sugar levels. Consuming a tablespoon or two of ACV fifteen minutes before (carb-heavy) meals helps you feel full quicker on less food, reduces blood sugar levels and decreases insulin resistance. Studies show that it may even promote insulin production! It’s also a good idea to have some before bed. Drinking it before bed helps with fasting glucose levels. This is really helpful for diabetics or pre-diabetics, as apple cider vinegar has the benefits of a few medications doctors prescribe to diabetic patients.
Even non-diabetics can reap the benefits! ACV may help with weight loss. As I said earlier, drinking the tangy tonic before eating helps you fill up quicker, so you eat less. Filling up on less food, quicker, leads to reduced caloric intake which helps you lose weight! Don’t forget to exercise regularly for maximum effect!
Apple cider vinegar aids in digestion as well. It helps to prevent indigestion, heartburn and gas. We all know that our stomach is a sack filled with acid, but there are lot of people that lack some enzymes and sufficient acids to digest food optimally. The healthy acids in ACV assist in this process. It’s a much better option to take ACV instead of an acid blocker if you suffer from digestive issues, since suppressing acid in your stomach can cause damage down the road. The bacteria in ACV are also prebiotics, or food for the good bacteria in our intestines.
Now we know some of the reasons why apple cider vinegar is so good for us to consume, and when to take it, so next I’ll give you a recipe for a tolerable drink using this elixir.
Start with an organic, raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar, with “the Mother”. The Mother is a slimy substance in the bottom of a bottle of ACV. It may make your vinegar look cloudy. The Mother is actually a strain of bacteria that ferments the vinegar, giving it that characteristic sourness. It’s also an important part of vinegar, containing nutrients. ACV without the Mother has been filtered and pasteurized, therefore losing most of the nutritional benefits. Make sure you get the right stuff!
This recipe is super simple. To a glass of warm water, add one tablespoon of ACV (shake the bottle first to get some of the Mother!), and 1 tablespoon of (raw) honey. Squeeze the juice of a lemon wedge and stir until combined. Drink immediately. You can dilute the mixture so the vinegar taste isn’t as strong, but adding the honey and lemon helps a whole lot. Or, if you’re a champ and just want to get it down as quickly as possible, use less water and take it as a shot. Personally, I don’t mind it either way. I usually don’t even add honey!
If you're feeling fancy and have more time, simmer a cup or two of water with a cinnamon stick and some slices of ginger. Add honey and let cool. Pour into a glass or mug and then add the vinegar and lemon juice. It will taste even better! Plus cinnamon and ginger are also known to aid in digestion.
My morning routine usually consists of drinking a huge glass of water, then I’ll brush my teeth (it’s better for your enamel to brush before or 1 hour after drinking lemon juice or coffee). I make a cup of this tonic, think of a few things I’m grateful for and drink it down. Try adding ACV to your daily routine! - N