Sunday, November 24, 2013

Our Super Not-Secret Health Tonic: Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple Cider Vinegar Benefits
I could write a lengthy post about why raw apple cider vinegar (ACV) is good for you. But there are plenty of resources that have already done that. They claim that apple cider vinegar does the following:
  • Increases calcium absorption, reduces nighttime cramping, or eases sore throats.
  • Helps with sinus drainage/mucus, eases indigestion, and aids detoxing.
  • Shortens the length of a cold, boosts the immune system, and helps fight constipation.
  • Helps stabilize your blood pressure and balance your blood sugar. 
I could write lots about apple cider vinegar. But since I’m not a medical professional or a scientist, let me just tell you 4 reasons why I personally choose to take ACV on a daily basis.

My Personal Reasons
1. I believe it helps correct the body’s pH balance, making one less susceptible to bugs and viruses. There’s lots of fascinating information about our body’s pH balance. “Folk Medicine” by Dr. D.C. Jarvis is a great place to start.

2. I believe it helps curb mindless hunger cravings. Maybe because it tastes good. Maybe because it helps me stay hydrated. Maybe because the fiber content helps give me that “I’m full” feeling. Maybe because it increases the metabolism and boosts digestive capabilities. I don’t know how or why it works – but I’ll take it!

3. I believe it helps knock out sore throats by killing bad germs on contact. (Related to #1)

4. I believe it helps detox our bodies. When the little people in my life are fighting an illness, we’ll give them an extra cup of water with a little ACV mixed in. They suck it down like candy. I’m always amazed how quickly they will scamper to the bathroom afterwards; just drinking plain water doesn’t do that to them! ACV helps flush the kidneys, liver, and lower digestive tract in a gentle and beneficial way.

Stressed? Sick? Chilled?
I find that when I’m stressed, my body craves ACV. In his book, Folk Medicine, Dr. Jarvis repeatedly mentions 2-year studies he ran testing urine with litmus paper (on both children and adults). When the body is healthy and not under duress, the urine showed an acid reaction on the paper. However, both emotional stress AND physical illness would push that reaction toward an alkaline response. According to Jarvis, an alkaline environment leaves the body vulnerable. By taking ACV – sometimes within a day – the urine began shifting back toward an acid balance.

Have you ever wondered why you get sick when the temperature drops? According to Jarvis, a drop in temperature also shifts the body into an alkaline (weakened) state.

Odds are, if you’ve made it this far into this post … I don’t need to convince you to take apple cider vinegar on a regular basis. Rather, let me show you HOW my family takes it.


The Nitty Gritty
We [try to] take a daily dose of ACV. We mix raw apple cider vinegar with raw honey -- which also has great benefits! -- in approximately a 50/50 solution. You can add a little more honey or a little more vinegar … the choice is yours.
L-R: Raw (Local! Woot!) Honey, ACV/Honey Mix, ACV
Then we combine it and store in a glass jar on the shelf, ready to use. Some people store it in a bottle and pour from a decanter. We occasionally get fruit flies in the house and I don’t like floaters. So we just keep it mixed up in a mason jar. Sometimes I use crystallized raw honey and whiz it in the blender.

Then we add two large spoonfuls to a glass of water. There’s no harm in adding it to grape juice or apple juice, if that’s your vehicle of choice! And no harm in doing one spoonful at a time! The important thing is to get it on a consistent basis.

My kids call it “honey water,” but I think it tastes like a delicate ginger ale. Delicious!

What Type of Vinegar?
Be sure to purchase RAW apple cider vinegar, ideally with the words “with the mother” printed on the side. That means it’s a living ferment and contains probiotics, like yogurt. I purchase mine from Azure Standard by the gallon for a really great price; you can also find brands like Braggs or Spectrum at the grocery store and even at the military commissary.

And it needs to be APPLE CIDER vinegar, not white/red wine/rice/balsamic … or any of the other varieties.

So raise your glass of Honey Water high and enjoy your Apple Cider Vinegar!



Resources:

Folk Medicine, D. C. Jarvis: (from Amazon)

Articles worth consideration:
http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/06/02/apple-cider-vinegar-hype.aspx
http://www.webmd.com/diet/apple-cider-vinegar?page=2
http://health.howstuffworks.com/wellness/food-nutrition/facts/the-health-benefits-of-vinegar2.htm
http://www.rd.com/slideshows/8-health-benefits-of-apple-cider-vinegar/
http://bragg.com/healthinfo/acvdaily.html




I'm a humble stay-at-home mom. I am not a doctor or medical professional. Be smart: "Always consult your physician before beginning any kind of anything." I'm not responsible or liable for any actions you take based on the information I've provided. Just use your common sense. And let's enjoy learning along the way together.