We all need a supportive teammate. Someone who can help us succeed, who has lots of tools and tricks to help us win. When it comes to health, one of the best teammates we can have is apple cider vinegar. This ancient medicinal food has been used in traditional cooking for thousands of years, in everything from soups and salad dressings to food preservation. Apple cider vinegar is made from the fermented juice of ripe apples. It has an unmistakable tangy-sweet smell and a distinctive golden color.
Apple cider vinegar has literally hundreds of uses. It can be used to restore the healthy pH balance of the skin and hair. It has been used to successfully treat all manner of skin problems and infections. But as a supplement ac vinegar is unparalleled. Traditionally people would take it for nearly everything that might possibly go wrong in the body. While that might be an exaggeration, here are a few ways this simple brew can have profound effects.
Apple cider vinegar is acidic, and it stimulates the production of beneficial stomach acids. But consuming it raises the pH of the bloodstream, and makes the blood more alkaline. It is much easier to fight or prevent disease when the blood is alkaline. The blood's pH directly affects energy levels, metabolism, immunity, and inflammation. Cooked foods, sugar, processed foods, stress, and toxic environments all make the blood more acidic. Taking a diluted dose of ac vinegar (1-2 teaspoons in a glass of water, 20 minutes before eating) can mitigate some of the acidifying effects of eating certain types of food.
Taking a teaspoon of ac vinegar in a glass of water a few minutes before your meals helps your digestion in several ways:
Apple cider vinegar has been shown to support weight loss efforts. It is a natural appetite suppressant. Taking a teaspoon or two in a glass of water about 20 minutes before a meal helps you feel full sooner, meaning you are less likely to overeat.
AC vinegar naturally helps the liver's detoxification process. When the liver is functioning optimally, toxins are more likely to be passed out of the body rather than being stored as fat. Including ac vinegar in the diet also boosts metabolism, stimulates circulation, and reduces water retention.
A few notable studies have been conducted to measure the effectiveness of ac vinegar for diabetics. One study found that glucose levels in type 2 diabetics were lowered if they took 2 tablespoons of ac vinegar in water before bed. Another study discovered that people with insulin resistance had less spiking of blood sugar levels from a high-carbohydrate meal if they had an ac vinegar drink first.
Apple cider vinegar is naturally anti-glycemic, which means it helps keep blood sugar levels in check. This is helpful for anyone who is trying to prevent or heal from diabetes.
Apple cider vinegar shows some promising signs of being able to help prevent or even heal cancer. This is partly based on the reasons already mentioned - controlling blood sugar levels, increasing stomach acid, and alkalinizing the blood stream.
Some preliminary studies have found that ac vinegar can slow cancer growth even kill cancer cells, but there is not enough evidence to know for certain. But as it has so many other benefits, taking a small amount (1-2 tablespoons in water) daily may prove helpful in healing from cancer.
It also supports the lymphatic system, the cleansing system of the body that directly affects immunity. Consuming AC vinegar breaks up mucus and cleanses the lymph nodes. This translates to fewer toxins remaining trapped in the body's fluids.
It is worth noting that while apple cider vinegar is great for many uses both internally and externally, it is highly acidic. You should always dilute it with water before drinking it, and mix it with water or oil before applying to your skin or hair.
It is important to get organic apple cider vinegar that still has "the Mother" in it. This means it has not been heated or filtered. Apple cider vinegar does not need to be refrigerated. It can go sour after a few years, but it is unlikely that you would have a bottle around for that long.
Extensive use of apple cider vinegar can reduce potassium levels, so be sure you are eating plenty of potassium-rich foods. It also contains chromium, which can alter insulin levels, so diabetics should consult a health care provider before using ac vinegar extensively.
Enjoy using this traditional fermented food to support your health in numerous ways.
This post is contributed by Ron McDiarmid, who is the founder of My Healthy Living Coach. Having had health challenges along the way Ron was keen to share the research and learning he gathered. Through MHLC this continued into a current presentation of healthy lifestyle choices and how to implement them. Check out his website at www.myhealthylivingcoach.com.