Apple cider vinegar (ACV) has been used for many, many years. It is purported to have many health benefits. ACV contains 17 amino acids as well as potassium, manganese, and phosphorous. It also contains B1, B6, and B12. The malic acid in ACV is attributed to cleaning clogged arteries, lymph nodes, and organ tissues; detoxifying the whole body and reducing inflammation. It can bring out-of-whack cholesterol levels back into a normal range. It aids in digestion and regulates sugar levels. ACV eliminates candida, a type of yeast that causes thrush and infections. Candida is also rumored to cause fatigue and poor memory. Externally, ACV can help heal acne and warts. It’s also a great facial toner and hair conditioner.
The ACV that gives these benefits is not the clear Heinz vinegar that we have grown up with. That vinegar has no benefits beyond making salad dressing. All the good stuff has been filtered and cooked out. You want organic, unfiltered, and unpasteurized ACV. When you see it, you will probably think “Eewww!” The good stuff is brown and cloudy with sediment floating about. That sediment is the vinegar mother, much like a sourdough mother. This is where all the enzymes and good stuff reside. The most popular brand is Bragg. Check out bragg.com for great info and more ACV benefits.
Now I know there are some brave (and crazy!) people that drink it straight, but that’s not recommended. Mix 2 tsp. organic apple juice with 2-3 tsp. ACV (make sure to shake first) with 8 ounces water. Use raw honey as a sweetener. Have a problem with sugar? Use stevia instead. Drink through a straw to protect your teeth from the acid. Drink in the morning on an empty stomach and again before dinner to aid digestion. Always check with your physician if you are on medication as ACV may have contraindications with some heart medications. As with anything else, start slowly and see if you reap the benefits. Of course, it is always recommended that you stay away from sweets, salty snacks, and processed foods. Eat more fruits, vegetables, and lean protein. But you knew that already, right?
KATHLEEN WEAVER-ZECH & DEAN’S TEAM CHICAGO