Stay Fit and Healthy with Apple Cider Vinegar
As you glance over my blog, you’ll see I place a lot of emphasis on physical fitness . . . exercise, cardio workouts, and the like.
But equally important is your internal fitness. The fitness at the cellular level.
Having said that, this post will focus on internal fitness.
My own internal fitness started when I was a boy – thanks to my mom. She prepared lots of nutritious meals, gave me cod liver oil daily, and saw to it that I ate lots of fruits and vegetables.
Mom was especially big on apples. Almost one every day. She believed in the old saying that “an apple a day keeps the doctor away.”
I think there’s a lot of merit to what mom believed. After all, it was one reason why I enjoyed such good health – never missing a school day from the 2nd grade through high school and six years of college.
Of course, there were other reasons for my good health besides eating apples, but I’ll talk about those another time.
Anyway, I still eat apples today, but only if they’re organic. Keep in mind that non-organic apples top the “dirty dozen” list of produce most contaminated with pesticides.
Besides enjoying juicy, sweet apples immensely, I take satisfaction knowing they’re high in fiber and micronutrients, including beneficial compounds called polyphenols. And not only that, but a new study shows that eating two apples a day may help lower high cholesterol.
But nowadays, I’m also drinking apple cider vinegar (ACV).
And why not? After all, ACV is made from apples. Yet, it provides many additional benefits:
- Lowers blood sugar levels
- Lowers cholesterol
- Improves insulin sensitivity
- Improves heart health
- Reduces bloating and belly fat
- Aids heartburn
- Lowers high blood pressure
- Kills bacteria
- Makes you feel fuller, so it helps you lose weight
- Decreases cancer risk
- Contains anti-aging properties
- Helps reduce acne
- Makes the body alkaline, as opposed to acidic (an acidic environment in the body promotes sickness and disease)
- Comes with many antioxidants, minerals, vitamins and trace elements, including potassium, iron, magnesium, malic acid, calcium, pectin, ash, enzymes, copper, phosphorous, silicon, vitamins A, C, E, P, B1, B2, B6, and other nutrients
While some folks think ACV is a modern concoction, they’d be wrong. It’s reportedly an ancient health tonic said to have been used by the “Father of Modern Medicine,” Hippocrates, more than 2,000 years ago.
Modern science concurs with Hippocrates. ACV is a healthy remedy for many things that ail you.
What We Know About Apple Cider Vinegar
ACV is a type of vinegar made when apple cider is fermented.
The process starts by crushing raw sweet apples. Bacteria and yeast are introduced to the process so that the apple’s natural sugar is fermented and turned into alcohol.
At this stage, you’ve got alcoholic apple cider. But the process includes one more step. The apple cider is fermented a second time and is converted into vinegar by acetic-forming bacteria.
ACV can help detoxify and purify your body, while the amino acid in ACV acts as an antiseptic and antibiotic. Meanwhile, the acetic acid in ACV can help treat fungal and bacterial infections.
The best ACV – the one I drink daily – is Bragg Organic, Raw, Unfiltered Apple Cider Vinegar. It’s gluten-free and made from cold pressed, organically grown whole apples – with no chemicals or preservatives added.
Bragg does not pasteurize, refine, or filter the ACV, so it contains what is known as “The Mother.” The “Mother” is a combination of proteins, enzymes, and friendly bacteria that gives ACV a somewhat cloudy appearance and, more importantly, most of its health benefits.
Word to the wise: Avoid buying pasteurized ACV. Pasteurization eliminates “The Mother,” which in turn eliminates many of the nutrients that the organic unpasteurized vinegar provides.
How Do You Take Apple Cider Vinegar
ACV can be taken or used in a variety of ways, including . . .
- Salad dressings
- Marinade recipes
- In a lemon and detox tea
- Mixed with stevia, ground ginger and filtered water
- Barbeque sauce
I normally add 2 tablespoons to filtered water and drink it before my noon meal. You could also add it to a glass of fruit juice, if you prefer.
Sometimes I combine ACV and water with organic blackstrap molasses or honey for extra vitamins and minerals.
For detoxification and cleansing, try this:
- 8 ounces of warm, filtered water
- 1 tablespoon of Bragg Organic Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1 tablespoon of fresh-squeezed lemon juice
- ¼ teaspoon of ground ginger
- 1-2 tablespoons of raw, organic honey (or pure maple syrup)
- Dash of cayenne pepper
Another option for detoxing and cleansing is to try Bragg Apple Cider Vinegar Concentrate Miracle Cleanse. It includes organic honey, organic lemon juice, and organic cayenne.
I enjoy taking the Cleanse from time to time. Simply add 2 ounces (4 tablespoons) of the Cleanse to 8 ounces of purified or distilled water.
I’ll drink it 2 times a day to help rid my body of toxins and unwanted substances and support proper functioning of my liver and kidneys.
Unwanted Effects of Apple Cider Vinegar
Although ACV is a healthy substance, you need to exercise caution when taking or using it. For instance, it’s not recommended if you have a stomach ulcer or kidney problems.
Other things to be aware of . . .
- Drinking ACV straight without diluting it can weaken or damage tooth enamel and even lead to tooth decay . . . it can also burn your mouth or throat.
- Drinking too much can cause indigestion. Drink in moderation.
- Drinking several ounces daily for long periods of time can reduce potassium levels in your body. Again, drink in moderation.
- Applying it directly to your skin may result in burning, especially if you intend to soothe sunburn, treat acne, or an infection. It’s always best to dilute it with water.
- Check with your physician before using ACV if you’re taking diuretics or other medications as it may react negatively with some medications.
This bears repeating again . . . drink ACV in moderation.
Most people can safely consume reasonable amounts of ACV. Start with a small amount at first, say 1 tablespoon in 8 ounces of water, then gradually work up to a maximum of 2 tablespoons per day.
If you have any experiences with ACV, good or bad, please feel free to leave a comment.