Apple cider vinegar, or ACV for short, has long been touted as a healthful addition to a balanced diet. If you’re confused as to what it is, how to take it and what health benefits it might bring you, we’ve got the answers you’re looking for. Keep reading for an essential intro to this super versatile ingredient.
The Health Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is made using crushed apples and yeast, which causes the fruit to ferment and become a vinegar, rather than a juice. It has been used for centuries and praised for its health benefits, a number of which have been confirmed by scientific studies. ACV contains potassium, and the good quality stuff also contains healthful amino acids and antioxidants. Taking it regularly may help regulate blood sugar, help ward off harmful bacteria and support weight loss. Used topically, ACV may also help soothe certain skin conditions.
When Is the Best Time to Take ACV?
There is little evidence to suggest that any one time of day is better than another to take apple cider vinegar, but there are still some factors to take into consideration. If you want to take ACV daily, it may be helpful for you to take it at the same time every day so it becomes a habit. If you intend to take it at night, try to keep it to at least 30 minutes before bed. Many people advise taking ACV first thing in the morning, but it’s unclear whether this would have more benefits than taking it at any other time of day. Suggested dosage is 1-2 tablespoons with water before meals — any more than that could represent too much acidity for your body. Taking it on an empty stomach is fine as long as the vinegar is properly diluted.
How to Take ACV
ACV is first and foremost a vinegar, so you can use it as you would any other vinegar in salad dressings and other recipes, like this umami almond butter dipping sauce. Om’s Mighty Beef Bone Broth and Mighty Veggie Miso Broth both contain organic apple cider vinegar (as well as organic functional mushrooms and organic protein), making them a fantastic way to get your daily fix — drink them as a tasty hot drink, or use them in a wide range of recipes. They work perfectly as a replacement for traditional bouillon cubes when cooking quinoa for example, or instead of soy sauce in your favorite stir-fry. As described above, you can simply drink ACV diluted in (hot or cold) water. If you want to drink your vinegar but don’t love the taste, you could mix in some honey for a sweeter tasting solution. Another great option is using it to create an immunity tincture, like this chaga cider tonic. There are many recipes for ACV shots out there, but taking it this way may be too acidic and it’s best to stick to more diluted solutions.
Does ACV Have Any Other Uses?
Though we often only think of ACV as something to drink or mix into food, it has many other surprising uses. It can help neutralize bad smells or clean your home thanks to its antibacterial properties. It’s also widely used as part of skin treatments, foot soaks and hair care, among many other uses for the kitchen, bathroom and entire home.
Apple cider vinegar may very well prove a welcome addition to your daily diet thanks to its proven benefits. The great news is that you can use it in so many different ways, so it’s very easy to seamlessly incorporate into your routine.