Author: Holly J Coley
Apple cider vinegar. It’s the OG of remedies. Celebrities like Megan Fox and Beyonce swear it helps them stay slim. Holistic gurus praise it for its nutritional properties. I’m reluctant to drink the Kool-Aid of any “super” concoction that get’s a lot of hype but then again, it’s received a lot of hype and a girl gets curious.
I’ve been especially curious in the last few months when a friend of mine (who’s been looking particularly svelte and amazing) mentioned drinking it every morning. And after having a recent and ongoing bout of stomach issues, I decided to give it a go. Anyway, it’s sort of my job to drink the Kool-Aid for you guys, so you know whether you should or shouldn’t.
Before I share how it went, allow me to give you the rundown on all the magical claims surrounding ACV.
Apple cider vinegar is made from combining crushed apples with yeast. This process turns it into alcohol. From there bacteria is added, making it an acetic acid-the major component of vinegar. If you look at a bottle of the unfiltered kind, you’ll notice amber colored scum at the bottom that almost appears smokey. That is a mixture of enzymes, good bacteria and proteins. Allegedly, that’s where ACV gets its magic.
We say allegedly because while apple cider vinegar has been linked to weight loss, appetite suppression, shinier hair, wart removal and a whole mess of other things, if you look for scientific studies backing it up, things get as murky as the bottom of a bottle of Bragg.
There have been a few interesting studies done, like the one showing that it improves insulin sensitivity when taken before eating a carb heavy meal. This is a big deal if you’re diabetic. You can read more about that study here . A 2009 study found that individuals who took the vinegar lost weight. There has also been some studies linking ACV to the shrinkage of cancer cells and tumors. Check out one of those studies here. So, yes. It appears that it’s not all hype and that it’s worth trying. It has a little of potassium and amino acids too, so there’s also always that.
Here’s why I wanted to try it: As I mentioned before, I’ve been experiencing stomach problems (bloating, elimination issues) and food cravings. I really wanted to flush myself out without having to do some sort of juice fast and while I know the liver detoxes itself naturally, I’m of the party that believes it’s good to help it along from time to time because our foods have chemicals, the environment has toxins, and frankly, most of us-myself included-live stressful lives that don’t allow us to hang in a peaceful little bubble, void of contaminants. If drinking ACV could help my bloat and discomfort, I was game.
WHAT I DID + ACV DETOX TEA RECIPE
For a week straight, I made the following concoction:
1-2 Tbsp of ACV (organic and unfiltered) + 2-3 squeezes of lemon juice + 1 Tbsp of honey or maple syrup + 8-16oz of hot water.
I generally made this in the morning on an empty stomach. I started with just one tablespoon of ACV because I read it can be sort of harsh the first time. With the honey and lemon I found it rather pleasant though and soon boosted it to two tablespoons. When I did that I made sure I went from using eight ounces of water to sixteen. If you’re not using enough water, you’ll know. The smell alone will hit you something fierce. I do not recommend exceeding more than two tablespoons at one time and experts say to keep this drink to a once or twice a day thing. It’s still fairly acidic and you want to watch out for hurting your teeth enamel and throat lining.
A lot of people report their system “flushing out” right away. By flushing out I mean pooping. Come on, we’re all adults here. I didn’t experience that, though it did help move things along a bit. On days I didn’t have time to sit and sip the tea I would fix it in the afternoon instead as a sort of “pick me up.” I really liked the taste which was like a lemon tea with sass. Apple cider vinegar is sweet on its own, so when mixed with the honey it was rather nice. My bloat did get better after a few days but I don’t know if I can contribute that to the ACV or the copious amounts of water I’ve been drinking, the hemp I’ve been adding to my morning smoothies, or my praying not to feel like I had swallowed a chihuahua.
AFTERTHOUGHTS + CAUTION
After a week of making this part of my routine, I’ve decided I’m pro ACV but not for the reasons everyone claims. As mentioned above, I don’t know if I can credit it for any amazing results but I do like that it resulted in me drinking more water, even if only a glass or two. I also like how it forced me to slow down for a little bit (I’d made my tea super hot). Taking time to be quiet and practice mindfulness is important and I don’t do it enough. When I was enjoying my tea I usually took the time to journal or read. It was a lovely gift to give myself on the regular. That’s reason alone for me to keep drinking the stuff, though I know I don’t need a cup of ACV detox tea to do that.