If you haven’t already heard enough about Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV), you’re about to hear some more. In an update to ‘Cool things I’ve been doing with Vinegar this week’ I wanted to wax lyrical some more about how amazing ACV is and inspire more ways to replace chemical products with something natural.
Healthy Life Center has a huge list of benefits in its post about using ACV to prevent/cure asthma, arthritis, Eczema, Headaches, Coughs, Varicose Veins, Hayfever etc… whilst I can’t personally report to those benefits I have found it to be wonderful as a digestive, immune booster, great for mild diarrhea, helpful for dry skin (particularly of the scalp), soothing of sunburn, laundry detergent, decongestant (in the form of fire cider in particular!).
Use a 1/2 cup to a cup of standard vinegar in your laundry load to clean clothes naturally. Add a good sprinkle of bicarbonate of soda if the clothes are particularly dirty. It works so well. There is no vinegar odor at the end. Just clean clothes. This is especially good if you’re using the gray water in the garden and for anybody normally investing in eco laundry detergent. Way cheaper to pick up a big bottle of white vinegar from the supermarket. Feel free to use ACV if you’re feeling flush or have mastered making your own!
Conditioning Hair Rinse
Rinsing my hair with a dilution of ACV has finally given me the thicker, healthier hair I longed for in my twenties! After washing my hair with a lush shampoo bar or plain old bicarbonate of soda (yep, works a treat and finally no itchiness from shampoo!) I grab my diluted with water ACV bottle and squirt it into the roots, a little bit on the ends and then I rub it in and leave it to sit and soothe whilst I get on with the body cleansing. Before you ask, yes you can use ACV to cleanse the body, especially good if you have eczema. I lightly rinse the ACV rinse out of my hair, but you can also leave in if you don’t mind the vinegar smell!
Stomach soother & stimulater
For a more serious stomach upset, medical advice should obviously be consulted, but if you have a slightly jippy tum, then a shot of ACV can work wonders. I met the inspirational Jamie Ramsay in Costa Rica, where he’d ran about 8000 of his current 17,000 kilometers from Vancouver through the Americas and Central America for CALM, Macmillan and Wateraid. Running the equivalent of almost a marathon per day, an upset stomach from drinking dodgy water could really break into your stride. I gave him a shot of ACV and the next day he was feeling much better and ready to run onwards to Panama.
I have found it also has the effect of stimulating my digestion and can be used as a digestif if you’ve found yourself indulging over the holiday period. The digestion can be the key to good health and immunity, stimulating the digestive fire helps everything run more effectively. Despite being acidic, the way it is metabolized by the body, it is concerned alkaline. This makes it good for smooth, healthy running of the body – the joints, mind and immune system! Some people prefer to water down their shot of ACV but I like to just shoot it down neat.
ACV is a key ingredient to Fire Cider which is an immune boosting, firey shot of chilli, turmeric, ginger, garlic and traditionally horseradish. More to follow soon!
Recipe for fermented pineapple (aka vinegar) drink
I made a fermentation using the rind cut off the pineapple. This should be done using an organic pineapple otherwise you will be imbibing any chemicals on the surface. Place the rind into a large jar – 2 – 3 liters should work and submerge in fresh water. Cutting the rind into small pieces aids the fermentation. The process can be stimulated by adding a dash of ACV which has the ‘mother’ in. Cover with a paper towel / cloth and secure with an elastic band. Leave to ferment for about 3 – 5 days, the process will depend upon the temperature and attracting the good bacteria to the jar. The liquid will change from smelling of pineapple sweetness and turn towards vinegar. Strain and bottle when you feel it is ready and dilute with water to drink. Particularly good taken as a tonic with meals.
This is part of the mexican tradition but they add sugar and if the pineapple is sweet enough you shouldn’t really need it for the fermentation… the taste however is something altogether different and personal.
I have on the occasion that I felt a scratch in my throat or a warning runny nose, increased my intake of ACV and managed to nip the cold in the bud. Admittedly that mostly happened when I had fallen out of my ACV routine. Again, I would have to state I am not a medical health professional, this is only from my experience and if you think you have a more serious problem with your immune system you should probably visit your doctor. If you are living a healthy lifestyle (with regards to food, alcohol, smoking etc) then ACV can help you stay healthy, I’m not sure it could help out a Rolling Stone if they were on a proper bender.
Linked to immunity I have found it helpful to clear mucus. When taking a shot of ACV, particularly Fire Cider, my sinuses drain as it clears the mucus. This is particularly useful if a cold sneaked through your best efforts and you want to decongest.
Mix equal parts distilled white vinegar with warm water and put in a spray bottle to come to the cleaning rescue. Clean surfaces and floors with vinegar power instead of chemicals. Just avoid granite tops and hardwood floors say the people of Goodhousekeeping. Many more uses as a household cleaner / item here! If that’s too much of a stretch for your cleaning OCD, then I highly recommend Dr Bronner’s Sal Suds as a natural alternative to flash and Mr Muscle and is far nicer on the hands.
I spent a wonderful two months at the Flutterby house in Costa Rica last year and when i missed a spot of suncream application, partook of the vinegar spray that was supposed to be for cleaning the surfaces in the bar. It soothed my sunburn instantly.
If that all hasn’t inspired you to make more of your Apple Cider Vinegar bottle (always buy raw / with the mother not pasteurized) it makes a wicked salad dressing too. Creamy, firey, avocado salad dressing recipe to follow!
Any other uses I’ve missed?