Every fall in America, there are some traditions we always do as a family. Some of the traditions are watching football, carving pumpkins, and picking apples at the local orchard. This fall, when you are at your local orchard picking apples and drinking apple cider, take a moment to think about the benefits of those apples. Specifically, one beneficial (perhaps the most) by-product of those apples – is raw apple cider vinegar or raw ACV.
What Is Raw Apple Cider Vinegar?
The origins of vinegar (derived from wine) date back to over 10,000 years ago. It’s one of the great accidental discoveries in history. Some wine was left out too long, and it turned into an acidic substance the French call vinaigre, which means sour wine. Coconut, sugarcane, grains, potatoes, corn, yeast, and fruit can also produce vinegar.
The Aryans created sour apple wine in 2500 BC. This beverage is the precursor to raw ACV and made its way through the Mediterranean area. Years later, the Greeks and Romans would take sour apple wine a step further and develop raw apple cider vinegar.
How Raw Apple Cider Vinegar Is Made
To make raw ACV, apples need to go through a process called fermentation. It’s a two-part process in which the juice is collected (through crushing) from the apples. Then yeast is added, starting the fermentation process and converting sugar into alcohol.
In the next part of the fermentation process, alcohol is converted into vinegar by adding bacteria and creating acetic acid. The potent smell of vinegar comes from acetic acid. This whole process can take 4 – 6 weeks, depending on the desired strength of the acetic acid.
Raw Apple Cider Vinegar and the “Mother”
Raw ACV is unfiltered and unpasteurized apple cider vinegar. It will have a cloudy appearance and contain some sediment. This is called the “Mother” – powerful proteins, enzymes, and healthy bacteria. “Mother” is produced during the fermentation process.
What Is the Difference Between Apple Cider Vinegar, Apple Cider, Hard Cider, and Apple Juice?
So raw apple cider vinegar is the juice from the apples that ferment until they contain acetic acid and are not filtered or pasteurized. Then what is the apple cider we Americans drink in the fall time? Generally, apple cider is juice. This apple juice comes from apples that are cut up and mashed, then boiled. From there, you can buy it as is or pasteurized and filtered.
There is also the alcoholic apple cider, or as we call it in America, hard cider. This beverage is apple cider that has fermented, similar to what happens in the first step of making raw ACV. This type of cider is popular in the United Kingdom and other countries. Over there, they call it cider.
And we can’t forget the most popular apple beverage – apple juice. Apple juice is usually apple cider pasteurized and filtered, making it more translucent than apple cider. It can also contain added sugar.
The Health Benefits of Raw Apple Cider Vinegar
There has been much dispute over the health benefits of raw apple cider vinegar. During ancient Greek times, Hippocrates advised people to take raw ACV for colds, infections, and other conditions. Christopher Columbus stored it on his ships to hinder scurvy.
In the last century, DeForest Clinton Jarvis (D.C. Jarvis) wrote in his 1958 book Folk Medicine: A Vermont Doctor’s Guide to Good Health that raw ACV and honey, if taken three times a day, could heal common illnesses like asthma, high blood pressure, colds, rheumatism, arthritis, and improve energy.
Are These Ten Acclaimed Health Benefits of Raw Apple Cider Vinegar True?
These health benefits of raw apple cider vinegar come from the research available at the time of publishing.
High Blood Pressure:
Can we lower our blood pressure by consuming raw ACV? As of right now, no studies or research shows it can.
Some studies show that vinegar may have some anti-cancer properties, but nothing that proves it will cure cancer.
A few studies have shown that raw apple cider vinegar, if taken after eating a meal, will reduce blood glucose insulin, and triglyceride levels. There is nothing that proves it will cure it.
First off, raw ACV does not contain any calories. So drinking it is certainly not going to add any extra calories to your diet. But does it make you lose weight? Drinking raw ACV will help you lose weight, and some studies prove it.
One 12-week study proved that ingesting vinegar daily lowered body weight, BMI, visceral fat area, waist circumference, and serum triglyceride levels. If you want to lose weight and keep it off, you must also change your lifestyle: diet, exercise, and stay active. Raw ACV can help, but it’s not a magic pill that will get you the body you desire overnight.
First off, our bodies automatically detoxify themselves (that’s what the liver does). Furthermore, there aren’t any studies that prove detox drinks will remove toxins from your body. Whether you are trying to lose weight or detox your body, you need to change your lifestyle and what you are consuming. Raw ACV may aid in improving your overall body and wellness, but it alone isn’t going to do it.
While most people think raw apple cider vinegar is a probiotic, it isn’t. It only contains pectin from the fermented apples. Pectin stimulates the development of healthy bacteria called probiotics. Pectin will bind to waste products in your digestive tract to aid in getting rid of them. This process leaves the probiotics behind to thrive and guard your digestive system.
A randomized clinical trial of apple cider vinegar and a restricted-calorie diet on obese and overweight individuals proved it would increase their HDL-C concentration (the good cholesterol). Their total cholesterol also decreased.
Skin Infections and Eczema:
No research or studies prove raw apple cider vinegar will cure eczema or infections. But what is known is that it is acidic, and therefore it will help lower high skin pH levels. Raw ACV also contains antibacterial and antifungal properties that help sterilize your skin.
Can raw apple cider vinegar boost your energy level? No studies or research shows it can, but many people drink it for this specific reason. Raw ACV contains amino acids and potassium in addition to enzymes. Amino acids can help neutralize lactic acid (soreness) in your muscles and get you moving again. Potassium and enzymes can help hydrate your body.
Were Hippocrates and D.C. Jarvis correct when they said raw apple cider vinegar could cure colds? There is a lot of information and recipes for this all-natural remedy on the internet.
But regardless of what you find, 90% of colds are viral, meaning there isn’t really anything you can take for them. They clear up on their own. But warming up and drinking raw ACV may help break up congestion and relieve a sore throat but don’t rely on it to cure you.
Want to try an all-natural healthy raw apple cider vinegar drink that I drink every morning?
– 20 ounces of water
– 2 tablespoons of raw apple cider vinegar
– half a cup of lemon juice
– 1 tablespoon of honey
– half a teaspoon of cayenne pepper
Drink first thing in the morning when you get up.
Side Effects – Can You Drink Too Much Raw Apple Cider Vinegar?
It’s best to do things in moderation, and it’s the same for consuming raw ACV. As mentioned earlier, raw ACV is an acid, and drinking too much of it may irritate your esophagus and stomach. It may also deteriorate your tooth enamel. When consuming raw ACV, always dilute it with water. You may also want to rinse your mouth with water after drinking it.
Other Benefits of Raw Apple Cider Vinegar – Use It to Clean Your Home
The acetic acid in vinegar is what makes it such a great cleaner. Raw ACV contains about 5-6% of acetic acid, which is about the same as white vinegar. It’s also free of harsh chemicals, artificial ingredients, and toxins and safe to use around children and pets.
What Can I Clean with Raw Apple Cider Vinegar?
Clean the mirror, toilet, sink, and bathtub with it. Use it with baking soda to unclog your bathtub or sink’s drain.
Forget commercial window cleaners. Raw apple cider vinegar will clean your windows without leaving any streaks.
Add a cup of raw ACV to a load of laundry to refresh and remove odor.
Warning: Do not use on anything wood, any type of natural stone, or any type of egg mess.
Benefits for Outside Your Home
Have a garden? Raw ACV is great as a fertilizer for plants such as hydrangeas, blueberry bushes, daffodils, and azaleas. These plants love acid, and raw ACV will help balance the pH in the soil resulting in a beautiful blooming garden.
Raw ACV can also deter bugs, rodents, and even your house pets from leaving their mark on backyard horticulture.
Now It’s up to You to Decide (Conclusion)
As you can see, raw apple cider vinegar is a natural, versatile liquid that has a long-evolving past. In the last century, it was rediscovered and studied for its health benefits.
Lately, it has been hailed as an all-natural cure-all and recommended as a cleaning agent and fertilizer. Now it’s up to you to decide.