Imagine an elixir that helps with indigestion, eczema, high cholesterol, dandruff, acne, allergies, dull hair, even sunburn. It's magical, delicious and affordable—it's apple cider vinegar. ACV works wonders on the body internally and externally, as well as around the home.
Apple cider vinegar is made by first crushing apples, then adding water and a sweetener, such as honey or sugar. The mixture is allowed to sit for several weeks where it'll have the opportunity to ferment. During fermentation, the mixture becomes alcoholic. The liquid is then strained off and allowed to sit for several weeks more where it'll grow acidic. When the desired acidity and taste is achieved, the resulting liquid is strained of any large debris and this is what we know and love as apple cider vinegar.
When shopping for apple cider vinegar, look for the 'mother'. It's the cloudy, string-like debris sitting at the bottom of every bottle. We always choose an organic raw vinegar bottled in glass as the acidity of vinegar can leech chemicals from plastic bottles. We are partial to Bragg's because it is everything we hope for in an ACV and easy to find. If you want to go the DIY route, it's a cinch to make at home. Try this recipe.
Use apple cider vinegar generously in salads dressing, with soups, or in a spritzer to get a healthy dose internally. Mix it with equal parts water as a cleaning spray for spotless counters and glass. (The vinegar smell disappears in a matter of minutes and helps lift odors from surfaces too.) Massage it into your hair and scalp for a healthy and natural rinse. Add it to make a mask keep oily skin under control or apply on skin affected by eczema or poison ivy for itch relief.
Let your cider vinegar live on the counter. ACV doesn't require refrigeration and you'll want it handy for your food, beauty and health needs.
(Image courtesy of Annie Spratt + Bragg)