Raise a glass of ACV! Here’s how to use apple cider vinegar to help soothe your stomach.
If you’re battling gut problems, you’re not alone. In fact, roughly 70 million Americans battle digestive diseases like constipation, reflux, and IBS. (1)
Fortunately, apple cider vinegar might be one of the best natural remedies you can get your hands on. Raw apple cider vinegar, in particular, can help improve your digestion, leading to clearer skin, better nutrient absorption, and even a stronger detox system.
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Here’s how to use apple cider vinegar in order to feel your absolute best.
What is Apple Cider Vinegar?
Apple cider vinegar is made using a two-step process. The first step involves adding yeast to apple juice. The sugars are then broken down and turned into alcohol.
Next, beneficial bacteria are added to the alcohol solution to further enhance the fermentation process. This creates a cloudy substance of acetic acid known as “the mother”, and holds all of the probiotic and enzymatic properties that aid in gut health.
Keep in mind that most apple cider vinegar filters out the mother, and does not contain these gut-healing properties. If the vinegar is clear like apple juice, it’s probably not raw. When using ACV for gut health, make sure that you purchase the raw kind, like Bragg’s brand.
10 Ways Apple Cider Vinegar Supports Gut Health
1. Beats Bloat
If you regularly combat belly bloat, apple cider vinegar can relieve some of that discomfort. That’s because ACV helps boost stomach acid which can be beneficial for those who don’t make enough for proper digestion. Having enough stomach acid plays an important role in helping to break down food. (2) When your digestion runs smoothly, you’ll experience less bloating.
2. Supports Better Digestion
Indigestion is often caused by low stomach acid – a syndrome known as hypochlorhydria. When you add apple cider vinegar to your diet, you’re replenishing some of that missing acid to relieve stomach pain, gas, and nausea. (3) A word of caution: If you suffer from acid reflux caused by excess stomach acid, then raw apple cider vinegar may make symptoms worse. That being said, don’t start chugging back shots of apple cider vinegar without speaking with your healthcare provider first.
3. Fights Fungus and Bacteria
Raw apple cider vinegar holds some impressive benefits against fungal and bacterial infections, which can also help clear up certain gut invaders. (4) One study found that raw apple cider vinegar showed promising antimicrobial effects against E. coli, S aureus, and Candida albicans. (5)
4. Boosts Nutrient Absorption
Apple cider vinegar may play an important role in boosting nutrient absorption, especially in the absorption of calcium. An animal study found that dietary vinegar boosted intestinal calcium absorption due to the acetic acid content. (6) Add a drizzle of raw apple cider vinegar to calcium-rich foods like broccoli or salads with sliced almonds to improve your body’s ability to absorb those nutrients.
5. Combats Yeast Infections
If you suffer from frequent yeast infections or candida overgrowth, apple cider vinegar could be a lifesaver. Raw ACV holds some impressive antimicrobial and antifungal health benefits and can kill the infection at its source. (7)
6. Aids in Detox
Raw apple cider vinegar helps reduce body fat, naturally removing toxins built up in those fat cells. (8) Try drinking apple cider vinegar mixed with water and honey to help flush out those toxins while giving your gut a boost.
7. Alkalinizes Your Body
Despite the fact that raw apple cider vinegar is considered acidic, it has an alkalizing effect on the body due to the presence of acetic acid bacteria. When you take apple cider vinegar, it can help balance the pH of your body and digestive system. Maintaining an alkaline environment in your body helps improve metabolism, boosts your immunologic response, and supports repair functions in the body, like healing the intestinal wall. (9)
8. Supports a Healthy Weight
Maintaining a healthy weight is an important part of supporting overall health, like reducing the likelihood of acid reflux. (10) Studies show that the acetic acid found in raw apple cider vinegar helps to reduce both body weight and triglyceride levels. (11) Try taking a little ACV each day to support a healthy weight and digestive health.
9. Reduces Stomach Cramping and Inflammation
Raw apple cider vinegar contains pectin, a fiber that aids digestion by reducing stomach cramping, and inflammation. One study found that pectin was able to treat diarrhea in patients with irritable bowel syndrome by reducing systemic inflammation. (12)
10. Relieves Constipation
If you suffer from frequent constipation, raw apple cider vinegar may be able to keep things moving. Restoring healthy gut bacteria is a key part of supporting bowel regularity as a disturbance in gut bacteria may be linked to poor bowel habits. (13) Try adding raw apple cider vinegar to your diet to help boost the beneficial bacteria in your gut to help keep you regular.
Five Ways to Use Apple Cider Vinegar
There are lots of ways you can include raw apple cider vinegar into your diet to show your gut some love. Here are five ideas to get you started.
1. Make an Elixir
Take a shot of this Turmeric Elixir with Apple Cider Vinegar made with turmeric and raw honey every day to fight inflammation and support digestive health.
2. Create Your Own Gummies
Get creative and make your own DIY Apple Cider Vinegar Gummies to keep your gut and immune system strong. They’re especially great for cold and flu season.
3. Blend It Up in a Smoothie
Sneak in a tablespoon of ACV into your favorite smoothie. Just make sure to not add too much, as ACV has a very tangy flavor.
4. Drizzle Over Side Dishes
Raw apple cider vinegar adds a refreshing and zesty taste to quick veggie dishes like roasted asparagus, cabbage slaw, or cucumber salads!
5. Whisk up a Salad Dressing
Whisk ¼ cup avocado oil, with two tablespoons of raw ACV, one clove of mashed garlic, and one tablespoon of freshly chopped oregano for a gut-boosting dressing to drizzle over any salad or side.
The Bottom Line
Maintaining a healthy digestive system is key to feeling your best and your overall health. If you suffer from indigestion, IBS, or other gut issues, try adding a little raw apple cider vinegar to your diet regularly to boost your gut!