Penelope Thompson, M.H.

The wind blows and the leaves fall leading us to the season of gathering what is left in the garden patch and picking fresh apples. Dr. John R. Christopher, on many occasions, was known to call the apple “the king of fruits.” He suggested drinking fresh apple juice in his many cleansing routines, for its ability to purify the blood. The apple also produces an elixir known as apple cider vinegar (ACV).
ACV is created by bacteria and yeasts. The apples are crushed and exposed first to yeasts and later to bacteria. The yeast ferments the sugars in the fruit to create alcohol. Then specific bacteria break down the alcohol to form acetic acid, the main component of ACV.  ACV is a concentration of acids, flavonoids, polyphenols, pectin, enzymes, minerals and amino acids that form during natural fermentation.
ACV has a long history throughout the world, and it continues today in our modern cultures as well.
Benefits of ACV include:

  • Helps dissolve inorganic calcium deposits and helps increase calcium assimilation.
  • Helps correct hydrochloric acid deficiency in the stomach, which is needed for proper digestion.
  • Cleanses and tones the skin and is good as a regular hair rinse. It can also be a quick relief from an infestation of head lice.
  • Rich in enzymes, potassium sodium, calcium and magnesium.
  • Helps to break up and reduce mucous in the body.
  • Used as an aid to revitalize and heal the body as an alkalizing drink with 1 tablespoon of both ACV and honey in a glass of warm water (drink 3 times a day).  This is also a good remedy for a sore throat.
  • Can substitute for salt and elevate the flavor of your food.  It’s a nice base to a simple salad dressing added to olive oil and any tasty herbs.
  • Solvent for infusing and preserving herbal medicines, and food (pickling) for storage.
  • Can provide relief for skin rashes, itch and sunburn.

ACV is a wonderful gift to give someone you care about. It is produced by many different companies.  Although, you may have seen ACV in the grocery store, it may not be the RAW, fermented ACV that maintains its medicinal qualities.
Here’s what to look for when buying ACV:

  • Unfiltered – Is rich in important polyphenol antioxidants.
  • Unpasteurized RAW - Unpasteurized ACV contains the “mother” of the vinegar which occurs naturally as strand-like enzymes of connected protein molecules. Raw is still a natural “living food”.
  • Organic - Choosing ACV made with organic apples minimizes your exposure to poisonous pesticides and herbicides.

Penelope Thompson is a recent Master Herbalist graduate from The School of Natural Healing.