This Apple Cider Vinegar Metabolism Booster is a simple morning routine that will help you feel good all day long. Read on to learn about the benefits of apple cider vinegar, or jump straight to the recipe HERE.
Happy 2017, y’all!
It’s January 1st and I am feeling so ambitious and pumped for the year ahead. Which is basically the opposite of how I normally feel at the beginning of January. (Lazy, lazy, so incredibly lazy.)
Usually I find myself in a rut after the holidays, as if all the heavy holiday eating is literally weighing me down and keeping me from doing anything. The short, frigid days don’t help my mood either, and the last thing I want to think about is cooking big fancy meals. So I wind up snacking a lot, and promising myself to eat more vegetables just as soon as it warms up a little. Yes, I am no stranger to the “I’m totally going to eat healthy this year” resolution, but most years I come up with a ton of excuses and just… don’t.
NOT THIS YEAR.
This time, I am kicking off the new year with 31 Days Of Healthy Recipes here on the blog. That’s a new recipe every single day of January. Because I’m a crazy person, but also because I know you guys are wanting light, healthy, easy to prepare meals after the holidays… and so do I! Let’s rock our New Year’s Resolutions together, kay?
We’re talking simple, good-for-you food that also tastes amazing. If your goal for this month is anything like mine (to eat healthier and reset after the holidays) then stick around. I’ll also be sharing new posts daily on social media, or weekly on my mailing list. You can find links for those in the sidebar if you’d like to follow along.
Most of the recipes coming to you this month are going to be gluten free, many will be vegan (or have a vegan option), and all of them will be simple, inexpensive, and delicious.
Okay, except maybe this one.
Ha! This one isn’t exactly the best tasting thing I’ve made for you guys (although, if you like the taste of vinegar — I do! — then it isn’t so bad). Drinking vinegar is one of those things that isn’t so much about flavor as it is about helping you feel amazing all day long. I’d say that’s a pretty solid trade off, wouldn’t you?
I decided this apple cider vinegar metabolism booster would be the perfect way to kick off these 31 Days Of Healthy Recipes, because… hello, who doesn’t need a boost for their metabolism?
Taking a swig of this stuff every morning is an easy habit for feeling better, and I plan on drinking it daily during the month of January to help give my tummy a boost.
Apple Cider Vinegar helps your body in a ton of ways — some of which I can attest to first hand (I drink shots of this every morning around the holidays, and I can tell you from personal experience that it helps with my digestion) and some of which are backed up by research. Here are some of the benefits, as I understand them:
Why apple cider vinegar and not some other kind?
Apple cider vinegar is the easiest vinegar to find these days that’s sold RAW and UNFILTERED. Those are some important words, and even better if the bottle says it contains some of the “mother” — that is, the starter culture that fermented the vinegar. Because this kind of vinegar has not been pasteurized or filtered, it still contains all kinds of healthy microorganisms (aka probiotics). Think of it like kombucha, or other fermented foods, which are good for your gut health. I use Bragg’s cider vinegar because it’s the easiest to find, but if you have another brand of raw unfiltered vinegar you like, you can use that too.
So, besides a tiny bit of probiotics, why would you want to drink apple cider vinegar?
One of the biggest benefits of drinking a little vinegar every day is that it can help balance your body’s PH levels, and counter all the sugars we get in our normal diets. So, I’m not a doctor or a nutritionist, but here’s how I think of it: when we eat a bunch of sugars, our bodies react by producing more acids, effectively converting sugary foods into acidic ones in our gut. Some foods (including vinegar), do the opposite — they trigger the body to produce less acid, resulting in a more alkaline environment. So drinking something acidic actually helps make the body more alkaline — kind of ironic.
That might not seem like a big deal, but it turns out when our bodies are too acidic, they struggle to function as well as they should. Tissues can’t absorb nutrients as well, digestion is less effective, and we’re less likely to fight off diseases and illness. The body actually wants to maintain a slightly alkaline PH, but poor diet and stress can throw it off. A sip of vinegar every day helps gives it a boost in the right direction, and if your PH levels are already fine, is unlikely to do any harm because the body will naturally balance the alkalinity to a manageable level.
Cider vinegar might also have some other awesome qualities, though the research in these areas is still young — like reducing appetite (and helping you lose weight), lowing bad cholesterol and decreasing the risk of heart disease, and regulating blood sugar levels — just to name a few.
As mentioned earlier, I am not a doctor, scientist, or nutrition expert, so this information is based off my own research and personal experiences. I strongly suggest you read up on apple cider vinegar for yourself if you want to know more, and most importantly, give it a try and see how you feel.
This little concoction is not something I invented — you’ll find similar things all over the web — but this particular recipe comes from something my Mom drinks on the regular. She uses raw honey in hers (you could also use pure, grade B maple syrup, if you want to keep it vegan) and just a dash of cayenne pepper.
The cayenne is totally a to-taste kind of thing, and can be left out all together if you prefer. But having a little spice run through your system first thing in the morning can help get the blood flowing to all those important organs, and can help kick start your metabolism.
The honey (or maple syrup) have some of their own benefits, too, but mostly they make the drink taste good… which is a must, because it’s not a habit you’re going to keep up with if it tastes awful. However, if you’re looking to cut out the sweeteners, you can leave them out and instead dilute the mixture with water until the flavor is mild enough that you can drink it easily. The amount of water you need will vary depending on your tastes, so experiment to find what works best for you.
(I start by pouring just an ounce or so into a tall glass, then filling it up with water. Doing it this way is also a great reminder to stay hydrated — so important!)
And don’t forget to check back tomorrow — and the next day, and the next day — because I’ll be sharing new healthy recipes all month long!
- 2 oz. apple cider vinegar
- 8-10 oz. filtered water, or more to taste
- 3-4 TBSP honey (preferably raw) or pure grade B maple syrup (see recipe notes)
- pinch of cayenne powder, to taste (optional)
- Combine everything in a large jar or pitcher, adding honey or maple syrup to taste. The vinegar will be fairly strong, but it should be mild enough that you can easily swig a shot of it. If necessary, you can add more water or honey, to taste. (I totally splooshed in way more vinegar than I intended to in the photos, because I was distracted trying to get a good shot. If you find the vinegar flavor is too strong, just add more water as needed.)
- Optionally, add a pinch of cayenne pepper, to taste.
- Stir or shaking until the honey has dissolved. The jar can be stored in the fridge for up to a month or so. You can drink it cold, room temp, or warmed up (on brisk mornings when I can't stand the thought of drinking something cold, I warm mine up by placing my glass in a shallow pot of simmering water for a few minutes. I try not to heat it up too much (like microwaving it) because that would kill any microorganisms in the vinegar and honey).
- Drink about 1 oz. every day. You can drink a shot glass in the mornings, like I do, or you can dilute a little in a tall glass of water and sip on it throughout the day -- whichever you prefer.