Monday, December 12, 2011

Wholesome foods Pt 1: Apple Cider Vinegar

Substantially reducing the amount of sugar in my diet has given me more time and motivation to try new foods. Not to mention my tastebuds seem on high alert and things that may have tasted bland or bitter in the past, now taste KaBoom!

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Having less sugar does of course make me feel much healthier. But the foods that I am replacing sugar with, also feel much kinder to my body. They're foods that pop up a lot amongst naturopaths and those interested in more wholesome food choices. And these foods really do feel much more wholesome. Certainly, much better than the packaged up stuff we're being engulfed with on our TV's, in our newspapers and on larger than life billboards.  

Apple Cider Vinegar - although not new to my eating repertoire - is one such food. ACV is made by fermenting apple cider.  During the fermentation process the sugar is broken down by bacteria and yeast into alcohol and then into vinegar. Sounds delicious doesn't it? Well it's not. Not on it's own anyway....

The benefits of ACV are huge. Home Remedies Web lists the following as some of the positives of adding a little ACV to your diet: 
  • Reduce sinus infections and sore throats
  • Balance high cholesterol
  • Cure skin conditions such as acne
  • Protect against food poisoning
  • Fight allergies in both humans and animals
  • Prevent muscle fatigue after exercise
  • Strengthen the immune system
  • Increase stamina
  • Increase metabolism which promotes weight loss
  • Improve digestion and cure constipation
  • Alleviate symptoms of arthritis and gout
  • Prevents bladder stones and urinary tract infections
My father in law swigs a little ACV each day. How on earth, I'll never know. My husband and I try to gargle it with the onset of a sore throat. It starts off ok, but the after taste renders you with  tourette type spasms.

However, served over a garden salad the taste of ACV is somewhat sweet and refreshing (It's a bit like vanilla essence - oh so bad on it's own, but oh so tasty in a cake). I add a tablespoon or so to my lunch time salad each day and love it!

There's also a recipe on the bottle (I just use Cornwells at the moment, but there is a huge variety of organic brands available too) for a Ginger, Chilli and Cider Chicken which I'll give a whirl one night soon. 

With all the benefits above, it's worth experimenting with, wouldn't you say?

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