If you happened to have a telescope you could look through and see me right now, you’d watch me drinking apple cider vinegar mixed with water right out of the bottle about the size of a medium-sized soda bottle.
It’s my latest attempt to trick myself into drinking it a few times of day. When I get thirsty, I grab it from the fridge. Everyone else has their beverages in there, so why shouldn’t I? But why apple cider vinegar, you may be wondering.
Somehow, I lost the book I used to own about all the different healing properties of apple cider vinegar. But I remember it because I used to refer to it whenever I had an issue, and more often than not, it was addressed in that old folk medicine book. I started drinking it again recently a couple of weeks ago when I declared war against the mucus monster.
It’s that time of year again when I’m hyper-aware of the potential to become vulnerable to colds and other germs as my body adjusts to the change in temperature and my immune system is compromised by the shift.
The mucus monster is my nemesis, however, I’m here to tell you and happy to report that waking up with a sore throat in the morning doesn’t constitute a crisis if you know what to do about it. Post-nasal drip is a chronic problem of mine that worsens every fall. But I have avoided having it turn into a full-blown cold or flu thanks to the wonders of raw honey and apple cider vinegar.
The assault of mucus to my sinuses and throat means only a temporary glitch in my day when I attack it a few different ways.
Use a nasal rinse (saline solution) at least three times a day to keep cleansing my nasal passages from the mucus that drips like faucet into my throat. The rinse makes it less likely that any bacteria will grow and make a mess out of my throat, then turn into bronchitis, which used to happen to me every year like clockwork.
Drink the apple cider vinegar remedy several times throughout the day for whatever does drip into my throat and stay there long enough to cause problems.
Here’s what you do:
Put one tablespoon of raw apple cider vinegar in a big glass of water, along with one tablespoon of raw honey. Stir it and drink. It may be tough, but it does a job on post-nasal itching, dripping and overall annoying activity. Think of it as medicinal soda.
Eat warm, spicy food. Spices like chili powder, cumin, turmeric, cayenne pepper, and all kinds of fresh hot peppers are not friends of the mucus monster. In fact, they create a very hostile environment.
Apple cider vinegar is no joke. It is a home remedy to treat flu, burn warts, burn fat, and regulate blood sugar levels for diabetics, among other things.
WebMD quotes Carol Johnston, PhD, director of Arizona State University’s nutrition program, about her 10-year study on apple cider vinegar. She believes its effects on blood sugar are similar to certain medications.
“Apple cider vinegar’s anti-glycemic effect is very well documented,” Johnston says, and explains that it blocks a portion of the digestion of starch. “It doesn’t block the starch 100%, but it definitely prevents at least some of that starch from being digested and raising your blood sugar.”
In other words, if you drink apple cider vinegar and water with a starchy meal, then the starches you don't digest will feed the good bacteria in your gut, according to Johnston, who also claims unfiltered vinegar is best. Apparently, it’s the cloudy kind with “blobs” in the bottle.
In case you’re wondering, the blob, called “the mother,” is packed with probiotics as well as other beneficial bacteria, which means it can support the immune system’s functionality. It also makes your bowels move more regularly. Imagine that!
But of course, drinking it straight is a very bad idea because it’s terribly acidic and could do a job on your esophagus, not to mention the enamel on your teeth.
Raw honey is an anti-viral, antibacterial, anti-microbial, anti-fungal and antioxidant known to treat seasonal allergies if you use local honey, which is said to contain small amounts of the pollens you may be allergic to.
Certain varieties of honey are also indicated for specific remedies, such as Manuka honey, which is a strong anti-bacterial, can treat colds, acne, sore throats, indigestion and stomach ulcers, to name a few.
To cleanse your liver, promote intestinal health and reduce inflammation in the respiratory tract, use acacia honey. Buckwheat honey, which is said to be scarce in the U.S., is a strong antioxidant. Take eucalyptus honey for colds and headaches.
In Ayurvedic remedies, neem honey is used to treat throat infections, allergies, high blood pressure and diabetes, as well as skin conditions. But all honey is good for calming the nervous system, easing anxiety and depression, and relieving pain.
Raw honey is preferred because once the honey is heated and pasteurized; the nutrients are destroyed, and reduce the honey to a simple, unhealthy sweetener that is as undesirable as white, refined sugar.