I love sharing information with clients and peers, but please don't listen to a word I say. Instead, if something resonates with you? Then happily check it out, first, to see if it's right for you.
A multi-purpose home remedy ingredient I purposely ignored due to my gut’s life-long inability to tolerate it, has turned out to be a remedy I potentially needed most: Vinegar. Specifically, apple cider vinegar or ACV. It is one of three main ingredients in a recipe I hope you will join me in trying. Alone, (but still diluted) ACV is already known to be a digestive helper, immune supporter, and weight loss tool, but combined with two other antimicrobial ingredients, it packs a powerful punch for arthritic relief, too.
I’m not going to pretend that I know how ACV works or why it works better than any other vinegar. Nor will I repeat what’s out there on the internet as to how it works because most of the explanations are false assumptions, not verified research. On the flip side, the existing research suggests that it is the acetic acid that matters, and therefore any vinegar will do, but I beg to differ; for starters, compare vinegars as rinse agents for hair, and there will be a notable difference. However, I don't claim to know what the root difference is, only that it exists.
What I know is that my body has always been highly acidic to the point of eating away metals and turning my white clothes yellow, remarkably fast. Ingesting vinegar, therefore, felt like pouring acid on an already salted open wound, which is why I could never understand why people liked pickled vegetables!
But, when it finally dawned on me that the underlying source of my original fibromyalgia pain was actually arthritis (and then science conveniently verified that,) and when I looked back on my life and realized that the running and dancing limitations were also a result of what could only be described as early-onset arthritis, I made a point of looking for arthritis related solutions for both my clients and myself. It is rather surprising how many of my clients' tight muscles are due to undiagnosed arthritis and calcific tendonitis.
Unfortunately, there are few solutions for getting at the root of arthritis and correcting it. Yes, there is a way to find out what’s in your diet that is causing the chronic inflammation, but I just don’t want to go through yet another dietary analysis. I already know that my digestive system balks at the majority of the plant world. Suffice to say that reducing certain grains, starches, and sugars (and pesticides) has had the most benefit. There was also a study about how foods of the nightshade family contribute to joint pain, but I already don’t tolerate nightshades well, so I rarely eat them. Skipping past a myriad of articles read, researched, and experimented with, I realized, yet again, that pharmaceuticals were not an option for me, so I cranked up my stubborn nature and put it to good use: I became obsessed with finding a natural arthritis remedy that worked from the inside out.
Then I nearly passed on by an internet conversation thread about arthritis and ACV, except they weren’t talking about just swallowing two tablespoons of the stuff (which is dangerous - please see note at bottom,) they were talking about mixing it with baking soda and raw honey and diluting it all in water, and many people were trying it, with success. My Spidey Sense kicked in. This, I had to try.
Besides, I had already noticed that many of my gourmet dinner recipes contained various vinegars, usually red wine, white wine, and champagne, but others, too. I would substitute lemon or lime juice if I could. But when they were mixing it with honey, I would use the vinegar, but half the recommended amount. I would eat and be fine. Over time, I became less fearful of vinegar’s affect on me as long as it was blended with something that seemed to tame it, like honey. That’s why I decided to try the ACV drink for arthritis - it mediates the painful acid, especially with the added baking soda. And if you ever wondered what benefits baking soda could have, look at how dependent hospitals are on the stuff: Baking Soda as Medicine.
The first time I tried the ACV drink, I was also motivated by an untimely dinner bloat, but within minutes of taking the drink, post dining, the food moved and my distress eased. Hm. Maybe all that internet chatter about ACV as home remedy for whatever ails you, has merit.
Knowing full well that the most important digestive functions occur while we are asleep, I tend to save my digestive supplements like probiotics, for bedtime. So, I decided the next night to ingest the ACV drink at bed time, too. The next day, I felt better. Coincidence? I don’t think so. I’m pretty self-aware, have a highly sensitive body, and am cognizant of the importance of objectivity in research, so it makes sense to use myself for various lab-like experiments, and I do. I’ve been trying many different things for my arthritis, and none of them made a difference worth noting. The ACV mixture, did.
Update: Almost two years later, this daily ACV drink recipe continues to benefit and I will likely be taking it for life. I have also noted that in time, my system "normalized" and now I don't need as much baking soda or honey as before. In fact, I can add a little vinegar to any glass of water and be fine with it. Normalization is a good thing to know. It means that it doesn't matter if you are out of balance in one direction or the other, with the right tweaking of a natural remedy like ACV, the body will begin to balance itself.
As with all medicines, food, natural, or otherwise, please keep moderation in mind:
ACV Recipe For Arthritis - And Other Ailments
In a 16-ounce glass, mix:
Note 1: Drinking immediately before a meal is recommended by many people, including vinegar expert Carol Johnston from Arizona State University, for helping to control blood sugar spikes that always occur upon eating (although does not occur with fats or water.) Avoid drinking immediately after your meal due to my observation (with 2 TBLSP) that this may speed up digestion, too much. You want your food to take its time digesting for that's how the body gets all its nutrients out of the food before you pass it out the colon. If you are bloated, go ahead, but better to not eat that which bloats you.
Note 2: Everyone’s digestion is unique, so adjust ingredients to suit your taste, trusting your “gut” to lead you in the right direction. Don’t trust your tongue; it often lies. (I sometimes think the tongue and the ego are in bed together, haha.)
Note 3: I have purposely avoided discussion of the hundreds of different kinds of arthritis, most of which are named by location, anyway, plus multiple names for the same thing. For the purposes of this blog, please just think of my use of the word arthritis as “the bones are squawking," because I promise you - they are. And I am listening.
Originally posted 4/26/2016. Date at top is latest update.
Solutions to everyday stress involve identifying where we are emotionally unhappy and then taking action to correct or curb the circumstances involved, and that means finding out what’s at the root of a given problem, before seeking solutions. I love this kind of problem-solving and happily share for those seeking similar unique yet ubiquitous solutions. Consequently, the topics here may vary within health, lifestyle, and work/business.
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