Apple Cider Vinegar–a Traditional Chinese Medicine…

“Vinegar is warming. It creates a temporary warming circulation of energy (qi) in the body, and removes stagnant blood. It can quickly alter emotional stagnation as well, especially in children— bad moods will usually disappear a few moments after taking or eating something with high quality unpasteurized vinegar.”

– Healing with Whole Foods: Asian Traditions and Modern Nutrition by Paul Pitchford


Apples are one of Creation’s best gifts–when you bite into a crisp, fresh apple life just seems better. And apples are the gift that keeps giving because the vinegar we glean from organic apples is quite the miraculous substance.


Apple cider vinegar is not a fly-by-night elixir of the day that the latest social media influencer is touting. Yes, those influencers love the stuff, but ACV has a long history of supporting health.


Apple cider vinegar lowers blood sugar, helps us lose body fat, increases feelings of satiety, freshens our skin (1 part organic ACV to 3 parts pure water), removes dangerous bacteria when used as a produce wash, makes the perfect base for pickling and marinades and it’s the apple cider vinegar that makes my Mama’s barbecue sauce have a nice zingy little bite before the dance between the cane sugar sweet and the cayenne pepper spice really takes over.  


Apple cider vinegar is a powerful food in the Traditional Chinese Medicine cupboard, too. It has been considered a healing tonic in the Chinese tradition for two millennia. Because apple cider vinegar is sour, it’s considered to be quite the boon for the liver. 


Liver qi stagnation is caused by an abundance of toxic stress and unhealthy habits like overwork or a diet that is processed and sugar-laden…Because of the nature of the world, most of us can present with liver qi stagnation at anytime, but most especially as Spring is at the seasonal doorway. 


Spring is the ideal time for spring cleaning our homes, but it’s also when we can especially benefit from a liver detox.  Springtime is all about growth, renewal and expansion–and by supporting our liver in spring, we’re helping our body rev up for greater health.


Because, in TCM, the liver is the deep seat of our emotions, when the liver is in a toxic and stagnant state, we’re more prone to emotional upset, irritability and foul moods. Vinegar, along with acupuncture, making wholesome eating a lifestyle and working to get to the deep source of your emotional upset, can be helpful in easing the liver back into a healthy state.


When looking for a good all-purpose apple cider vinegar, make sure it’s raw/unpasteurized, organic and contains “the mother.” ( Those cloudy ribbons at the bottom of the bottle that contain the essential super-charged enzymes and probiotics, that’s mother!)




By Deana Vassar, Awakenings Health, 2021