Homemade Apple Cider Vinegar Gummies | Vegan, Immune Boosting, Gut Friendly
Apple cider vinegar isn’t the most pleasant of supplements to consume, yet it’s touted as a major health food. So how are we supposed to reap the benefits without cringing every time we take a swig? Make apple cider vinegar gummies of course!
Apple cider vinegar gummies are not only easy to make, but they’re delicious, too. Naturally sweetened with fruit juice and maple syrup, these gummies will make anyone (even your picky child) enjoy them without dreading the apple cider vinegar (ACV) aftertaste.
A key ingredient of this gummy recipe is agar agar – a seaweed product (which doesn’t taste like seaweed, surprisingly) that gelatinizes without having to use real animal gelatin (yes, that means this is a plant-based, vegan friendly gummy!). Agar agar, combined with the healing potential of ACV makes this gummy a serious super treat!
The Health Benefits of Agar Agar
Agar agar is a gel-like substance that is derived from red algae, often used as a thickening agent for desserts, soups, sauces, and candies like gummies! It is a popular gelatin alternative, because it is plant-based and flavorless.
Being an algae, agar is loaded with nutritional benefits. It is high in fiber, manganese, magnesium, folate, calcium and iron. With that being said, it provides the following benefits.
High in fibre, agar agar acts as a natural laxative, adding bulk to the stool and pushing things through. By eating foods high in fibre, you reduce your chances of getting colon cancer, and also ensure you don’t get stuck dealing with things like constipation. Upping your fibre intake has also been associated with protection from gastrointestinal disorders, hemorrhoids, intestinal ulcers and even acid reflux (1).
Satiety and Weight Loss
High fibre foods also help keep your waistline in check. By moving slowly through the digestive tract, fibre promotes satiety and reduces appetite. One study found that agar agar was able to slow gastric emptying, which helps keep you feeling fuller for longer (2). Another study found significant weight reductions in obese individuals who consumed agar agar for 12 weeks compared to a control group (3).
Agar agar contains nutrients like calcium, manganese and magnesium, which are critical for proper bone health. Calcium helps provide strength to the tissue in your bones and teeth, while manganese helps assist in bone formation (4, 5). Magnesium is also essential for bone health. Without magnesium, calcium can’t assist in proper bone maintenance and formation. Magnesium keeps calcium dissolved in the blood. Too much calcium along with too little magnesium can cause arthritis, kidney stones, osteoporosis and calcification of the arteries (6).
Agar agar is also high in iron – a whopping 33% of the total iron you need in a day (for just one ounce!). Iron helps promote the production of healthy red blood cells and reduce the risk of anemia. This recipe is great, too, because the iron is paired with fruit juice that is super high in vitamin C (so that it is absorbed better).
The Health Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is another major health supplement that I use quite often in my kitchen. Apple cider vinegar is essentially made from apple cider that has undergone fermentation to form health-promoting probiotics and enzymes.
Just two tablespoons of ACV provide plenty of health-boosting benefits, such as:
Blood Sugar Regulation
One of the most well-studied benefits of ACV is its ability to regular blood sugar levels. One study found that vinegar consumption after eating white bread reduced blood sugar levels by over 31 percent (7). ACV has also been found to increase insulin sensitivity by up to 34 percent in those with type 2 diabetes or insulin resistance (8). This is a good thing as better insulin sensitivity means the body will be more effective at regulating blood sugar levels.
If you haven’t heard about ACV and weight loss, then you’ll be pleasantly surprised by this health benefit. One study found that consuming just two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar every day for 12 weeks resulted in nearly 4 pounds of weight loss with no other diet or lifestyle modifications (9). The reason? It might have something to do with satiety, according to one study that showed drinking ACV actually decreased total caloric intake by 275 calories over the course of a day (10). Combining apple cider vinegar with a proper diet and exercise routine would be sure to provide excellent results in someone looking to shed a few extra pounds!
Reduces Blood Pressure
Animal studies looking at apple cider vinegar and blood pressure have found that acetic acid (the main component in vinegar) helps reduce levels of blood pressure (11). Other studies have found that vinegar effectively blocks the actions of specific enzymes that raise blood pressure under normal circumstances (12). Keeping blood pressure lower helps reduce your risk of developing heart disease later in life. When your blood pressure is too high, the heart has to work harder, causing the heart muscle to weaken over time.
Relieves Acid Reflux
Acid reflux often happens as a result of not having enough acid in your stomach. By consuming apple cider vinegar, you are integrating more acid into the digestive tract to prevent things like heartburn, belching and nausea.
Having too high cholesterol wreaks havoc on the arteries. It causes them to narrow and harden, and puts major strain on your heart. A study done on rats found that supplementing with apple cider vinegar helped reduce bad LDL cholesterol while increasing beneficial HDL cholesterol (13).
Apple cider vinegar has also been reported to help with:
– Cancer prevention
– Relieving allergy symptoms
– Improving lymphatic function
– Reducing inflammation
Recipe: Apple Cider Vinegar Gummies
Get your daily dose of ACV in these bite-sized apple cider vinegar gummies!
– 1.5 cups 100% organic fruit juice of choice
– 1/2 cup unpasteurized apple cider vinegar
– 2 tbsp. agar powder
– 1-2 tbsp. maple syrup
1. Combine the fruit juice and apple cider vinegar in a large saucepan (no heat) and stir well. Sprinkle the agar powder over the liquid and whisk until completely dissolved.
2. Switch on the heat to medium-low so that the mixture comes to a simmer. Whisk again, on and off, for 5 minutes, or until the consistency is thickened and syrup-like (but not quite as thick as honey). Whisk occasionally while the mixture is simmering so that nothing overcooks on the bottom of sides of the saucepan.
3. Once the mixture is done, you can add some maple syrup sweetener if desired. Stir in until dissolved.
4. Fill whatever moulds you are using (ice cube trays work here – silicon is best!), and let chill in a refrigerator for at least one hour until serving. Keep the snacks stored in a fridge until ready to eat.