Apple cider vinegar is made from the fermentation of apple cider. Unlike other types of vinegar, apple cider vinegar is often sold unfiltered and unpasteurized with a brown, cloudy sediment called the “mother” settled at the bottom of the bottle. This sediment consists mainly of acetic acid-producing bacteria.
Apple cider vinegar has been used since ancient times as a health tonic and as treatment for a variety of ailments. When ingested, apple cider vinegar helps in properly acidifying the stomach; this in turn stimulates bile secretion from the gallbladder and the release of digestive enzymes from the pancreas, processes which are both important for the breakdown of food and proper absorption of nutrients.
Most importantly, research in people with type 2 diabetes has shown that consumption of apple cider vinegar helps reduce the blood sugar spikes after eating. Other beneficial health claims attributed to the ingestion of apple cider vinegar include weight loss, lowering of blood cholesterol and blood pressure, and as treatment against certain kinds of cancers. Nonetheless, research in these areas is still lacking or is inconclusive.