Apple Cider Vinegar As An Internal & External Health Tonic

We all know that An Apple A Day Keeps The Doctor Away, right? Well, here's another one you might not be aware of: A shot of Apple Cider Vinegar a day or even a shot before each meal is known to be one of the best cleanses for your body as well as one of the best health boosting habits! 

I have previous shared how I use this natural goodness as a magical remedy for cleaning my yoga mat or rinsing my veggies. Here I'm going to share with you which ACV you should use as a natural supplement to your diet in order to improve and heal your health, boost your energy and potentially start shining on the inside as well as the outside.

It is very important that you drink the right kind of ACV in order to obtain any of the desired health benefits. The right kind is the real kind: Organic, Raw, Unfiltered ACV which contains the "mother" of vinegar. You can find many ACV on the shelves with different labels and fancy adjectives but not to worry you can easily recognize the right one as the liquid is not transparent but kind of foggy and brown'ish. My good friend and food expert Lou (known in Shanghai as Loueatsmore) has always recommended me to use BRAGG's Apple Cider Vinegar and I recently went to the amazing Sprout Lifestyle in Surpass Course 570 Yongjia lu to pick up a bottle (approx. RMB 70). 

The list of benefits provided by this drink is long and to mention the most important (in my opinion) ACV is known to: 

  • Improve digestion (why I like it before meals)
  • Prevent constipation (why I like it in the early mornings before breakfast)
  • Strengthen your immune system (why I like it hot in the winter)
  • Get rid of bad breath (which you can almost feel when you sip on it)
  • Detoxify your system (why I really like it as a daily detox after a toxic weekend)
  • Be anti-bacterial and anti-funcal (why I love it as a supplement when I live in dirty Shanghai)

If you want to read more about the research behind and ACV's additional benefits just hit google and use your common sense to find valid sources (which might not be personal blogs like this written by an Apple Cider Vinegar FAN). Or just head down to Sprout Lifestyle, grab a bottle and try for yourself. I was convinced about this historic elixir after the first sip!

Directions

Mix 1 tablespoon of ACV in a cup of hot water and sip on it. I love the flavor but if you don't try to add some honey.  

Aceto di Mele was around RMB 20 in O'le and I use it for cleaning. The bottle in the middle  was a bit more due to an "organic" label but as the ACV liquid is see-through it's clearly not raw and unfiltered. I currently use this for cleaning fruits & veggies but I would use the cheaper one for this as well. The BRAGG's to the right is famous for being the "real" Apple Cider Vinegar containing the "mother" of vinegar and this is the one I drink. 

Some weeks I use APV as a daily detox and drink it as the first thing in the morning. I swear I can feel a difference. I like it so much that I sometimes have it later in the day when I feel like something to sip on - don't overdo it though.  

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High Protein Hummus

With Shanghai's fast paced life and metropol'ish lifestyle there is nothing better than getting together with good friends at someone's home. No crowds, no queues, no hazzle, no noise. 

To night I'm meeting some of my favorite Shanghai girls to catch-up and discuss the life as being Young Professionals in Shanghai (aaaand probably a few other things as well).

Being a vegetarian is such a good "excuse" for bringing some of my favorite food to dinners: Salad & Hummus Dip!

To night's Hummus version is a Protein Rich Hummus - oh so yummy, oh so filling & oh so healthy. 

Ingredients

1 can of chickpeas ready-to-eat (approx. 250 g drained weight)

1/2 can of lentils ready-to-eat (approx. 150 g drained weight)

2 cloves of garlic

15 almonds slightly roasted on a dry pan

1/2 cup of olive oil

1/2 cup of water

A dash of fresh lemon

A dash of tabasco or some fresh chili

Seasoning

Directions

Mix in a blender or food-processor but don't add all liquids at once. Add more if necessary. You can decide the olive oil/water proportion yourself. Some prefer only oil.  

Blend & enjoy as a meat-replacement in a salad or as a sandwich spread  

 

Apple Cider Vinegar Solution for Cleaner, Healthier & Safer Greens

Before I moved to China I rarely gave a lot of thoughts to food safety. In Denmark I would choose organic if the price and availability were reasonable and I would buy local whenever possible. I love the thought of eating Danish fruits & veggies.

Still, I would classify my attitude towards organic, local and safer products as "comfortable". Thus if it were convenient for me I would get it, if not I would choose imported or cheaper products. 

When it comes to cleaning my fruits & veggies the story is the same. Yes, I would always wash my apple and soak my baby spinach. But rinse, scrub or use anything else but water to clean it have never crossed my mind. 

Then China happened.

Being a vegetarian, a salad-lover and a smoothie-addict I consume a looooot of fruits & veggies every day. So when I discovered the local Chinese Veggie Markets with good prices and good selections (as oppose to the outrageous priced international supermarkets) I was a very happy rabbit: Buying local & saving money. Every weekend my boyfriend and I would do a mission to the market and get bags and bags of greens, yellows, reds, pinks and more greens for the forthcoming week. We did sometimes talk about the safety and cleanness of everything but we are not too fuzz about things in general. I mean we all eat out in Shanghai so often and believing that any eatery here can use anything but the cheapest to stay competitive would be a naive belief (in my opinion). Still I often found myself with a wondering taste in my mouth thinking about how many pesticides and how much hidden dirt from Chinese soil I had just consumed. 

Then I heard about Apple Cider Vinegar Solution as a natural remedy to properly clean all kinds of fruits and veggies (I have previously used it as a natural and efficient way to clean my yoga mat and other gym tools which you can read about here).

I made a google search and lots of articles and food blogs popped up with great proof that there is something to this natural miracle solution. Tiffany from "Don't waste the Crumbs" have a great post showing actual pictures of the dirt-left-overs from Strawberries soaked in ACV solution - check it here - it speaks for itself. 

Commiting to Apple Cider Vinegar Solution

My philosophy is that it's very possible to live healthy in Shanghai. It just demands a few things like planning, research & commitment. So after realizing that there is a way to feel better about buying and consuming local here in Shanghai I decided to commit to following this way and soak all my fruits & greens in Apple Cider Vinegar Solution.  

  • Apple Cider Vinegar Solution: Apple Cider Vinegar can be bought in most International Supermarkets here and I've both seen and used non-organic which cost around RMB 20 - 30/bottle. Organic is around RMB 70. I use approximately 1/10 Apple Cider Vinegar and 9/10 water mixed in a big bowl. I soak fruits and veggies for 10 minutes in the solution (I find that stirring is effective) and dry them in a clean kitchen towel.    
  • Fruits: Most of the time I will wash fruits as soon as I bring them home so that when I'm craving an apple it will be ready to eat. I will clean watermelon, grape fruits & avocados in the solution even though I don't eat the peel or the shell. Why? Because if you think about it these fruits' outer layer will be all over your hands and chopping board when you are preparing them.
  • Veggies: I normally clean my veggies when I'm preparing a salad or something else where I plan to use them - I find it too difficult to dry properly when I'm not using them straight away and you don't want to put cleaned fruits or veggies back in the refrigerator before they are dry.      

But, what about on the inside?

The next question is what about these fruits and veggies on the inside and all the cra* from the polluted Chinese soil they might have absorbed and grown from? That is a really good question and I can't say I'm not concerned. But, I am a realist not an idealist and this might be why I as a healthy lifestyle addict can still live in this place without being too frustrated or paranoid. 

I myself is currently looking into safer options than the Local Veggie Markets. I'm doing research and talking to people from the healthy & "safer food scene" in Shanghai in order to figure out if other options like buying through online suppliers (i) is affordable/reasonable (ii) has proof that it's actually safer and healthier. The polluted soil is the same I would say but of course if we can avoid additional chemicals and pesticides at least that is one step in the right directions, don't you think so?

Subscribe and I will make sure to keep you updated with whatever I come across during my search: 

I would love to hear from anyone with opinions, inside information or healthy & safe tips! Let's help each other with Healthier Habits! 

    

The Best of Shanghai Awards - Healthy Choices

Last month the 6th Best Of Shanghai Awards took place in order to celebrate the city's best offerings. In case you like me are wondering about the best Healthy Choices in our city I'll share them with you here.

Best Yoga Studio: Pure Yoga 

Best Gym Chain: MOB Fitness Club

Best Gym: Rebook CrossFit MeWellness

Best Travel Company: Ctrip

I've been around MOB Fitness Club which is such a cool and modern fitness club (with pools) and I can't wait to try Pure Yoga in IAPM Mall to see if it's really that good or too modern for me (I appreciate Body & Soul Yoga's spiritual style and small classes - this morning we were only two students so it's full-on and full-value-for-money practice). 

I would have appreciated some more Healthy Awards on the list - like Best Healthy Selection Cafe, Best Healthy Selection Supermarket and Best Healthy Blog... Guess I'll have to get into contact with Best Of Shanghai and work on that for next year's award show! 

What's your favorite healthy choice in Shanghai in terms of gym, cafe or personal habit? I'm working on my Top 5 Healthy Cafe Choice in Shanghai so if you wanna share your favorite spot let me know which & why!

Subscribe to Shanghaihabits for more healthy updates from China's New York

A Free Week of Yoga

One of the great things about living in a metropolis like Shanghai is the great offers one can enjoy. Yoga, fitness and healthclubs are super expenny to join here but there is always offers and free trials to find!

One Week of Free Yoga

The Begirl community platform offers one week of free yoga classes! So if you have been thinking about trying out yoga or joining a yogacenter in Shanghai this is a great change to get more of a feel for yoga than you are able to do in just one trial class which is what most places offer (many places in Shanghai even make you pay for a trial and then refund it if and when you sign up).

High five Begirl! I am definitely trying your Free Yoga Week. Keen to join me? Send an email to info@begirl.com or add their wechat begirl2014.

Check out their Facebook for more info 


The Color Run in Shanghai - Join the Happiest 5k on the Planet

The famous and super-cool Color Run is coming to Shanghai in September - don't forget to sign up and join the happiest 5k on the Planet! 

The Color Run™, also known as the Happiest 5k on the Planet, is a unique paint race that celebrates healthiness, happiness, individuality, and giving back to the community

This is such a good opportunity to start running after a hot & lazy summer and 5k is very doable I think. If you need some inspiration for where to run in Shanghai to get ready you can check out my Favorite Running Routes in Shanghai.

Share with your friends so we can have some fun and promote more Health & Happiness in Shanghai

Running Route: Along Suzhou Creek

Shanghai felt so refreshing this weekend. It was like the light rain both cleaned and cooled down the streets. Saturday I  jumped on my bike (and remembered to put on my new biking helmet - better safe than sorry in these crazy streets) and headed to Suzhou Creek north of Jing an to check out the running. I loved it! Such a great little "escape" from the crowded streets and such a  great run by the water.

I'll share my route with you so you can get out there and attack the streets of Shanghai in your own running shoes (:

Suzhou Creek Route

On a large part of the Suzhou creek path it is not actually possible to run by the water. This is one reason why I like to take my bike there and also because I'm so tired of running in the busy streets to get there. I bike to the creek by heading north on Shaanxi Lu, I turn right at Anyuan Lu so I pass the Jade Buddha Tempel just before I reach the creek. I bike a long it for a few kilometers and when I reach the Jiuzi Park area I lock my bike and helmet to a bench and run from there. The Park area is quite easy to recognize as it looks very new with wooden paths, benches and a running track.

From here you can run at the water on both sides of the creek - different bridges allow you to cross. You can actually run all the way to the Bund though not with a water view the whole way. 

Check the route (the Black Line) on the above map and click here to find an interactive google map where you can see more details and make your own route. 

Have fun out there and don't forget to Share, Subscribe & Shine!