Tim Leeming. Exercise Nutritionist.
Apple cider vinegar must have quite the ego right now, as the good press and publications about this probiotic food continue to flow. We’ve shared a few ideas around apple cider vinegar (ACV) already. In this article, I go into a little more detail about the specific benefits it will give you as a runner.
Here’s why daily apple cider vinegar should be a priority for any runner:
Cramp prevention and muscular performance
Perhaps the most researched and evidenced benefit of ACV for runners is its capacity to prevent muscular and gastrointestinal cramps, as well as decrease cramping severity. ACV provides the gut with a healthy mix of electrolytes that are taken up into the bloodstream, bringing salt balance to the musculoskeletal system in the process. With less cramping and a more favourable internal environment, the muscles of your legs can perform and recover optimally and your tummy feel at ease.
Apple cider vinegar works its way through the gastrointestinal system, cleaning up toxins and unwanted by-products that cause feelings of fatigue and tiredness. With these toxins gone, and the added health-promoting effects of ACV becoming more apparent, you’ll feel it in your energy levels throughout the day and while you run.
Improved glucose control
ACV is being used in diabetic patients to stabilise blood glucose levels, particularly after eating when blood sugar tends to spike. Basically, the apple cider vinegar blunts the sugar spike, causing a slower and more sustained release of glucose into the blood. Not only is this a fantastic finding for diabetics, but runners will see huge benefit in this physiological response, as well. No one likes “hitting the wall”, “bonking” or “blowing a gasket”, so get stuck into the ACV to mitigate any chance of it happening!
It doesn’t stop there. This fermented fruit drink is known for decreasing systemic inflammation and therefore aches and pains in the joints, detoxifying the skin, easing gastric discomfort, balancing pH levels and improving satiety (feeling full) after eating.
Note: When purchasing apple cider vinegar, it is important to make sure that it is organic, unpasteurised, and with the 'mother’.
Tune into our Eat to Run Webinar on Wednesday 12 April if you’d like to learn more about the performance enhancing effects of real foods and how best to implement them!