Herbal Fire Tonic
Our interpretation of the traditional Fire Cider
Please note: Double-blind, randomized, placebo controlled, prospective clinical trials evaluating the efficacy and impact of natural botanical products is not something we often come across. They are out there and we find them as we continue our research. So, we encourage you to do the same! What we share below is based on what we’ve found in our discovery process, based on some science and some tradition and some mix of the two. So, please remember to embark on your own expiatory journey when learning how to practice any health and wellness pursuit.
This recipe comes from folklore dating back to Medieval Europe. Legend has it that four thieves used a concoction of vinegar with garlic, herbs and spices to protect them from the plague as they robbed the houses and graves of those who fell victim to the deadly disease.
The recipes for this ancient concoction are as varied as the stories about them. They have been passed down for hundreds of years under names such as Marseilles Vinegar and Four Thieves Vinegar. The most recent name, which was introduced in the 1980s by renowned herbalist Rosemary Gladstar, has been called Fire Cider. She began teaching students this old remedy in her herb school and thus revived the tradition in the US..
Today, we use this as a daily tonic for the many systems of the body that these various herbs support. Our recipe consists of raw, unfiltered, organic apple cider vinegar, infused for a minimum of six months with 12 different organic herbs and spices. We then strain off the vinegar and let it age.
Use a tablespoon as a dressing, add to a glass of room temp water in the warmer months, or put into a mug with honey in warm water in the cooler months. It's delicious! If you choose to take it straight as some people do, remember that it's hard on the ol' tooth enamel so be sure to follow with a water swish.
Apple Cider Vinegar
While vinegar has likely been around as long as fermented fruit has, the first documented evidence of it's use is from the Babylonians thousands of years ago.
Two very informative articles about the history and uses can be found at the National Library of Medicine and in this blog. ACV has been credited to aid in everything from weight loss, skin and hair repair, PH balance in the body, acid reflux, reduced joint pain and blood sugar regulation to wound cleaning as an anti-septic. That's a lot! What we do know for sure, is the long history of it's use as a medicinal remedy by natural healers from many traditions.
The origins of this powerful root are a bit uncertain, but it's thought to come from western Asia and Europe. It found itself across the continents as a both a condiment and natural remedy, used by herbalist for centuries both internally and externally. The traditional medicinal uses include as a stimulant for digestion
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Rodale's Illustrated Encyclopedia of Herbs, Published by Rodale Press, Inc. 1987
A Modern Herbal by Mrs. M. Grieve, Dover Publications, 1971
Herbal Medicine, Classic Edition, by Rudolf Fritz Weiss, M.D., 2001 Georg Thieme Verlag