Holistic Animal Therapies: Apple Cider Vinegar and Oxymels, what you need to know.

Ancient tonic ‘Oxymel’ is not only really fun to make, but it’s a grand and great exploration for any budding herbalist too.

I recently took on a rescue Dog called Rollo, who has recently been Coughing (Suspected  Kennel Cough). 

I prefer to use conventional medicines in extreme circumstances only.. So I took to my bible ‘The Complete Herbal Handbook for farm and stable’ (Julette de Bairacli Levy, 1975) 

In this book, she frequently mentions Honey a healing remedy for dogs.

So, I took to my stove. I poured 2/3rds of Vixen’s Raspberry and Blackcurrant Apple Cider Vinegar, (Already packed with Vitamin C) heated it gently and added 1/3rd of Manuka Honey (Make sure you use a quality, or Local honey, it does not have to be Manuka, but for Viral infections I find it is best). Heat gently without boiling. 

For Rollo I added some fresh Thyme and Rosemary and carried on stirring for 5-10 minutes until the honey had dissolved, after which I strained off the herbs. Bottle and keep in a dark, cool place. This cough tonic will keep for up to a year as honey is a natural preservative as is Apple Cider Vinegar. For Rollo, its only been 24 hours, but he seems to be coughing much less, and appears brighter in his face.

Oxymel –  from the Latin oxymeli meaning ‘acid & honey’ is an ancient Greek drink made from herbs, vinegar and honey. Traditionally an Oxymel recipe would be used to administer beneficial herbs that might not be so pleasant to take on their own. Different herbs can be used for personal taste or to meet your health needs – rosemary is energising, thyme and Oregano would be beneficial for upper respiratory infections and elderflowers help support the immune system. To find out more about Oxymels click here: 

Dr. D. C. Jarvis authored a bestselling book in 1958 called Folk Medicine 

in which he touted honey and apple cider vinegar as a panacea or cure-all.  He used this ancient Oxymel preparation to treat arthritis, gout, high cholesterol, as a metabolic stimulant to promote weight loss, and for longevity and life extension. 

If in doubt, consult a licensed health care professional before embarking on any kind of therapy.

March Blog

The Truth About MOTHER

The Mother in Apple Cider Vinegar is a web of string like strands that contain lots of friendly bacteria.  That naturally occur when fermenting the apples. That cloudy substance contains powerful enzymes, and life boosting minerals, as well as natural Malic acid.  Which fights the nasty toxins in your body.

A lot of supermarket brands out there have pasteurised, and filtered out all the beneficial bacteria in there Apple Cider Vinegar.  And other brands you see claiming they contain MOTHER, usually come from foreign sources, where there is no accounting for the quality of fruit used, or the sprays used on the trees.  So, you may be drinking MOTHER, but probably ingesting all kinds of fertiliser nastiness too.

The mother also contains a wealth of probiotics – the good kind of bacteria! Probiotics strengthen your immune system and can protect against certain illnesses. They improve your digestive health, creating a healthy balance between the good and bad bacteria inside you. Too much bad bacteria in your body can cause intestinal diseases, like celiac or Crohn’s disease. Probiotics found in the mother of apple cider vinegar can help prevent those diseases and keep you healthy.

The mother can also improve heart health and lower cholesterol. It’s often recommended for people with diabetes, as it helps keep blood sugar levels in check and improves insulin sensitivity. 

With my Orchards I never use sprays or other nasties, and I don’t speed up the fermentation process.  I let Mother occur naturally as nature intended.