Drumroll, please. I am about to introduce you to the most powerful player in my arsenal: The infamous Morning Drink. To my friends, family members, and anyone who has spent a morning with me - regardless of location-, they know alllllll about it... and I am proud to say many have become converts to the powerful, medicinal effects of this tonic. It is a non-negotiable start to my day!
This is the ultimate alkalizing, digestion boosting, inflammation fighting drink. It is my cannot-live-without morning staple and probably should have been one of the first recipes I shared on my website. I'm sorry! forgive me! here it is!
It is important to have this drink first thing upon waking in the morning, before you do anything else. While we sleep our bodies are undergoing tremendous detoxification processes- did you know your liver (the king of breaking down toxins in our bodies) is the most active at night while you're in a deep sleep? The Morning Drink helps to cleanse the work of the liver by stimulating our excretory systems and to prepare our bodies and digestive system for the day ahead.
**This is also a wonderful addition to a Candida fighting protocol due to its many anti-microbial and anti-fungal qualities- from basically every ingredient used. Please see my handout on Candida here for more information!
Here's what's at play and why:
APPLE CIDER VINEGAR //
By far my favorite pantry item, I use ACV in multiple forms daily- not just internally in food, but externally on my skin and even for housecleaning and hygiene. I consider ACV to be the ultimate superfood: a product of fermentation, it is full of beneficial live enzymes. The live form of beneficial yeasts are powerful bacteria and fungus fighters, especially against Candida Albicans. It is highly alkaline once it hits your bloodstream, and stimulates your gastric juices and enzymes so that you can properly digest your food and absorb your nutrients more effectively. It is helpful in reducing heartburn and can even take the place of dangerous antacids like TUMS that will deplete your hydrochloric acid production over time, leading to a host of health problems and poor assimilation of nutrients and failure to break down proteins properly. poorly digested proteins= gut damage and intestinal permeability! IMPORTANT: be sure to get the RAW, UNPASTEURIZED version of ACV that has not been heated or strained- it needs to retain "The Mother" (beneficial, live bacteria) in order to be fully effective. I love Bragg's ACV!
ORGANIC LEMON JUICE //
Though acidic in its raw form, lemon juice becomes incredibly alkalizing once it is digested into your bloodstream. It is a powerful source of vitamin C and ample antioxidants. Lemon juice is an excellent immune booster and, like ACV, helps to stimulate your gastric juices to assist in enzymatic breakdown of your food.
CEYLON CINNAMON //
When choosing cinnamon, I prefer the Ceylon varietal. Also known as "real" cinnamon, it has a more deep and rich flavour that doesn't taste too tangy or metallic in food like some cheaper kinds of cinnamon like the commonly used Cassia. Ceylon also has far lower levels of Coumarin, which can be toxic to the liver in high doses. Ceylon cinnamon is a magnificent blood sugar regulator, powerful Candida and parasite/gi infection battler (by virtue of being highly antiviral and antimicrobial), and cancer preventative. It also makes this super tangy and bitter drink not taste like shit! *points*
Turmeric is the natural, food-based source of the constituent "curcumin"- one of the most potent anti-inflammatory properties in the plant kingdom by virtue of being a powerhouse antioxidant. Whereas food sources of curcumin aren't as potent as compounded curcumin supplements, they are a valuable source of this antioxidant. It assists our bodies in fighting oxidation (cell damage from free radicals) and thus premature aging and runaway inflammation and cell damage that occurs as a domino effect. Curcumin boosts levels of BDNF, a growth hormone that our brains need for proper function. Deficiencies in BDNF have been linked to Alzheimers, depression, and other mental spectrum disorders.
Not necessary to the morning drink per se, but I love it as an addition and many have ginger on hand already. There's a reason why we think of ginger-containing foods when we are sick- it is a powerful root that has been used medicinally for thousands and thousands of years. A time honored nausea fighter, it is also anti-viral and antibacterial. It has a warming effect on the body which helps to speed up metabolism and circulation, boost the immune system and clear unwelcome bacteria. It reduces gas and bloating and can even prevent stomach ulcers. Like cinnamon, it also helps to make this drink palatable.
CRACKED BLACK PEPPER //
The active constituent in black pepper is called "piperin". Piperin, in combination with Curcumin, boosts the bioavailability of curcumin by TWO THOUSAND PERCENT! This means your body and cells are more able to absorb and use the beneficial properties of curcumin before they leave the bloodstream too quickly. The Indians have been onto something for thousands of years by always cooking turmeric alongside black pepper. It boosts HCL production in the stomach and acts as a powerful antioxidants.
MCT OIL //
MCT is a type of oil that is extracted and isolated in high concentrations from coconut and palm oil. There are several different kinds of fatty acids, and your body metabolizes all of them differently. This particular isolated form is referred to as a "medium chain triglyceride." These MCT's are much easier for the body to disassemble and assimilate, so that they can be converted directly into energy for your cells instead of into glucose (which can be stored and turned into fat). MCT oil is also incredibly high in caprylic acid, which is a natural antiviral and antibacterial- AKA, Candida and dysbiosis fighter! I love Bulletproof Brain Octane as a super high quality and clean source of MCT oil. Many people find MCT to be a great energy booster for exercise and that it helps them develop more mental clarity. Remember, your brain is made up 60% of fat... fat= brain food! low fat is absolutely terrible for you.
8-12 + oz hot filtered water
juice of 1/2 a lemon
2-3 TBSP Raw Apple Cider Vinegar
ginger root (about 1-2 TBSP of fresh pressed juice, or 1 inch grated. ginger is easier to grate with a microplane when frozen!)
turmeric root (about 1-2 TBSP of freshed pressed juice, or same as above. You can also use powdered turmeric!
2 twists of cracked black pepper
generous sprinkle of ceylon cinnamon, to taste
1-2 TBSP of MCT oil (start with less and build up!)
- heat filtered water on stove.
- if using fresh turmeric and ginger, remove skins and either grate with a microplane, or run a bunch through a juicer. fresh pressed juice tastes better in my opinion, makes for a smoother drink and keeps about a week in the fridge.
- in a large glass, combine the rest of the ingredients.
- when water is boiling, add to the glass and stir well!
- add cold water if necessary
- if enjoying this daily like I suggest, it may be best to drink with a glass straw. although most of these ingredients are very alkaline once they reach your bloodstream, they are acidic in their raw form and can be damaging to tooth enamel if consumed in excess. Drinking through a straw will minimize tooth and enamel contact.