I always squeeze a little fresh lemon in a glass of water, especially since doing the research for this article! I’ve included some of my favorite ways to use lemons at the bottom…let me know how you like yours!
Top 10 Reasons to include lemons in your day:
1. Boost your immune system: Their high antioxidant content in the form of Vitamin C can boost your immune system and regular consumption can help prevent, or speed up your recovery from a cold. Vitamin C neutralizes free radicals, those inflammatory substances in the body that can damage cells.
2. Antibacterial and antiviral properties: citric acid’s low pH breaks down the cell membrane of many harmful bacterial strains.
3. Fight fatigue: lemon oil can stimulate brain activity. Add some fresh lemon to your water and sip throughout the day.
4. Nobody likes bad breath! Lemon juice is a great oral cleanser and will leave you with a fresh taste and smell.
5. Palate cleanser: having a bit of water with lemon between courses or flavors will cleanse your palate more than just sipping plain water.
6. Balances pH: lemons will help alkalize your body. Though you may think of lemons/citrus as an acidic food, the citric acid in lemons doesn’t create acidity once it is metabolized by your body.(read more about alkaline acid balance here)
7. Naturally detoxifying: lemons dissolve uric acid and other toxins in the liver. Their high potassium content combats symptoms like constipation, headaches and appetite loss.
8. Improves circulation: Vitamin P (bioflavenoids that help Vitamin C perform its function) found in lemons is known to strengthen the blood vessels.
9: Keeps you regular: lemon juice stimulates the liver to produce bile, which is an essential fat emulsifier (break down) stored in the gallbladder, and released into the small intestine in response to stimulation by fatty food. This essential function keeps everything moving on schedule.
10. B Complex Vitamins: lemons are a good source of pantothenic acid, pyridoxine, and folates – essential B vitamins that the body doesn’t produce on its own.
I eat lemons….
-I like to start every day with a cup of hot water with a quarter of a fresh squeezed lemon and some ginger. I got into the habit back in January when I did a cleanse (you can read about it here). It made me feel so much more hydrated in the morning than drinking coffee first thing - which I now enjoy that a little later in the morning when I have more time to savor it. The lemon/ginger water really stimulated my digestion and made me feel awesome right away.
-I always buy organic lemons when they’re available to avoid the sprays and chemicals used on commercial farms. More costly buying organic? Maybe immediately, but I feel like I’m saving my body the extra work of processing out the bad stuff that down the road could add up to costly health problems.
-I add fresh squeezed lemons to my pesto, and I love using the zest to really bring out the lemon flavor. Be sure to wash the outside skin of your lemon before zesting.
-I squeeze fresh lemon over my mixed green salads with some olive oil and a little crushed pepper for a light, tasty dressing.
-Fresh lemon in my fruit and green shakes brings out the freshness of the fruit and veggies.
Read more about the healthy properties of Lemons at these great links:
LaJollaMom: Lemon Water in the Morning
Earth in Common: Lemons for Health
LifeMojo.com: Top 10 Health Benefits of Lemon Water