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7 Reasons to Drink Lemon Water

by Dominique Vanier, B.Sc.H., M.Env.Sc.

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Many of us look for an energy boost upon waking each morning. Whether the purpose is to overcome that feeling of grogginess or conquer the morning routine, an extra punch to get the day moving is often necessary.

7 Reasons to Drink Lemon Water

Lemon water can be the ideal morning drink, especially if it is consumed first thing on an empty stomach. Tissues tend to be less hydrated after sleeping through the night, so a glass of warm lemon water is a perfect option for becoming sharp and alert.

7 Benefits of Drinking Lemon Water

Good dose of vitamin C

1- Lemon water enhances energy by supporting and stimulating bodily systems, including the digestive system and cellular metabolism, as well as delivers several other health benefits.

2- Provides a good dose of vitamin C. Vitamin C is imperative for a number of bodily functions including: wound healing; increasing absorption of iron; protection against immune deficiencies; maintaining the health of eyes, bones, and teeth; and keeping your skin healthier and wrinkle-free.

3- Supports detoxification. Lemon water may support liver detoxification by activating digestive enzymes in the liver. Additionally, it may also be effective at lowering blood and liver cholesterol as shown in an in-vivo study.

Lemon water enhances energy

4- Provides a source of other important nutrients. Lemons also contain calcium, iron, potassium, B vitamins, and fibre in smaller amounts.

5- Provides anti-oxidants (fights free radicals). Lemons contain about 60 per cent of the daily-recommended intake of vitamin C. As an anti-oxidant, vitamin C is able to help block free radicals – substances that damage DNA. Free radicals also contribute to oxidative stress levels, which is a precursor to many chronic diseases. Anti-oxidants like vitamin C are therefore important because they may help prevent damage from free radicals that are associated with cancer development, atherosclerosis, Alzheimer’s, and other chronic pathologies.

6- Can help maintain a healthy BMI. Lemons contain a compound called polyphenols, which have been shown to play a role in the breakdown of lipids as well as positively impact glucose transport in obesity. Polyphenols have also been shown to activate specific receptors that are involved in the regulation of cellular differentiation, development, and metabolism (also known as peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors). In a study conducted on mice, lemon polyphenols suppressed body weight gain and body fat accumulation levels, as well as significantly improved glucose, insulin, leptin levels, suggesting that it may play a role in decreasing insulin resistance.

7- Can help flush toxins. Drinking adequate water alone helps remove toxins from the body and urinary tract. Adding an extra cup of warm lemon water a day can expedite this process.

However, before we all rush to the grocery store to pick up some lemons, those with gastro-esophageal reflux disease (GERD) or acid reflux should take caution when consuming the fruit. Acidic fruits such as lemons can be aggravating to the mucosal lining of the upper gastro-intestinal tract, so it is best to find other fruits that will deliver similar benefits.

While there isn’t a hard-and-fast rule on the precise quantity of lemon juice in your water, 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice in 1 cup of filtered warm water is usually enough to get things moving. If you wish to awaken your taste buds at the same time, you can try adding a pinch of cayenne pepper, a pinch of sea salt, and 1 tablespoon of maple syrup to your lemon water.

All it takes is a simple change in your morning routine to start feeling more energetic and awake. And, at the very least, lemon water simply tastes better.

References
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2581754/
http://www.webmd.com/diet/the-benefits-of-vitamin-c
http://web.stanford.edu/group/hopes/cgi-bin/hopes_test/vitamin-c/
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12569111
http://www.cancer.gov/about-cancer/causes-prevention/risk/diet/antioxidants-fact-sheet#q3
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11990004

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