Sharon is a human resources professional who enjoys researching health related topics and sharing what she finds.
Lemons are full of healthy goodness, but how do you get the most benefit from a lemon? They have a sour taste, so eating them as they are is not very appealing. I find the easiest way to take advantage of the nutrients in a lemon is to squeeze it into a nice, cold glass of water!
A Squeeze of Lemon
When you squeeze a fresh lemon the pulp is also added to the water and you have a fresh glass of lemonade without the sugar. It is not sweet, but you will get used to it and it is very refreshing. I find it more enjoyable now than just plain water. The lemon squeeze adds that little extra taste.
I started drinking lemon water at the suggestion of my athletic therapist and I am so happy that I took her advice. I had been having back problems and she couldn't find anything really wrong with my back and decided it was likely "organic." She explained that all your organs are attached to your spine and things could get pulled around inside, but how does drinking lemon water help with this?
Cleansing Your Liver and Gall Bladder
I have gallstones and this was confirmed by an incidental ultrasound discovery. I had no symptoms whatsoever. I saw a surgeon who basically said, "if it's not bothering you there is no point in removing your gall bladder." I was happy to hear this news, but of course, I am still carrying around this bag of stones everywhere I go. This can't be healthy, and must be a weight on my spine as my athletic therapist suggested.
She then recommended a book called the Liver and Gall bladder cleanse. It's a natural way of flushing the stones out of your gall bladder. Even though I have no symptoms; having stones in your gall bladder is not a good thing and may certainly impede the optimal functioning of my digestive system.
The cleanse is a very involved process and I have yet to try it so in the interim I started drinking lemon water and I noticed changes right away.
My Experience with Drinking Lemon Water Routinely
When you change anything in your diet you usually find your body reacts strongly at first. This does not mean that it is not a good change. It may not always be pleasant but you will need to soldier through these changes as your body adjusts to the new norm.
Your body naturally adapts to what you consume whether is it good for you or not, so it may seem that your new healthy change is not good at all. It may produce headaches or stomach upsets. But hold on and stay the course the outcome is certainly worth it.
A great example of this is the first week I started drinking lemon water. I didn't feel well. I experienced an immediate change and without going into too much of a description - I was visiting the washroom quite a bit for both reasons!
Flushing out Your Digestive System
The change I experienced in bowel habit was likely because I was flushing out bile. Gallstones are formations of hardened bile and it became quite apparent that the lemon water was flushing out my digestive system. There was a green color that was not there before and I was not eating more green vegetables (green bowel movements can happen when you eat a lot of greens). The only aspect of my diet that had changed was the addition of lemon water.
Adjusting to the Change in Diet
I had an nauseous type feeling for the first week but then it turned around. My body adjusted to the change in my diet and it appeared the "stuff" that was being flushed out had lessened. I was amazed. Drinking lemon water regularly energizes me. It makes me feel thirsty for more water which is a good thing because I am notorious for not drinking enough water. Now my body craves it and I have started to drink more water naturally without feeling like I have to or should.
How Much Lemon Water Should You Drink?
My routine is to cut a lemon in half and squeeze it into a large (2 cups) glass of water each morning. I am not a physician and I can only tell you about my experience, but I have continued this habit and I feel much better.
The Benefits of Drinking Lemon Water
Lemons are good for you but they are not the easiest fruit to add to your diet. Unlike other citris fruits, like oranges, they are tart and not very appetizing. The best way to enjoy their health benefits naturally is to squeeze all that goodness into a glass of water. You will also get the pulp in your water and that makes it a pure and natural drink.
Below are just a few of the many benefits of drinking lemon water on a regular basis:
- Keeps your skin healthy and bright.
- Good for the liver and digestive system. Helps to flush out toxins.
- Helps to prevent the formation of liver, kidney and gallstones.
- Keeps the body hydrated and energized.
- A natural medicine, lemon and water has antibacterial as well as antiviral properties.
- Helps to combat inflammation in the body.
Water Infusing: Add Some Taste to Your Water
I find it hard to drink enough water because, let's face it, it's not terribly tasty.
I squeeze a lemon into my water and I find that I enjoy it more with that little kick of lemon. However, you don't have to limit yourself to a single squeeze of fruit. A great way to add some taste to that water is by "infusing" it with healthy ingredients.
Below are some wonderful options for flavoring your water.
Ingredients for Flavor Infusing:
- Fruit: Berries (either frozen or fresh), melon, tropical fruits, citrus, apples, pears
- Vegetables: carrots, cucumber, celery, fennel
- Herbs: thyme, mint, basil, cilantro, rosemary
- Spices: cardamom, fresh ginger, cloves, vanilla bean, cinnamon sticks
- Edible flowers: violets, lavender, citrus blossoms, hibiscus, pansies
The water itself can be filtered, tap, or bottled spring water. Just use whatever you normally drink.
To Infuse Your Water You Will Need:
- Large bottles with lids, or small mason jars for individual portions.
- Fruits or vegetables (peeled or unpeeled) and herbs/spices of your choice
- Thinly slice or cube your ingredients
- Add the prepared fruit, herbs, spices and veggies to your bottle and fill it with cold water.
- Allow the water to sit (the longer it sits the better the flavor).
Citrus infuses quite readily but the herbs and berries will take a little longer.
Watch for the color of the water to change, this will occur when the berries start to infuse.
You can leave it at room temperature for awhile but if you are not drinking it right away it is best to put it in the fridge.
Commerical water Infusers are available for this purpose and are not expensive but you can just do it yourself as outlined above. Try experimenting with a variety of ingredients to create unique flavors until you find your favorite!
Infusing water is a much healthier alternative to the juices you buy in the store that are chock full of sugar.
- Phytochemical, antimicrobial, and antioxidant activities of different citrus juice concentrates
Phytochemicals are known to provide certain health benefits such as anti‐inflammatory, antimicrobial, anti-hypertensive, and anti-diabetic effects. Citrus fruits are rich sources of phytochemicals.
- Incredible Health Benefits of Drinking Lemon Water | Reader's Digest
Celebrities and naturopaths won't start their day without guzzling a glass of lemon water. Here's what you need to know about the benefits of lemon water.
- 5 Health Benefits Of Drinking Lemon Water Every Day
Drinking lemon water is cheap, it’s easy, and it seems safe (as long as you don’t try to exist on lemon water alone)—but does it really work wonders? Here's what to know.
- 7 Ways Your Body Benefits from Lemon Water
There is little research on the impact on health of drinking water with lemon. However there is research on the benefits of lemons and water separately. It's stands to reason that putting the two together will have a postive impact on your health.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.
Questions & Answers
Question: Is it advisable to use a blender to make a blender? Secondly, do I drink the lemon water only in the morning or can you drink it anytime?
Answer: I don't use a blender. I hand squeeze the lemon into the water and generally best to drink first thing in the morning but you can enjoy lemon squeezed into your water anytime.
Question: Do you add the lemon to hot or cold water?
Answer: The water can be room temperature or cold but not hot.
© 2013 Sharon Bellissimo
What Do You Think?
Liza from USA on June 15, 2020:
Absolutely love the lemon water. I always read about the benefits of drinking lemon water. I think it's beneficial to drink it because it's working. I prefer both. Cold during summer and warm during winter. Thanks for sharing this great article.
Lorelei Cohen from Canada on May 28, 2013:
I am in the midst of a terrible cold and sitting here sipping a hot honey lemon and water drink. These are keeping my throat soothed somewhat from all the coughing. Lemons truly are a miracle food.
Loraine Brummer from Hartington, Nebraska on May 26, 2013:
Very interesting. I'm going to give it a try.
MarcStorm LM on May 20, 2013:
Lemon is definitely the way to go. I've heard that sailors, explorers, etc, back centuries ago, used to keep lemons on board to stave off scurvy. Lemons absolutely fight ailments & have healthy attribtues. I remember when I was younger and my mom had a glass bottle of lemon juice for cooking and I kept taking shots of it until I didn't want anymore and sure enough, later in life, the taste etc.(lemon's healthy toxins) came back to help fight off some stuff. I'm what you would call an anomaly! lol Also, when I'm not drinking water, I'm drinking sprite(lemon & lime soda) but yeah I really need to eat more fruits and veggies and was just recently thinking of getting a container of lemon juice! Great lens!
Angela F from Seattle, WA on May 20, 2013:
I've always believed lemon water to be healthy for you but didn't know of its effect on gallstones till now. Thanks for the new info :)
ChristyZ on May 20, 2013:
Very interesting to learn about the health benefits!
Frischy from Kentucky, USA on May 20, 2013:
I enjoy squeezing some lemon into my water. I just let the fruit float around in my glass with the ice cubes. I have never used this much lemon at one time though. It sounds like it would be worth a try! Just think of all the great vitamins and antioxidants you are getting when you do this! And zero calories, basically! Much cheaper than soda! Win. Win. Win!!