March 04, 2014

loving lemon.

Right now, I'm loving lemon.  No, not Liz Lemon, although I love that woman more than life can say.

YEAHHHH photo LizRunning_zps3fab80b6.gif

I'm talking about fresh, squeezed lemons. It's amazing what a big difference a little change can make. For weeks, or maybe even months I keep reading about the benefits of drinking fresh squeezed lemon in your water. Not just your ice water but also hot lemon water in the mornings. For added health benefits and overall wellness.  Mike is a huge fan of lemon in his ice water. I'm still not sold on it. Yes, I like it, but I don't like it when I'm eating. If we are at a restaurant it's easier to just both order our water with lemon, I then give him my slice when his runs out of flavor. Note: We get refills a lot through our meal - we are water fiends.

For the past few days - I've been taking some time to fix myself a cup of hot lemon water. I usually workout in the morning so the last thing on my mind is often a hot cup of anything. Usually I'm still battling leftover sweats even after getting out of the shower. I probably should take more time to cool down but time is limited in the morning. I try to give myself ample time to stop sweating before applying my make-up but there isn't always time. (TIME... just thought I'd drive that word home, I need a thesaurus). The kicker, when I put on moisturizer it gets worse, especially when there's sunblock. Where was I? You'd didn't come here to read about me sweating in the morning did you?

So yeah, I make myself a fresh cup of lemon water.  It's pretty simple. I know a lot of people will boil water to make this like they would tea, but I don't have time to think that far ahead in the morning. OK I have time, but I don't want to. Instead I use my Keurig.

Making Lemon Water using my Keurig...
  • Get your favorite coffee mug, and squeeze in some fresh lemon. I've seen some people use half of a lemon, but since I'm still new at this and working my way up the ladder I take 1-2 slices (disc shaped like shown above) and squeeze the juice into my cup.
  • Turn on the Keurig and get annoyed that it takes "forever" to heat up. Wait for the little mug lights to pop on to tell you it's ready.
  • Trick your Keurig into thinking you're making a mug of joe by opening the compartment where you set your instant tea or coffee cup and then shut it. 
  • Wait for the coffee size lights to light up and flash - then choose the amount of water you'd like to add to your lemon juice.
  • The machine will go through it's cycle and then shoot out hot water for you to enjoy with your lemon juice. Simple, right?
  • Enjoy.
I usually do this after I take a shower, before I've eaten anything (and usually after my workout) sipping on it while I'm doing my make-up. I usually brush my teeth first, if you have sensitive teeth maybe wait to brush after you finish your lemon water.

I'm not a fan of REALLY hot drinks, I usually wait for my coffee to cool a bit, or my tea, and same goes for this - it's still warm but I can sip it without worrying I'm going to burn my mouth.

10 Benefits of Drinking 
Warm Lemon Water Every Morning
 via Tasty Yummies (side note: I'm currently obsessed with this blog)

1) Aids Digestion. Lemon juice flushes out unwanted materials and toxins from the body. It’s atomic composition is similar to saliva and the hydrochloric acid of digestive juices. It encourages the liver to produce bile which is an acid that is required for digestion. Lemons are also high in minerals and vitamins and help loosen ama, or toxins, in the digestive tract. The digestive qualities of lemon juice help to relieve symptoms of indigestion, such as heartburn, belching and bloating. The American Cancer Society actually recommends offering warm lemon water to cancer sufferers to help stimulate bowel movements.

2) Cleanses Your System / is a Diuretic. Lemon juice helps flush out unwanted materials in part because lemons increase the rate of urination in the body. Therefore toxins are released at a faster rate which helps keep your urinary tract healthy. The citric acid in lemons helps maximize enzyme function, which stimulates the liver and aids in detoxification.
3) Boosts Your Immune System. Lemons are high in vitamin C, which is great for fighting colds.  They’re high in potassium, which stimulates brain and nerve function. Potassium also helps control blood pressure. Ascorbic acid (vitamin C) found in lemons demonstrates anti-inflammatory effects, and is used as complementary support for asthma and other respiratory symptoms plus it enhances iron absorption in the body; iron plays an important role in immune function. Lemons also contain saponins, which show antimicrobial properties that may help keep cold and flu at bay. Lemons also reduce the amount of phlegm produced by the body.
4) Balances pH Levels. Lemons are one of the most alkalizing foods for the body. Sure, they are acidic on their own, but inside our bodies they’re alkaline (the citric acid does not create acidity in the body once metabolized). Lemons contain both citric and ascorbic acid, weak acids easily metabolized from the body allowing the mineral content of lemons to help alkalize the blood. Disease states only occur when the body pH is acidic. Drinking lemon water regularly can help to remove overall acidity in the body, including uric acid in the joints, which is one of the primary causes of pain and inflammation.
5) Clears Skin. The vitamin C component as well as other antioxidants helps decrease wrinkles and blemishes and it helps to combat free radical damage. Vitamin C is vital for healthy glowing skin while its alkaline nature kills some types of bacteria known to cause acne. It can actually be applied directly to scars or age spots to help reduce their appearance. Since lemon water purges toxins from your blood, it would also be helping to keep your skin clear of blemishes from the inside out. The vitamin C contained in the lemon rejuvenates the skin from within your body.
6) Energizes You and Enhances Your Mood. The energy a human receives from food comes from the atoms and molecules in your food. A reaction occurs when the positive charged ions from food enter the digestive tract and interact with the negative charged enzymes. Lemon is one of the few foods that contain more negative charged ions, providing your body with more energy when it enters the digestive tract. The scent of lemon also has mood enhancing and energizing properties. The smell of lemon juice can brighten your mood and help clear your mind. Lemon can also help reduce anxiety and depression.
7) Promotes Healing. Ascorbic acid (vitamin C), found in abundance in lemons, promotes wound healing, and is an essential nutrient in the maintenance of healthy bones, connective tissue, and cartilage. As noted previously, vitamin C also displays anti-inflammatory properties. Combined, vitamin C is an essential nutrient in the maintenance of good health and recovery from stress and injury.
8) Freshens Breath. Besides fresher breath, lemons have  been known to help relieve tooth pain and gingivitis. Be aware that citric acid can erode tooth enamel, so you should be mindful of this. No not brush your teeth just after drinking your lemon water. It is best to brush your teeth first, then drink your lemon water, or wait a significant amount of time after to brush your teeth. Additionally, you can rinse your mouth with purified water after you finish your lemon water.
9) Hydrates Your Lymph System. Warm water and lemon juice supports the immune system by hydrating and replacing fluids lost by your body. When your body is deprived of water, you can definitely feel the side effects, which include: feeling tired, sluggish, decreased immune function, constipation, lack of energy, low/high blood pressure, lack of sleep, lack of mental clarity and feeling stressed, just to name a few.
10) Aids in Weight Loss. Lemons are high in pectin fiber, which helps fight hunger cravings. Studies have shown people who maintain a more alkaline diet, do in fact lose weight faster. I personally find myself making better choices throughout the day, if I start my day off right, by making a health conscious choice to drink warm lemon water first thing every morning.

I am honestly not sure if all this is true - but it's a really simple thing to do in the morning AND why not try right? It's been two days and I have NO complaints. I guess I'll check back and let you know how it goes after continued sipping. Cheers to see if this will help all of the above!!!

What have you tweaked or changed in your daily routine to make your health a little better?

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Carolyn said...

I love drinking water, but I just can't do it with lemon added. I have tried so many times and I just hate it. HAHAHAHA

Rebecca Virginia said...

but liz lemon is great too! haha Just found your blog btw and super happy I did! just followed =]

Devon said...

Thank you for this Kelly! It's great information. Drinking water is so important. I like to think I drink a lot, but know I should definitely drink more (getting some now...).

I wasn't so sold on the lemon water thing either (the taste, not the benefits), but I think I'd like hot lemon water. I'll refer back to this for sure.

Christina said...

I've seriously had a lemon water draft saved for months. I love it! I can't do hot, but I have a huge glass of icy lemon water every single day. Love it!

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