You may have been hearing a lot about lemonade lately, which made you think about the refreshing beverage – yes, that’s right, we are talking about the beverage, not the cheating allegations. Lemonade is a summertime favorite as you may now be noticing with all the fast-food commercials pushing their “homemade lemonade.” But purchasing lemonade from your local fast-food joint won’t improve your health as it would if you took the time to make a pitcher yourself. The commercial variety tends to be loaded with sugar, which we all know comes with a slew of health problems.
Lemons have been recognized as a health food for their endless health benefits, so here are 10 reasons why you should take the time to mix up some homemade lemonade this summer.
Indigestion and constipation: If you’re having troubles going to the bathroom or you’re suffering after each meal to digest, these are simple problems that lemon water can help fix. Consume lemon water prior to, during, or after your meal to obtain relief from indigestion or impeding constipation, as lemon acts as a natural cleanser.
Detoxification: Lemons contain enzymes to help aid in digestion and promote detoxification as they trick the liver into producing bile. Bile helps keep foods moving through the digestive tract, making way for better nutrient absorption as well.
Immune system boost: Lemons are packed with vitamins your immune system requires in order to stay healthy. By starting your day with some lemon water you can give your immune system the boost it needs to keep you healthy all day.
Skin care: Because lemon water can help flush the body and aid in detoxification, your skin can benefit as well. Furthermore, lemons have the vitamins to promote collagen production, leaving you with smooth-looking skin.
Stroke risk: The American Heart Association recommends consuming citrus fruits – lemons included – as a means to reduce your risk of stroke. In a study, women who consumed the highest amount of citrus fruits reduced their risk of stroke by 19 percent, compared to those with the lowest consumption.
Hydration: Adding lemons to your water can make it more enjoyable to drink, which can help you get up to those recommended eight glasses a day. Additionally, drinking warm lemon water helps hydrate your lymph system by supporting your immune system and replacing fluids lost by the body. Staying hydrated is important because our bodies are made up of water basically. Even the slightest drop in hydration is enough to have you feeling foggy.
Respiratory disorders: Drinking lemonade and lemon water can aid in breathing issues related to respiratory disorders such as asthma. Furthermore, high amounts of vitamins found in lemons support the immune system for long-term respiratory problems.
Dental care: Lemon juice massaged into the area of toothache can help alleviate pain and reduce odors brought on by gum disease.
Weight loss: Now that you’re no longer constipated and well detoxed, you will also experience weight loss effects of lemon water. Furthermore, lemons contain a component that helps you feel fuller, longer, which can suppress appetite – definitely a helpful little something for your weight loss.
Energy and mood boost: Rather than grabbing a coffee in the morning, opt for lemon water. This is because lemons contain negatively charged ions, which work to boost energy when they enter the digestive tract without the crash afterwards. Furthermore, the scent of lemon has been found to reduce stress and improve mood, so you may want to leave some lemons on your desk or out in the open at home.
Although consuming lemons, lemon water, and lemonade is typically safe, if you are suffering from GERD or other kinds of acid reflux, keep in mind that citrus foods have been found to worsen these conditions.
Furthermore, the acids found in lemons may eat away at tooth enamel, so it’s recommended that you wait until after you consumed lemons or lemon water to brush your teeth. You can also drink lemonade from a straw, so less acid ends up on your teeth.
So if you’re sold on lemon water and lemonade as an all-around health beverage, here is a skinny, healthy recipe you can try to quench your thirst and start getting healthy. For this recipe, you will need either coconut nectar, coconut sugar, or honey for sweetness, one cup of water, one cup of freshly squeezed lemon juice, and four cups of cold water.
Add your sweetener of choice along with one cup of water in a saucepan, bring to a boil and stir frequently. Once boiled, remove from the heat and pour into your glass pitcher. Add the lemon juice and the remaining cold water, and allow to chill in the refrigerator until it’s time to enjoy. You may wish to add ice cubes when serving.
Now that you know how to make a healthy and delicious variety of lemonade, have some fun with it by adding berries or mint for different flavors – the possibilities are truly endless.
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