I don’t drink coffee, soda, or really anything other than water and the occasional juice. Before you start singing my praises – I don’t drink pop because I can’t handle the carbonation. I don’t drink coffee because I can’t stand the taste. So… I sort of make healthy drinking choices by default. But I’ll take it!
One of the drinks I LOVE to drink first thing in the morning on an empty stomach is hot lemon water with a bit of honey. I have this amazing little portable lemon squeezer / cup that makes it super easy to make.
I first started drinking lemon water in college. It was part of some diet plan book I had purchased. I remember trying a few days of the diet and ditching everything about it – except the lemon water. And it was the one thing in the diet I was looking forward to the least!
I only use half a lemon for an entire glass. Most days I don’t add any honey. But if I decide to I just put a pinch of it in. (Some lemons are WAYY more sour than others.)
The first day I didn’t notice anything different. But by the seventh day I most certainly did! The temperature of the water really is key here. Drinking any water, especially warm water, first thing in the morning can help flush the digestive system and rehydrate the body. Giving your body water when you first wake up is a great way to get your body and your mind going.
When you’re sleeping you typically haven’t been drinking for at least 8 hours. Giving the body adequate water when you first wake up is a great way to get your body and your mind going.
Lemons contain vitamin C… not a lot, around 30-50 milligrams per lemon. They also contain potassium. Drinking lemon water first thing in the morning gives the body a chance to absorb these vitamins effectively and can provide a small immune boost.
There is some evidence that drinking water, especially lemon water, first thing in the morning can help maintain a healthy weight. Researchers in Germany found that drinking enough water increased metabolism. According to this article:
After drinking approximately 17 ounces of water, the subjects’ metabolic rates — or the rate at which calories are burned — increased by 30% for both men and women. The increases occurred within 10 minutes of water consumption and reached a maximum after about 30 to 40 minutes.
To be honest with you – I’ve seen no change in my weight due to lemon water – and after a year in the ICU being fed via a tube in my belly it’s not exactly something that I really want. Plus – even if it helps with losing weight it’s probably more due to the fact that you’re not as hungry if you’re well hydrated.
While I’m thinking of it I do want to give you a list of things that lemon water won’t do as well!
- It won’t prevent or cure cancer.
- It won’t increase your IQ – you laugh, but some people have claimed it does!
- It won’t ‘flush toxins’ from your body.
- It won’t balance your pH levels.
The bottom line is that lemon water won’t be a miracle cure but it is definitely a better alternative to caffeinated drinks because it can help with energy, clearing up your skin and it will help you drink more water!
One word of caution: lemon can be very damaging to the enamel on your teeth. While diluting it in water should make it safe, I still usually brush my teeth within an hour or two after I drink it. (I had to add that in there because I know my mother-in-law, who is a dental hygienist, would be so proud!) 🙂