When life gives you lemons… | Daily News


When life gives you lemons…

Continuing our series on Citrus fruits, readers will recall that we have unfinished business with Lemons! Last week we touched on the lemon fruit but the race is not complete yet. This week we touch on Lemon Juice. Green Thumbs speaks to Institute of Indigenous Medicine, Department of Dravyaguna Vignana, Senior Lecturer, Dr. S.D. Hapuarachchi as she takes us through the rest of our journey with lemons.

“Having fruit juice in your refrigerator is always a wise choice, as you start your day normally with what you find in your fridge. Lemon Juice is a good choice to have in your fridge as it promotes hydration; it’s a good source of Vitamin C, supports weight loss, improves the skin quality, aids in digestion, freshens breath and prevents kidney stones. In this day and age the young are attracted to drinks that are marketed intelligently such as Coca-Cola (Coke, is a carbonated soft drink) and caffeinated drinks (Sodas and energy drinks). Drinking these beverages frequently is not advisable and making it an early morning routine may not be such a good idea. On the other hand if you can go for a fruit juice every morning, at least you will be assured a healthy lifestyle,” said Hapuarachchi.

Lemon water is water with a bit of lemon juice squirted in it to give it a refreshing taste. Lemon juice is the very sour liquid that you squeeze directly out of lemons and could be taken with some sugar.

Hapuarachchi also highlighted the presence of Vitamin C in Lemon Juice. Vitamin C is a primary antioxidant that helps protect cells from damaging free radicals. Free radicals are associated with human disease, including cancer, atherosclerosis, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and many others. This is all the more reason for one to get into the habit of drinking fruit juice. Antioxidants are the body’s soldiers against the damage done by free radicals. Antioxidants are nutrients as well as enzymes that play a role in preventing the development of such chronic diseases as cancer, heart disease, stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, Rheumatoid arthritis, and cataracts.

“Lemon water is in vogue. Some people start their day with lemon water instead of coffee or tea. Lemon Water is highly recommended as it is easy to make. Even the words – Lemon Water instantly makes one feel good because it is one of the best beverages for hydration. In order to reap any health benefits of lemon water, you need to drink it consistently and once you get hooked it becomes a habit that rewards you with good health. When making lemon water, always use fresh lemons. To make lemon water, squeeze half a lemon into warm or cold water. To make the drink as healthy as possible, use filtered water and organic lemons.

You can also add slices of other fresh citrus fruits such as limes and oranges. Having lemon ice cubes on hand is a great way to add lemon to your water fast. Simply squeeze fresh lemon juice into ice cube trays and freeze. Drop a few cubes into a glass of cold or hot water as needed. You can start your morning with a mug of lemon water, and keep a pitcher of water infused with a few sliced lemons in your refrigerator to drink throughout the day,” said. Hapuarachchi.

‘Nothing in excess’ is an adage that is actually quite true. Common caffeine withdrawal symptoms include headache, fatigue, irritability, trouble concentrating and depression. These have been observed. The flavonoids within the lemon juice are said to contain antioxidants, which is why lemons are useful in treating so many ailments and conditions.

“We are told that eating certain fruits can add a load of potassium into your system. In addition to vitamin C, lemons offer 80 milligrams of this mineral that helps your body stay strong and fit. They say that drinking lemon juice can also bring your fever down,” added Hapuarachchi.

In her research Hapuarachchi has discovered that the Lemon leaf has sedative and antispasmodic properties. The lemon leaves can be used to treat nerve disorders like insomnia, nervousness and palpitation.

“I have read certain articles that provide details when it comes to treating these disorders through the leaves. You have to soak five to seven leaves of lemon in a teacup of hot water and allow it to infuse for 15 minutes and take this infusion twice daily for at least one month because these disorders cannot be treated in overnight. The lemon leaf will serve as a good and better alternative to Valium and other synthetic sedatives, which by the way, have side effects. To get maximum result from lemon leaf, take the preparation daily for at least one month. Do not expect that your insomnia or nervousness will disappear overnight,” pointed out Hapuarachchi.



Lemon water is generally safe to drink, but there are a few potential side effects to be aware of. Lemon contains citric acid, which may erode tooth enamel. To limit the risk, drink lemon water through a straw, and rinse your mouth with plain water afterwards. When it comes to heartburn, lemon water can go either way. The citric acid may cause heartburn in some people. Others experience relief from heartburn, as lemon juice becomes alkaline, reducing acidity in digestion.



Prevents Cancer

Lemon is well-known for its richness in multipurpose flavonoid compounds which defend your body against different types of cancer. Thus, regular consumption of lemon juice ensures the prevention of cancerous cells.

Digestive Problems

Lemon juice is a drink for people who are suffering from digestive problems like diarrhea or constipation.

Good for Liver

One of the main advantages of lemon juice is its assistance in improving the liver function and flushing out the toxins from the body.

Good for the skin

Direct application of lemon juice combined with honey is the best way to get rid of dark spots, skin discoloration and stretch marks. Massaging your nails with a bit of lemon juice is the best remedy to make them bright and full of life.

Reduces weight

The high amount of pectin fiber in this juice benefits your body’s fight against hunger cravings.

(10 Best Benefits of Lemon Juice for Skin, Hair and Health)


HEALTH BENEFITS OF LEMON WATER (Provided by Dr. Hapuarachchi)

It promotes hydration

Water is the best beverage for hydration. Adding lemon enhances the water’s flavor, which may help you drink more.

It’s a good source of vitamin C

Citrus fruits like lemons are high in vitamin C, a primary antioxidant that helps protect cells from damaging free radicals. Vitamin C may reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke, and lower blood pressure. According to reliable sources the juice of one lemon provides about 18.6 milligrams of vitamin C.

It supports weight loss

Evidence is strong that lemon water supports weight loss. Whether this is due to people simply drinking more water and feeling full or the lemon juice itself is unclear.

It improves your skin quality

Vitamin C found in lemons may help reduce skin wrinkling, dry skin from aging, and damage from the sun. How water improves skin is debated, but one thing is certain, if your skin loses moisture, it becomes dry and prone to wrinkles.

It aids digestion

Some people drink lemon water as a daily morning laxative to help prevent constipation. Drinking warm or hot lemon water when you wake up may help get your digestive system moving.

It refreshes breath

You might avoid bad breath by drinking a glass of lemon water after meals and first thing in the morning. Lemon is thought to stimulate saliva and water also helps prevent a dry mouth, which can lead to bad breath caused by bacteria.

It helps prevent kidney stones

The citric acid in lemons may help prevent kidney stones. Citrate, a component of citric acid, paradoxically makes urine less acidic and may even break up small stones. Drinking lemon water not only give you citrate, but also the water you need to help prevent or flush out stones.

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