Lemons, aka Citrus Limon, are a health and beauty powerhouse. Different varieties of sour lemons, like Eureka and Lisbon, along with the sweeter (and more orange in color) Meyer lemon, all contain roughly the same amount of nutrients. The juice of an average sized lemon (just over 2 ounces) contains 40% of the daily recommended allowance of vitamin C for an adult woman.
Lemons are affordable, available year round and offer so much more than a road side sales opportunity for the 9 and under crowd. Here’s just a sample of what they can do for you.
- Help curb cravings: lemons contain pectin, a natural soluble fiber which absorbs and helps the body eliminate stored fat, pectin also slows the digestive process so you feel full after eating less food
- Neutralize free radicals in the body (think anti aging and cancer fighting)
- Reduce inflammation and swelling
- Balance pH levels in the body
- Improve digestive function
- Detoxify the liver and cleanse the urinary tract
- Strengthen immune function (great for cold and flu prevention)
- Reduce symptoms of some types of arthritis
- Restores skin elasticity
- Helps lower bad cholesterol and raise good
- Contains both lutein and zeaxanthin, the dynamic eye health duo
- Oxygenates the blood (energizes) and also acts as asleep aid
- Restorative as an essential oil, add a few drops to your bath, massage oil or body moisturizer
- Helps correct dark spots on the skin: dab lemon juice onto dark spots with a cotton ball or swab (always do a patch test on a non sensitive area of your skin first)
- Acts as an astringent on your skin: can use either straight lemon juice or mix a 1:1 solution with filtered water (again, do a patch test first)
Easy ways to add more lemon to detox, energize and improve your health:
As a restorative tea: Warm water with ½ squeezed fresh lemon in the morning or afternoon –
hydrates, calms and restores at the same time. Juicing: Add ½ - 1 lemon to your green juice recipes to improve both the nutritional benefit and the flavor. Note: lemon peel contains oxalates which in rare cases can inhibit the absorption of certain medications or interfere with calcium absorption. While this is very uncommon, if you are taking medication, check with your doctor before using lemon peel in juices or just avoid it all together.
In recipes: Add the juice of ½ lemon to salads, dips, pestos and soups. With a pinch of flaky sea salt, and some coarse ground pepper, lemon takes raw salads greens like spinach, arugula and watercress to a whole new level of freshness. The zest of a lemon can be added to pasta, rice or grain dishes Tip:.Adding a squirt of lemon (or lime) to sliced apples or avocados will keep them from browning.
Lemons in your lifestyle: In Feng Shui traditions, 9 lemons (real ones, please) are put in a wooden bowl and placed in the center of the kitchen or main living space to create a healthy, balanced and “clean” energy flow to your home and your life.
Organic or conventional? Most of the pesticide residue and any added waxy coating (used to reduce bruising) in non organic, aka conventional lemons, is concentrated in the peel. If you are going to zest or juice the skin of your lemons, buy organic.