When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.
Even though summer is here with a full-on heat blast and you find yourself making all kinds of lemonade, it’s not the only thing you can do with lemons. This tangy citrus is nothing short of a superfood.
Not only can this juicy and flavorful fruit be used to enhance your culinary skills, but you can also easily use lemon for various health benefits.
Lemons are chock-full of vitamin C and contain citric acid, folates, flavonoids, and minerals like potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, calcium and iron. In fact, a single lemon can provide one-third of your daily requirement of vitamin C. (1)
- Various Health Benefits of Lemon
- Method 1: Detoxing Agent
- Method 2: Kidney Stone Removal
- Method 3: Natural Decongestant
- Method 4: Instant Constipation Relief
- Method 5: Erase Acne Scars
- Method 6: Metabolism and Immunity Booster
- Method 7: Beat Bad Breath
- Method 8: Relief from Gout
- Tips for using lemon for its health benefits
Various Health Benefits of Lemon
Lately, the entire world seems to have jumped on the lemon-water bandwagon, owing to its positive effects on healthy weight loss. Read on to find out what else lemons can be used for in terms of health applications.
Here are nine easy ways to use lemons for various health benefits.
Method 1: Detoxing Agent
Being high in vitamin C and antioxidants, lemon also protects the body from free-radical damage at a cellular level.
The mild diuretic properties of lemon increase the production of urine, which allows more toxins to be expelled through urine faster. This aids the purification of blood and promotes healthy and glowing skin from within.
Things you’ll need:
- Lemon juice (detoxifying agent) – 1 teaspoon
- Honey (improves taste, promotes healing) – 1 teaspoon
- Warm water – 1 cup
Step 1. Add lemon and honey to water
- Pour 1 teaspoon each of lemon juice and honey into 1 cup of warm water.
Step 2. Mix and consume the lemon-honey drink daily
- Stir it to mix the ingredients together.
- Consume this drink every morning on an empty stomach. You can also drink lemon-honey water in the evening. Be sure not to take it after a full meal.
- Stay on this lemon drink detox for 1 month to observe positive results in your body.
Method 2: Kidney Stone Removal
The citric acid content in lemons helps break down calcium oxalate stones in the kidneys, so the broken down stones can be passed out of the body through urine. Lemon also acts as a mild natural diuretic that will facilitate frequent urination to expel the stones. (3)
Olive oil provides lubrication and allows the fragmented kidney stones to pass swiftly without much pain.
For best results, drink copious amounts of water along with this remedy to promote urination, while also keeping you hydrated.
Things you’ll need:
- Lemon juice (disintegrates kidney stones) – ¼ cup
- Olive oil (lubricates the urinary tract for easy expulsion) – ¼ cup
Step 1. Combine lemon juice and olive oil
- Pour ¼ cup each of olive oil and lemon juice into a glass.
Step 2. Mix and drink it 2 or 3 times daily
- Stir the ingredients to mix them well.
- Consume this drink, preferably on an empty stomach to prevent nausea. If you’re unable to consume all of it at one time, drink half of it immediately and the remaining half after about 15 minutes.
- Drink 2 to 3 cups of water after each dose. Set your daily water intake at between 2 and 3 quarts.
- Repeat this remedy 2 or 3 times daily for a few days or until the kidney stones get expelled.
Method 3: Natural Decongestant
The high vitamin C in the lemon will boost your immunity, while honey will soothe the irritated respiratory tract and promote healing.
Things you’ll need:
- Lemon juice (decongestant) – 2 tablespoons
- Honey (soothing and promotes healing) – 1 tablespoon
Step 1. Combine honey and lemon juice
- Pour 1 tablespoon of good quality raw honey into a small bowl.
- Pour in 2 tablespoons of lemon juice.
Step 2. Mix and consume 3 times a day
- Stir to blend the ingredients well.
- Drink the concoction 3 times a day to get rid of congestion.
- Continue with the remedy for a few days or until your symptoms clear up.
Method 4: Instant Constipation Relief
Lemon juice mixed in lukewarm water can do wonders for a constipated system. If your bowel movements are too few and far in between, consuming warm lemon water can help move the contents of your intestines forward. (5)
Lemon relieves constipation and alleviates related digestive troubles by dislodging the undigested matter stuck to the lining of the digestive tract and flushing the toxins and waste out of your system.
Single-Step Treatment: Mix lemon juice into warm water & drink it twice daily
- Squeeze the juice from half of a lemon into 1 cup of warm water.
- Stir to mix the ingredients thoroughly.
- Drink warm lemon water twice a day – before going to bed at night and first thing in the morning on an empty stomach.
- If you have minor constipation, this remedy should stimulate bowel movements after just 1 or 2 doses.
- Continue using this remedy every day for 1 week to bring your digestive system back on the track. Incorporating lemon water in your lifestyle can also help you battle chronic constipation.
Method 5: Erase Acne Scars
Lemon juice is a natural skin bleaching agent that can be used to fade acne scars with regular topical applications. Plus, the vitamin C content in lemon boosts collagen production, which helps maintain smooth and firm skin. (6)
Depending upon your individual needs, lemon juice can be used in different ways.
#Using Plain Lemon Juice
Single-Step Treatment: Apply lemon juice on the acne scars daily
- Squeeze out some fresh lemon juice. You can also use bottled lemon juice concentrate for this remedy.
- Use a sterile cotton ball to dab lemon juice on the acne scars.
- Let the juice dry naturally, but don’t leave it on your skin for more than 10 minutes.
- Rinse it off with cool water and apply a light moisturizer.
- Repeat daily for at least 1 month to fade the acne scars.
#Using Honey and Lemon
People with sensitive and dry skin should use lemon juice mixed with honey.
Honey is a natural humectant that will keep your skin hydrated and prevent the lemon juice from further drying it out. The healing properties of honey will aid in erasing acne scars, too.
Things you’ll need:
- Lemon juice, freshly squeezed (natural bleaching agent)
- Honey (natural humectant and healing properties)
Step 1. Mix honey and lemon juice in equal amounts
- Pour some freshly squeezed lemon juice into a small bowl.
- Add an equal amount of honey.
- Mix the two ingredients well.
Step 2. Apply the mixture daily to get rid of your acne scars
- Use a sterile cotton ball to apply this sticky blend on your acne scars.
- Let the lemon and honey sit for about 10 minutes.
- Wash it off with plain water and pat your skin dry with a soft towel.
- Repeat this remedy daily for at least 2 to 3 weeks to get promising results.
#Using Tomato and Lemon
Tomato and lemon is a great combo to get fast results when dealing with acne scars.
Tomato serves as a gentle and nourishing exfoliating agent that will slough off the dead skin cells. It also helps even out the skin tone and aids skin repair at the cellular level, thus fading the acne scars.
Things you’ll need:
- Lemon (natural bleaching agent)
- Tomato pulp, raw (exfoliating and toning agent)
Step 1. Mix tomato pulp and lemon juice
- Put some fresh raw tomato pulp in a bowl.
- Add an equal amount of freshly squeezed lemon juice to it.
- Mix the ingredients thoroughly.
Step 2. Apply the mixture daily to fade your acne scars
- Apply the lemon and tomato pulp mixture on your acne scars using a sterile cotton ball.
- Let the mixture dry, then wash off the dried residue with plain water.
- Repeat this remedy daily for 2 to 3 weeks to erase acne scars.
Method 6: Metabolism and Immunity Booster
Drinking delicious lemon water is a great way to boost your body’s metabolism and immune system.
Lemon water is one of the effective home remedies you can use to increase your metabolic rate and aid healthy weight loss.
Lemons contain vitamin C that aids in the biosynthesis of carnitine, which plays a key role in the metabolism of fatty acids. It also helps the body cope with a cold or the flu.
The potassium content in lemons stimulates the higher brain and nerve functioning and helps regulate blood pressure and fluids in the body.
Drinking lemon water is also an easy way to stay hydrated and keep your energy levels up throughout the day. You can also add fresh lemon juice to your tea or use it as a salad dressing and in cooking.
Single-Step Treatment: Drink lemon water every morning
- Squeeze about 1 tablespoon of juice from a fresh lemon into 1 cup of water.
- Drink this water on an empty stomach every morning to boost your metabolism and immunity.
- You can also sip on lemon water throughout the day. The flavored water will also help you increase your water intake and keep the body hydrated.
Method 7: Beat Bad Breath
Commercial mouthwashes often contain alcohol that disrupts the natural flora inside your mouth. Alcohol also dries out the mouth by reducing saliva production, which aggravates halitosis.
If your flossing and brushing regimen doesn’t banish your bad breath, a DIY lemon mouthwash can come to your aid. Lemon boosts salivation, and its citrusy aroma counters the foul odor in your mouth.
It also wards off the pungent odor of onion and garlic. (7)
This DIY mouthwash also contains cinnamon and baking soda that eliminate the odor-causing bacteria.
This honey in it will not only sweeten the taste but also boost salivation and help keep the odor-causing bacteria in check.
Things you’ll need:
- Lemon juice, freshly squeezed (boosts salivation and eliminates bad breath) – ½ lemon
- Baking soda (eliminates odor-causing bacteria) – 1 teaspoon
- Hot water (base ingredient) – 1 cup
- Cinnamon powder (eliminates odor-causing bacteria) – 1 teaspoon
- Honey (eliminates odor-causing bacteria) – 2 teaspoons
Step 1. Combine cinnamon, baking soda, honey and lemon
- Put 1 teaspoon each of cinnamon powder and baking soda into a pitcher.
- Pour 2 teaspoons of honey into it.
- Squeeze in the juice from half of a lemon.
Step 2. Mix in hot water
- Pour 1 cup of boiling hot water into the jar.
- Mix the ingredients well and let the solution cool down.
Step 3. Store in an airtight container and use it daily
- Pour your homemade lemon mouthwash into an airtight container.
- It should keep well for 1 week when refrigerated. Mix up small batches that can be used up within the week. Alternatively, you may use lemon juice concentrate instead of fresh lemon juice to extend the shelf life of the mouthwash.
- Swish a mouthful of this DIY lemon mouthwash around in your mouth for about 30 seconds, then spit it out. Rinse your mouth with water, if needed.
- Use this DIY lemon mouthwash daily to keep halitosis at bay. You can also use this mouthwash to freshen up your breath before an important event.
Method 8: Relief from Gout
The citric acid present in lemon also helps dissolve the uric acid in the blood, preventing uric acid crystals from accumulating and causing inflammation in the joints.
Single-Step Treatment: Mix lemon juice into water & drink it 3 times daily
- Squeeze out the juice from 1 lemon and add it to 1 cup of water.
- Give it a stir to mix the ingredients together.
- Drink this lemon water 3 times a day to get relief from gout.
- Repeat this remedy for 1 to 2 weeks. You may get significant relief in just a couple of days.
Tips for using lemon for its health benefits
- Always check your skin sensitivity before using lemon juice topically.
- Avoid sun exposure after topical application of lemon juice to avoid tanning.
- You can also use lime instead of lemon in the remedies.
- If you can’t stand the tart flavor of the lemon water, start with a smaller quantity of lemon juice and increase the quantity to normal proportions as you get used to the taste. You can also add honey to mask its tart flavor.
- If lemon juice doesn’t seem to agree with your body, discontinue the remedy. Talk to your holistic health care provider if you still wish to include lemon into your health care regime.
- Sir Elkhatim KA, Elagib RAA, Hassan AB. Content of phenolic compounds and vitamin C and antioxidant activity in wasted parts of Sudanese citrus fruits. Food science & nutrition. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6060895/. Published May 8, 2018.
- Kim MJ, Hwang JH, Ko HJ, Na HB, Kim JH. Lemon detox diet reduced body fat, insulin resistance, and serum hs-CRP level without hematological changes in overweight Korean women. Nutrition research (New York, N.Y.). https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25912765. Published May 2015.
- Yang P-L. The Effectiveness of Lemon Solution versus Potassium... : JBI Database of Systematic Reviews and Implementation Reports. LWW. https://journals.lww.com/jbisrir/Fulltext/2011/09481/The_Effectiveness_of_Lemon_Solution_versus.8.aspx. Published 2011.
- Hemiläc H. The effect of vitamin C on bronchoconstriction and ... Allergy, Asthma & Clinical Immunology. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4363347/. Published 2014.
- Patel S, al et. EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF PHARMACEUTICAL AND MEDICAL RESEARCH. EJPMR. https://www.ejpmr.com/home/abstract_id/220. Published 2015.
- Nasri H, Bahmani M, Shahinfard N, Moradi Nafchi A, Saberianpour S, Rafieian Kopaei M. Medicinal Plants for the Treatment of Acne Vulgaris: A Review of Recent Evidences. Jundishapur journal of microbiology. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4740760/. Published November 21, 2015.
- Munch R, Barringer SA. Deodorization of garlic breath volatiles by food and food components. Journal of food science. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24592995. Published April 2014.
- Singh JA, Shah N, Edwards NL. A cross-sectional internet-based patient survey of the management strategies for gout. BMC complementary and alternative medicine. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4774197/. Published March 1, 2016.
Summary of How to Use Lemons for Various Health Benefits
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