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Lemon Water: Is It Effective?

lemon water

If you’ve ever done a simple Internet search to find natural ways to lose weight, you’ve probably stumbled upon the lemon water trend. Many celebrities, trainers, and health and wellness bloggers swear by lemon water as an effective means to lose weight fast. Because of the increase in this citrus water trend, research on whether it actually works is also increasing. Some researchers seek to find the scientific explanation on why this combination would contribute to weight loss, whereas other researchers have decided to test it out for themselves.

Other questions arise from this trend, like how does a person get on the lemon water trend? Do they use hot water or cold water? Do they put lemon juice in their beverage or a whole lemon? Like any health regime, results will vary depending on the person, their regular diet, and the amount of exercise they do. The time it takes to see results from a new routine will also vary from person to person. 

What Is Lemon Water?

two glass of lemon water

Lemon water is very much exactly as it sounds. For most people seeking to lose poundage, they prepare a glass of warm water, usually heated in a kettle, add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice to the water, mix, and drink. Some people drink this combination all day long, while others will drink it to replace an otherwise sugary or caffeinated beverage, like tea or coffee.

Depending on your ability to handle sourness you might want to start off with small amounts of lemon juice and increase it over time. Some people prefer their beverages more tart, and can add more lemon juice, or whole lemons, depending on how they like it.

Some people will even drink it cold with ice. If you’ve ever been to a restaurant and ordered water, the waiter or waitress might have asked if you would like lemon in your water. In this case, they usually bring out an ice cold glass of tap water with a small lemon wedge balancing on the edge of the glass.

It is also important to note there has been no successful research completed that suggests warm water is more beneficial than cold water. The temperature of the water is insignificant and changes none of the properties of the lemon.

How Is It Supposed to Work?

How lemon water works varies depending on who you are asking. According to some individuals, water with a dash of lemon will cleanse your digestive system and release any toxins and unwanted fat. This statement is only party true, because while lemon water can aid in weight loss, it is not responsible for all loss of weight, toxins, and fat. It is not some magic potion that by drinking it every day, will magically result in a slimmer physique.

Bloating

bloating

Lemon water is also believed to work as a natural remedy for bloating and ironically, water weight. The acid in the lemon acts as a mild, natural diuretic to aid in the reduction of bloating and thus, giving you the appearance of weight loss and a flatter stomach. Water is nature’s best laxative, and if you need something to make your water-drinking more tolerable, lemon is a great option.

Hydration

drinking lemon water

The reality of lemon water is that it hydrates your body and provides vitamin C. A well-hydrated body will naturally have better functioning organs and metabolism than a body that is dehydrated. Here, a glass of plain water will have the same benefits as a glass of warm water with lemon. Despite lemon juice not having any fat-burning properties, it can be helpful to some people who don’t like drinking plain water, or for those who drink too many unhealthy beverages throughout their day. 

Does Lemon Water Work?

So does lemon water help to lose weight? There is no simple answer to the question because of how different each person’s body is. As stated earlier, what works for one person might not work for another. The good news? There is no significant downfall to drinking lemon water. Even if it doesn’t contribute to weight loss, the body is still being healthily hydrated.

It Helps You Stay Hydrated

lemon water in glass

Some people find lemon water to be a
weight loss solution because they are using it to replace another drink in
their diet. If an individual is used to drinking a twelve-pack of soda each day
and they replace their soda with water, it is likely they will experience
weight loss by making this switch. For some people, drinking water is a burden.
They don’t like the taste, or it makes them more thirsty are common complaints
about drinking water. By adding lemon to their water, or any fruits for that
matter, they are making the beverage more palatable, and they are willing
and able to consume more of it.

Even if you are not losing weight or
seeing any noticeable results, it does not mean your time, and water, is being
wasted. Hydration is good for everybody, not just for those that want to lose
weight. Hydration has been known to prevent headaches, dry mouth, increase
fitness performance, improve ability to focus, improve skin, and also prevent
constipation.

Most professionals recommend drinking
half of your body weight (in pounds) in ounces of water each day regardless of
gender. So, for example, if you are a male or female who weighs 120 pounds, you
would divide that number in half, 60, and that is how many ounces of water you
should try to drink each day. Sixty ounces might seem like a lot to some
people, but if you drink small amounts throughout the day, those ounces will
add up fast.

Is There a Best Time to Drink Water?

drink water

There are also many opinions about
when you should drink your water. The bottom line is drinking water at any
time of day is beneficial although there are some suggestions that
might make your schedule more ideal. The first suggestion is to drink lemon water
when you first wake up. After a night of sleep, it is important to rehydrate
because it helps your body begin the natural process of flushing toxins. It
also can help you feel more alert in the mornings. Another suggestion is to
drink glasses of water throughout the day, instead of trying to make up for all
the water you didn’t drink during the day, at night.

Are There Any Potential Downfalls?

As stated earlier, there are no
significant downfalls to consuming lemon water. Because of its acidity, some people
might find their stomachs become irritated after consuming lemon. An easy
solution to this is to drink your water with a meal, or right after a meal so
that your stomach doesn’t become aggravated. It is also recommended for those
that experience heartburn or acid reflux, to consume lemon in small amounts or
not at all, because the acid in the lemon is known to worsen your symptoms.
 

Another potential downfall to be
mindful of is how the lemon might affect the enamel on your teeth. Acid is
known to wear down enamel even when drinking diluted lemon. Fortunately, there
are solutions to this. The first is to drink your beverage through a straw. The
water won’t come in direct contact with the front of your teeth, and won’t wear
the enamel as easily.

Another solution is to drink plain
water after a glass of lemon water or brush your teeth after consuming. Though
if you dislike lemon that much, consider another fruit.

Conclusion

For some, lemon water might be the
weight-loss solution they have been looking for. Maybe they spent their
lifetime searching for a beverage that gives them the satisfaction without all
the calories. For others, the citrus beverage may not have changed anything
except their frequency of trips to the bathroom.

The myth that lemon in water alone
aids in weight loss, is simply false. There is no evidence or properties
of lemon that are known to assist in fat loss. Despite what others might
have you believe, lemon water is not the magical solution to weight loss some
people swear it to be. It can, however, increase hydration.

For those who hate drinking water
because it’s boring and flavorless, lemon juice might be a great option for
people who want to add more water to their diet. Maybe you are trying to limit
the cups of hot coffee you consume daily. Drinking hot, lemony water
before your regular cup of coffee might help you feel fuller sooner, and you
might not feel the need to have that typical second and third cup of coffee. Or
maybe you live in a cold climate and drinking cold water is painful and hot
water is too boring. Lemon water is definitely worth a shot even if you’re not
trying to lose weight, you might just find that you really like
it. 

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