L is for Lemons

by Leisa on April 6, 2009

I love lemons!

The humble lemon is such a powerful healing tool in a our “food as medicine” tool-kit, and they make a wonderful addition to our diet.

Lemons are thought to be acidic but due to their high mineral content they are actually alkalising upon digestion.  Lemons are a natural antiseptic inside and out and stimulate the digestive system, kill parasites, cleanse the liver, help to dissolve gallstones, and because of their high vitamin C content lemons are supportive for the immune system, circulation and for healthy teeth and gums!

A common remedy is taking lemon juice in warm water first thing of a morning as an internal cleanse.  This stimulates digestive juices and bile production and is a well known liver tonic.  Taking lemon juice this way before meals assists in protein and fat breakdown and absorption.

Another folk remedy is one using lemons to treat high cholesterol levels and atherosclerosis. This remedy blends lemon with garlic into a paste and a tablespoon is eaten daily.

I use lemons in my green juice, making sure some of the (organic) peel and seeds are included for the limonene and citrus seed content.

Lemon is also a wonderful skin conditioner and toner, and I remember many a summer of putting a mixture of lemon juice and chamomile in my hair to bleach it blonde!

You will find many raw food recipes which contain fat and oils (for example salad dressing), also contain some lemon juice – which is very balancing for digestive purposes.  A simple squeeze of lemon over a green salad will enhance it’s taste and digsetibility also.

So we might need to change the saying to “a lemon a day keeps the doctor away!”



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5 commentsAdd comment

Jenny Dugdell April 12, 2009 at 12:17 am

Hi Leisa
It has been suggested to me to have a small amount of lemon juice in each glass of water that I have during the day to help the water get into my tissues, as my history is dehydration, and soon as I drink just plain water it seems to go straight through. As I work majority of the time by myself in an organic retail store, I can’t lock up just to go to the toilet all the time and this stops me from drinking what I need to be drinking. How much lemon juice in a litre of water or would it be better for me to have salt instead and if so how much. I have also been told that lemon juice can eat the tooth enamel. What should I do for the best?

Carolyn Packard April 14, 2009 at 12:12 am

Would love to know the answer to this too

Carolyn Packard April 14, 2009 at 12:16 am

Another question…it has always bothered me that if one is to eat only raw fruit and veg, do you consume more chemicals as I know growers use many toxic chemicals and you can’t always find a variety of organically grown food?

Leisa April 25, 2009 at 1:52 am

Hi Jenny,
If water is going straight through and not hydrating you, then it is often an imbalance in the hormones that regulate fluid balance such as aldosterone and renin from the adrenal glands. If there is some level of adrenal fatigue, then you can have what is called “salt wasting” through the kidneys, which means you excrete too much sodium in the urine, and water follows salt, so you can end up dehydrated. The first thing to check would be your adrenal glands (which I think you are already doing which is great!) and then look at the sodium and potassium ratio’s in the blood – although they will only be out if there is a major imbalance. I usually check all of this out first and most of the time adding 1/4 teaspoon of Himalayan Salt to a big glass of water a couple of times a day helps with hydration. This is especially useful if there is low blood pressure (dizziness on standing up quickly, fainting, nausea). By supporting the adrenal glands you can bring this problem back into balance and not need the extra salt after some time. However it can be important while the adrenal glands are healing. A great book on this subject is “Adrenal Fatigue, The 21st Century Stress Syndrome” by James L. Wilson. In more severe adrenal fatigue and dehydration he recommends 1/4 teaspoon of salt in every glass of water during the day! Another book is “The Body’s Many Cries For Water” by Dr. Batmangheldi
Lemon juice is not used especially for dehydration, but more for liver cleansing and for stimulating stomach acid production for better digestion.
I hope this helps!

Leisa April 25, 2009 at 1:54 am

Hi Carolyn,
Good to hear from you! Of course it is always best to use organic wherever you can because of this problem, but if you can only get conventionally grown produce, then soaking it in water with a natural vegetable wash (you can get one from most health food stores) will remove a lot of it. Just washing in water won’t do the job as most pesticides are fat soluble and need some type of soap to help in the removal. Many pesticides are also in the skin or peel of the fruit and veg, so peeling this type of produce may help. Organically grown don’t peel though.

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