Lemon water has gained popularity as a health trend on social media, with claims that it promotes various health benefits such as weight loss, improved skin, digestion, and balanced pH levels. To shed light on this trend, we reached out to experts to explore the real benefits and potential drawbacks of this citrus-infused concoction.
“Drinking lemon water is currently being encouraged by several social media influencers,” said April Wiles, a registered dietitian from North Carolina and owner of thegenxdietitian.com. She noted that while some claims about lemon water are evidence-based, others may not be supported by scientific research.
One of the benefits of lemon water is its high vitamin C content. Emily Tills, a registered dietitian nutritionist based in Syracuse, New York, highlighted that vitamin C in lemons can boost overall immunity, making it particularly beneficial during cold and flu seasons. Additionally, lemons can add microminerals to water, enhancing hydration, which is crucial during colder months.
However, experts also advise caution when consuming lemon water, as its acidity can potentially wear away tooth enamel, leading to tooth sensitivities. While lemons are a source of vitamin C, they contain only small amounts of it. Nevertheless, vitamin C plays a vital role in supporting brain, skin, heart, bone, and immune system health.
Another positive aspect of lemon water is its ability to promote hydration. Many people do not drink enough water, and a splash of lemon juice can make water more enjoyable, encouraging adequate hydration. For those looking for a sweeter alternative, the experts recommend adding a touch of stevia or monk fruit as natural sweeteners.
Rachael Richardson, a registered dietitian nutritionist from Raleigh, North Carolina, suggests experimenting with other flavors like fresh basil or mint in water or brewing ginger, turmeric, or green tea to create anti-inflammatory electrolyte water. She also emphasizes the importance of choosing real mineral water that isn’t stored in plastic for the healthiest water possible.
Regarding the frequency of drinking lemon water, experts advise moderation. Excessive consumption can lead to dental issues or sensitivity to citrus fruits. It’s important to vary the fruits, herbs, or roots used to flavor water and avoid making any single healthy habit a permanent fixture.
Furthermore, there is a warning against the trend of blending and drinking pulverized lemon skin, which has been popularized on platforms like TikTok and Instagram. Lemon peels contain natural plant pesticides designed to protect the fruit’s interior, and their consumption may lead to inflammation and kidney problems for some individuals. Instead, experts recommend using lemon peel as an air freshener or cleaner.
In conclusion, while lemon water may not fulfill all the health claims surrounding it, it can still be a part of a healthy diet. Moderation and awareness of potential side effects are essential when considering its inclusion in your daily routine. As with any dietary choice, it’s best to consult with a healthcare professional if you have specific concerns or health conditions.