There has been a lot of talk about the benefits of drinking “lemon water” – that is, water with some fresh lemon juice
squeezed into it. We found a nice blog which lists 5 Reasons To Drink Lemon Juice In The Morning!
So, what is all the fuss about with this lemon water thing that everyone is doing all of a sudden?
The most common thing you will hear is that despite being acidic, lemon juice is alkalinizing or “alkaline forming” and cleansing for the system – and that in an alkaline system, diseases such as cancer cannot proliferate. That’s the simplified theory, anyway – and I’m sure that the part about cancer remains “unproven”.
For those who don’t fully understand what “alkalinizing” means, here’s a brief not-too-technical explanation: Acidity and its opposite, alkalinity, are measured on a scale called the pH scale. (It is supposed to be written that way, with the small p and the capital H.) The lowest pH theoretically possible is 0 – for example concentrated hydrochloric acid solution has a pH of 0. The highest pH possible is 14, for example concentrated sodium hydroxide solution. Pure distilled water is pH7 – and anything below 7 is said to be “acidic”. Anything above 7 is said to be “alkaline”. Lemon juice, when pure, has a pH of around 2.2 to 2.4, depending on ripeness – however the more diluted it is, the more the pH shifts towards 7.
Something that is alkalinizing is something that causes the pH of the environment in which it resides to increase. Where it gets really interesting – and a little more complex – is when we realize that the actual acid content of the food doesn’t determine per se whether or not it’s acid-forming or alkaline-forming after the body metabolizes it! And it just so happens that lemons are highly alkaline-forming.
Lemon water is considered by many to be a magnificent “detox drink” and it is one of the things that is served when you visit the spa. It’s good to stay hydrated, especially at the sauna or during typical bodywork practices such as massage… and the lemon water is thought to assist with removal of toxins, in addition to supporting vital organs such as the liver, kidneys and gall bladder. It’s thought that lemon water will flush and cleanse the system – especially when taken first thing upon waking.
Note that other citrus fruits (and other fruits) are considered beneficial in water also. Oranges, grapefruit, lime and other citrus are alkalinizing, though not as strongly as lemons.
Another interesting thing to be aware of is that refined sugars are acid-forming in the body and are reported to create conditions which are preferable to pathogens. So let’s dump the sugar drinks! I did this several years ago and have never looked back! If you’re really into your detox waters, you might also want to check out this post where we featured a more “advanced” detox water with a few ingredients.