• LaurenWallace

The Benefits of Lemon Water: Detox Your Body & Skin

Updated: 3 days ago

By Rachael Link, MS, RD

July 20, 2018

Original article and page course found here.

What drink is insanely inexpensive to make, keeps skin glowing, aids in digestion, can help you lose weight and is packed with vitamin C? No, it’s not an elixir sold on late-night infomercials. It’s lemon water, and there are a long list of benefits of lemon water that should make you consider adding it to your daily routine.

While those in the know have been chugging down the citrus-flavored water for ages, some lemon water benefits have just begun making the rounds on the health and fitness circuit in recent months, including for those on the vegan, Paleo or keto diet plan. But is lemon water really the cure-all it’s purported to be or just another health fad? Let’s dig in.

What Is Lemon Water?

Simply put, lemon water is a beverage made by combining water with lemon juice. Other optional ingredients can also be added to tailor your lemon water to your personal preferences, such as ginger, cucumber, strawberry or mint.

In recent years, lemon water has gained widespread popularity among health-conscious consumers looking for a simple way to reap the health benefits of lemons. It has also become a popular choice among dieters, as it can bump up the flavor of regular water while providing less calories than sugar-sweetened beverages like soda or commercial fruit juice.

So what are the benefits of lemon water, and should you consider adding it to your diet? Research has unearthed a multitude of benefits of drinking lemon water for weight loss, immune health, energy levels and more. Here’s what you need to know about the benefits of lemon water.


1. Aids in Digestion and Detoxification

Because lemon juice’s atomic structure is similar to the digestive juices found in the stomach, it tricks the liver into producing bile, which helps keep food moving through your body and gastrointestinal tract smoothly. In animal studies, the citric acid found in lemon water has also been shown to protect liver function and prevent oxidative damage, helping preserve the liver’s natural ability to detoxify. (1)

Drinking lemon water can also help keep you hydrated to promote regularity, make you feel less bloated, relieve constipation and allow your body to naturally detoxify. Lemon water also acts as a mild diuretic, meaning you might find yourself using the bathroom more often after you start drinking lemon water. However, this can actually be beneficial and can help the urinary tract effectively clear out any unwanted elements. (2)

2. Keeps Skin Glowing

The antioxidants found in vitamin C do double duty in lemon water and provide a whole host of cold lemon water benefits for skin. They fight free radical damage, keeping your skin looking fresh and helping slow down the aging process. (3) Getting enough vitamin C from your lemon water also keeps the body producing collagen, which is essential in smoothing out fine lines in the face. In one recent study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, regularly consuming vitamin C led to younger-looking skin and less wrinkles. (4)

3. Promotes Weight Loss

Staying well-hydrated is absolutely crucial to any weight loss diet. Studies show that drinking water with a meal can reduce feelings of hunger while increasing satiety to curb cravings and cut down on your intake. (5) In fact, one study published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association actually found that drinking 17 ounces of water before breakfast slashed the number of calories consumed by a whopping 13 percent! (6)

Swapping your soda, fruit juice or energy drinks for a glass of lemon water can not only help keep you hydrated, but it can also significantly decrease caloric intake and speed up weight loss. It also adds a zip of flavor to regular water, making it much more palatable and easier to meet your hydration needs.

4. Boosts Energy and Mood

Go ahead and skip that morning cup of coffee; one of the best benefits of lemon water in the morning is that it can effectively boost energy levels without the caffeine crash. Here’s how it works: Our bodies get energy from the atoms and molecules in foods. When negatively charged ions, like those found in lemons, enter your digestive tract, the result is a natural increase in energy levels. (7)

Additionally, just the scent of a lemon has been found to reduce stress levels and help improve mood. (8) Don’t forget to offer a glass to grumpy co-workers or family members.

5. Enhances Immunity

Vitamin C is an essential nutrient that plays a central role in many different aspects of health, but it’s especially important when it comes to immunity. According to one review out of Switzerland, getting enough vitamin C can help decrease the severity and duration of respiratory infections like the common cold. It may also help improve the outcomes for conditions like malaria, diarrhea and pneumonia as well. (9)

Lemons are jam-packed with vitamin C, and adding lemon water to your daily routine is one of the best ways to take advantage of the many immune-boosting benefits of lemon water. But don’t just begin drinking it when you start coming down with a case of the sniffles; instead, add it to your daily diet when you’re feeling healthy to ward off infections before symptoms even start.

6. Prevents Kidney Stones

Kidney stones are a common condition caused by the formation of small, hard deposits in the kidneys, causing kidney stone symptoms like back and abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, and blood in the urine. Luckily, lemons are loaded with citric acid, which can increase urine volume to help fight off kidney stones.

One study conducted at Duke University Medical Center treated patients with lemonade therapy for four years and found that kidney stone formation plummeted from nearly one kidney stone per year down to just 0.13 per year. (10) Drinking enough water can also help promote proper hydration to flush out kidney stones and provide fast relief.

Related: Alkaline Water: Beneficial or All Hype?


Lemons are loaded with health benefits, and they’re considered a great vitamin C food source. In fact, just one cup of fresh lemon juice provides 187 percent of your daily recommended serving of vitamin C — take that, oranges! Lemon juice also offers up a healthy serving of potassium, magnesium and