I think we all know that old wives tale ‘an apple a day keeps the doctor away’ but for me, the juice of a whole lemon squeezed into a mug of hot water every morning is my 21st century version!
Other than Vitamin C, lemons have heaps of benefits. As well as being refreshing in a cold soda water on a hot day, they are also very good for your digestion and fat burning. As you know, lemon is acidic as is our stomach. However, when the lemon and the stomach acids meet they become ‘alkaline’. I heard this somewhere along the way and first tried this because I wanted to cut down on the amount of coffee I was drinking but since I noticed benefits immediately -mainly feeling less sluggish in the mornings- I wanted to know more!
Alkalinity or ‘alkalising your system’, is based on the theory of keeping our bodies at an optimal pH level. This has essentially come from the fact that our busy Western lifestyles have too much acidity in them. We are drinking too much coffee (hmm I wonder why?!) , eating too much red meat, too many “sugary” and processed things as well as us all being the most stressed we have ever been.
I knew I didn’t eat ‘badly’ per se, but I did often wake with that sluggish feeling, needing a coffee to get me going. Perhaps I just wasn’t a morning person I thought? Nope, I was wrong. So began the research on what did and didn’t make my body alkaline. After a bit of research I met the most fabulous and inspiring woman called Dr Libby (drlibby.co.nz) who explained to me that there is a way of eating which can make an enormous difference to your waistline and how you feel. As Dr Libby explains it: “When our body is in an alkaline state, we happily burn body fat as one of the reasons we store it is to protect our tissues from damage from acidic conditions. When your blood and tissues ‘burn’ or are too acidic, we tend to hang on to our body fat as a way to protect our blood vessels and vital tissues from damage.”
So, what can we all do to get our bodies into more of an alkaline state? For me, starting with the juice of a whole lemon in hot water in the morning is a must. I travel with them when I can, as well as my trusty lemon squeezer (and pip catcher!) and if I’m flying somewhere when you can’t take them with you, I try to always go for a walk once I have arrived seem to be able to find a lemon at the local shops. Most hotels always have a kettle! The lemon also helps wake up your stomach and get your digestion working so when you do have breakfast your body will be able to digest it properly.
It’s a little bit zingy the first time you try it, you could have half a tea-spoon of honey until you get used to it, but for me now, nothing will do other than my ‘lemon tea’!