It's Day 7 of my 21 Day Lemon Water Challenge.
In coming up to the end of the first week I wanted to take a moment to reflect.
Initially what had blown me away was the sheer number of people who wanted to get involved in the challenge, who wanted to think outside the box, to change things up in their daily routine, to empower themselves and embrace the challenge with an open mind.
Those things mean so much to me, and now simply judging by the engagement and positivity i've received in comments each day throughout the week, it's reinforces my belief that small changes can indeed make such a difference to health and wellness both physically and mentally. I can almost see the mind shift happening for people as the days go by and i'm grateful to be a part of the process and for listening to my intuition (it was purely an idea on a whim to create the event) and creating this space for accountability and inspiration.
So what have I learned myself?
Actually a lot. More than I expected through a practice that i'd been following for a good few years now, though i'd only increased to a litre in the last 6 months or so.
I'm a sucker for a routine and typically upon waking I go downstairs boil the kettle and I squeeze my lemon into a huge mug then fill half with cold and half with boiling water. Then I drink another mug full just like the first over the course of the next 15 minutes. I'd be doing that for months.
But in listening to my 'challengers' ask questions and share their experiments, it inspired me to question myself... why not add some mint, ginger or cucumber? Why not try infusing over night and drink at room temperature in the morning?
For the last couple of mornings I have been drinking my lemon water at room temperature (with a smidge of hot added to make it luke warm as it sits easier in my tummy that way) and I love it! I make a litre jug the night before with a mix of 1 lemon, maybe some lime, ginger or mint and cucumber slices. In the morning it is nicely 'muddled' (cocktail lingo!) and actually almost feels like pouring myself a cocktail! This creates a totally different experience.
I woud encourage everyone who is used to drinking lemon water, regardless of whether you love your current routine or not... simply to try changing it up a bit. A change is always a good reboot for the system and the mind.
Here are some great additions to your lemon water and a quick outline as to why they are so beneficial. Obviously the pure ands simple lemon water itself is the key principle and these are a just an optional bonus!
Lemon: A glass of lemon juice contains less than 25 calories. It is a rich source of nutrients like calcium, potassium, vitamin C and pectin fiber. It also has medicinal values and antibacterial properties. It also contains traces of iron and vitamin A. It assists with digestion, flushing out toxins and restores Ph balance within the body.
Lime: The health benefits of lime include weight loss, skin care, improved digestion, relief from constipation, eye care, and treatment of scurvy, piles, peptic ulcer, respiratory disorders, gout, gums, urinary disorders, etc. Lime juices and oils are exceptionally beneficial to the skin. Lime juice, consumed orally, or lime oil, applied topically, rejuvenate skin
Ginger: Most frequently used to aid digestion, ginger is believed to increase saliva and other digestive fluids, alleviating indigestion and associated problems such as flatulence.It is known to relieve nausea and sickness. Ginger is believed to have anti-inflammatory qualities that may relieve swelling and pain. As a tea it is said to ease headaches and sore throats or assist if you have a cold or flu. Fresh ginger is used for asthma, coughs, colic, heart palpitations, swellings, dyspepsia, loss of appetite and rheumatism, while the dried root is used to "strengthen" the stomach, inhibit vomiting and treat diarrhoea.
Mint: Mint plants contain an antioxidant known as rosmarinic acid, which has been studied for its effectiveness in relieving seasonal allergy symptoms. Mint contains menthol, which is a natural decongestant that helps to break up phlegm and mucus. Mint can also be effective, especially when combined with tea for relieving sore throats. Mint is a calming and soothing herb that has been used for thousands of years to aid with upset stomach or indigestion. Mint is thought to improve the flow of bile through the stomach, which helps to speed and ease digestion.
Cucumber: Not only is cucumber water refreshing and hydrating, but it’s loaded with nutrients. Cucumbers are high in Vitamin C and caffeic acid, two antioxidants that can help protect your skin from sun damage throughout the summer. Vitamin C also boosts collagen and elastin to help keep your skin looking vibrant and youthful. Plus, cucumbers have natural anti-inflammatory properties that prevent water retention, and silica to promote healthy connective tissues.
Cayenne pepper: Cayenne stimulates digestion and muscle movement in the intestines, which helps restore deficient digestive secretions and aids absorption of food nutrients. Cayenne also stimulates circulation and blood flow to the peripheral areas of the body. Because it stimulates digestion and circulation, cayenne is often added to a wide variety of herbal remedies; it improves the absorption and circulation of the other herbs throughout the body.
Apple cider vinegar: ACV has anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-viral properties. Among the ailments it’s said to cure are allergies, acne, high cholesterol, joint pain, weight loss, rheumatism, arthritis, gout, dandruff, chronic fatique, candida, sore throat, gum infection, sinus infection, flu, acid reflux, leg cramps and ear infections. It’s also used to help dissolve kidney stones, lower high blood pressure, and it’s also been shown to help with type 2 diabetes by improving insulin sensitivity. Even though vinegar is acidic, when we take apple cider vinegar it has an alkaline effect in our bodies.
Turmeric: The wide range of turmeric health benefits come mainly from its main ingredient, curcumin. This component of turmeric is highly therapeutic used mainly because of its immunity boosting and anti-oxidant properties. Turmeric has been used for many thousands of years in Chinese and Indian Ayurvedic medicine for conditions including heartburn, diarrhoea, stomach bloating, colds, fibromyalgia and depression.
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