There are countless claims that having warm lemon water in the AM will do wonders for detoxifying your body, specifically the liver. The short answer to that is: it’s not likely. There is an antioxidant in the fruit called d-limonene, which is also found in oranges and grapefruit (the highest concentrations found in the peel). This antioxidant has been shown to activate compounds in the liver that are part of the detoxification process. However, lemon juice only contains about 1/5 of the levels that are needed to detoxify. When you nourish your body with all the healthy foods that it needs, it does a great job at detoxifying itself with out the assistance of any special water or detox. Having said that, there are several benefits to having a warm cup of lemon water in the AM.
Hydration: Having a glass of lemon water, or any water for that matter, first thing in the morning helps us jump start our day with the hydration the body needs to thrive. I tell my patients to have1-2 cups of water when they first wake up, lemon or not, to re-hydrate after a long night’s sleep.
Vitamin C: All citrus foods (lemon, lime, grapefruit, orange) are great sources of vitamin C. Having just 2 ounces of pure lemon juice in the AM will provide you will 1/2 of your vitamin C needs for the day.
Eat Less: Some studies suggest that drinking water (lemon or not) before meals leads to feeling full, which in turn will prevent overeating. (This one definitely works for me as well!)
Reduce constipation: Some research suggests that having a warm glass of water in the AM can actually stimulate the bowels to get moving, which can lead to decreased instances of constipation.
Iron: Drinking lemon water in conjunction with foods that contain iron will help promote iron absorption. If you know your iron is low and the doctor has prescribed you iron supplements, having a class of lemon water with your supplement will help your body absorb more vit C. Note: We do not recommend iron supplementation if your doctor has not diagnosed you with a deficiency.