5 Reasons You Should Drink Lemon Water Every Day

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I'm a Certified Health Coach, longtime blogger, and host of Elizabeth Eats on YouTube. In addition to writing recipes (I love to eat!), I'm a strong believer that life is too short to settle for anything less than living your best life.


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How to make lemon water

Sipping lemon water is one of the most simple ways to boost your health.

Not only is it delicious and incredibly good for you, but it’s also easy to make and relatively inexpensive to make. See the recipe below.

Here are the Top 5 Reasons You Should Drink Lemon Water Every Day

1. Lemon water alkalizes your body (aka balances your pH).

While very acidic on their own, lemons have a very alkalizing effect on the body. Why is pH so important? It’s simple, cancer cells can’t grow in an alkaline environment. Keeping your body slightly alkaline by consuming alkalizing foods is extremely important to your overall health. (So is limiting acid-forming foods like dairy, animal proteins and high amounts of processed sugar.)

2. Lemon water boosts your immune system.

The high amounts of vitamin C, potassium and folate will boost your immune system and keep your body healthy. No more colds or sinus issues for you this Fall! Both the natural phytonutrients and gut-healing properties of this drink will give your immune system an extra boost.

Bonus: lemons are also high in lutein and zeaxanthin to keep your eyes healthy.

lemon water is healthy

3. Lemon water is a natural diuretic (aka makes you pee & keeps the bloat off).

This is a great reason to start your day with a large mug of warm lemon water: the diuretic effect helps detox your body to start your day off right. Since it’s a light, natural diuretic, it won’t dehydrate you as prescription diuretics can. In fact, the water and nature hydration of the lemon juice will improve your hydration while also giving you a very gentle diuretic effect to ease bloat.

4. Lemon water aids digestion.

If you ever experience indigestion, grumbling in your belly or digestion issues in general, sipping warm lemon water 10-15 minutes before you eat will help enzyme production in your gut and aid in digestion.

Even better, it also helps your digestion function properly, which can have gut-healing effects over the longterm.

5. Lemon water makes your skin pretty.

Supercharged with Vitamin C and tons of nutrients, regularly sipping warm lemon water will make your skin glow. Try it for a week and see for yourself.

Extra tip: Try my Ultimate Beauty Smoothie Recipe for even more hydration and a skin boost.

Why do I need a fresh lemon?

Trust me, if bottled lemon juice worked the same I’d say go for it! It just doesn’t. Bottled lemon juice has been pasteurized (heated to a high temperature) which kills most of the enzymes and nutrients. It’s also usually simply a mixture of water and citric acid with a little lemon flavor or very little lemon juice. If you want the natural healing benefits of this drink, you need to use a real lemon.

No Lemon? No Problem! Use a Lime Instead

Limes are also loaded with very similar properties to lemons, plus they taste great. Making your warm water with lime juice occasionally is a great way to mix things up.

lemon and lime water

How to Make Lemon Water

Fill a 12-15 ounce mug filled with warm (but not boiling) water and add the juice of 1/2 a lemon. Always use a fresh lemon; never use bottled lemon juice. Organic lemons are best if you have access to them. If not, wash your lemon well before cutting into it. Also, boiling water will kill the nutrients in the lemon, you want warm water, not boiling hot. Bring your water to a boil and let it cool 3-5 minutes in the mug before adding the lemon. Room temperature water is also OK. Optional if desired: add a dash of organic cayenne pepper to boost your metabolism and further increase your digestive enzyme production. Sip each morning to enjoy the health benefits listed above.

Is lemon water healthy

Why Should I Drink This in the Morning?

As I mentioned above, warm lemon water gets your digestion going which is a great thing to do right when you wake up. It also rehydrates your body after you sleep (we loose so much hydration from simply breathing as we sleep!). Starting your day off hydrated with your digestive enzymes ready to go is a great way to improve your health. You can also sip this any time of day for extra benefits.

A small note of caution: since lemon water is acidic, be mindful of your tooth enamel. Every morning or once a day is great. If you drink it more often, you may want to rinse your mouth with plain water or brush your teeth to ensure lemon juice isn’t just sitting on your teeth all day.

More Ways to Boost Your Health:



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  1. Stuart Fraser says:

    You don’t agree with taking bottled lemon juice against natural lemons
    fair enough but with the price of natural lemons these days it would cost
    you a fortune especially if you are taking lemon juice on a daily basis as I
    do, at our local Tesco a single lemon costs 30p to take them every day
    would run at about £100 odds every year, whereas bottled lemon juice
    can cost around 0.75p a bottle and the brand I buy is called Pride, now
    as far as I can see all it contains is concentrated lemon juice and preservative
    potassium metabisulphite, any harm in that, please advise.

  2. Beca says:

    If you do not have access to fresh lemons, is there any benefit to trying this with bottled?

  3. Kerry White says:

    ” (we loose so much hydration…” Loose rhymes with GOOSE not OOZE – Everytime I see this I wonder why no hires me for Proofreading and I comment.

  4. Brad says:

    There has been numerous human clinical trials on the effects of Lemon juice on inflammatory conditions such as gout. A 2015 study found that lemon juice aids in the body’s synthesis of calcium carbonate. It converts uric acid to water by forming a bond with it. This lessens the acidity of your blood and brings down the body’s uric acid levels. And Richard Branson drinks lemon water every day and if its good enough for Richard… beatgout.org/is-lemon-good-for-gout/

  5. Chris says:

    Is there any reasons why you shouldn’t drink lemon water? I take a blood pressure tablet every morning with cold water then drink lemon water is this OK?

    • Hi Chris, I can’t think of a reason why not, however, I’m not a medical doctor or pharmacist. I would suggest asking the pharmacist about this — they are the experts in what you can and can’t take with any medication. ~E

  6. Sandra Lipson says:

    A suggestion: To avoid tooth enamel issues from drinking lemon water I drink it through a silicone straw which sends the liquid past the teeth. I also use them when drinking tea and coffee to prevent tooth staining.

  7. Pam says:

    Does TrueLemon (in small packets) have enzymes?

  8. Kay says:

    I realize this is late, but someone asked about the juice in the plastic lemons.
    I cannot get fresh lemons here, so I have been using the little plastic lemons, going on 3 years now, I think. Real fruit may very well be better for us, but with no other options, I HAVE noticed some improvements in some areas using the juices instead. So if that is your only option, it’s ok. 🙂
    However on the idea that it helps clear acne, if I get too much vit c I actually break out.
    Also, yes to rinsing immediately after and either wait 45-60minutes before brushing or brush first.
    My question, does lemon juice added to my tea, after I’ve steeped it and it’s cooled a bit, provide the same benefits?
    I’d been drinking the lemon water for 2 years and noticed some major improvements, but then stopped for a while (got distracted), noticed after a while the improved areas lagging again, and started adding back tea with lemon, but I haven’t noticed any improvements in the same areas. So I’m wondering if there’s a difference in how I’m taking it that could be reducing benefits? Or maybe cause it’s bottled juice it’s just taking longer?

    • Hi Kay, thanks for your questions. Bottled lemon juice should not be used for health reasons. I realize real lemons are hard to find sometimes, so you could use limes (if you can find them) or eat other whole citrus fruitd daily, such as an orange or grapefruit if available. Bottled lemon juice contains additives and is more lemon flavoring than lemon juice. It’s often just citric acid mixed with water and preservatives, so it doesn’t have any health benefits. Again, to be clear, bottled lemon juice is sometimes used as lemon flavor for cooking, but does not have health benefits. Bottled lemon juice is low in Vitamin C and does not contain the enzymes of a fresh lemon. If you can’t find real lemons or limes, I suggest a good-quality Vitamin C supplement from your health food store. RE: the tea. If it’s cooled and you use a real lemon or lime you will still get some benefits. And re: Vitamin C and acne, sometimes the anti-inflammatory effect of Vitamin C can cause detoxing symptoms at first, which can result in acne. Over time that should subside.

  9. I just got out of icu cuz they said my sodium was low and my potassium was not good and not to eat Orange’s so I said to drink lemon water

  10. CiNdy says:

    Good grief… sorry for the typos in my last comment. I was unable to scroll down to review and correct before posting!

  11. CIndy says:

    Great encouragements on drinking lemon water. I want to add one more, very important one: rinse your teeth a thoroughly a couple of times after consuming. I’ve been drinking a pint of lemon water every morning for about 35 years and my dentist believes that’s the reason I my two front inscisors got so thin I had to get some very expensive veneers put on. There’s a mane for that bump behind your upper front teeth. That’s what I lost and then my teeth were losing length because they were so thin they starting wearing off from the bottom up! I was so bummed. The dentist asked if I was or had ever been blue mic because it looking like a chemical erosion. And not due to grinding in my sleep (since bottom teeth didn’t show signs of grinding). Fortunately I’m not nor have ever been bulimic. I mentioned the juice of half a lemon in my water every morning for years and she emphatically believes that was the culprit. Great- so what I was doing for good health, worked against me. So please, PLEASE, take a few seconds and rinse after consuming your wonderful lemon water. Wished I’d started this 3 decades ago!

  12. Eric says:

    should i take off the seeds?

  13. Cc collins says:

    One person asked if lemon water was a scientifically proven diuretic. I’m no scientist or doctor. But, when I drink bottles lemon juice with water, I go to the restroom multiple times every hour. I notice the increase immediately upon starting this water routine.

  14. Florence E Terrana says:

    How often can you drink lemon water per day?

  15. Joyce Webster says:

    My son just got a new heart. His kidneys are not working and he is retaining fluid would lemon water help with some of the retention?

  16. Shannon says:

    With the warm lemon water, can I sweeten it with stevia and still get the same results?

  17. Naveen Prem says:

    Why can’t you use lemon juice?? It’s the same thing because it’s juice from a lemon!

    • Hi Naveen, pre-bottled lemon juice has the same flavor, but it’s heated and missing many of the enzymes of a freshly cut lemon. Most pre-bottled lemon juice also contains added citric acid or other additives that can irritate the gut lining when consumed on an empty stomach. A real fresh lemon is best.

    • Laura Stone says:

      I have also read that adding a bit of the lemon zest in the warm lemon water helps the anti-inflamatory results and could aid in keeping bowels more regular. Do you have any information on this?

  18. Babby says:

    Suffering edema due to venous insufficiency…suggested I try a diuretic but they lower BP and I already run low. Lemon water sounds like my new best friend!

  19. Lance Williams says:

    Hi Elizabeth, I have always heard, mainly from friends and family, that lemon water was good for you. My wife and I were discussing it today and so I looked it up. I read your post and several others. Most of them said there is no scientific proof lemon water is a diuretic. Can you point to a medical study that has proven lemon water is a diuretic? It’s now a debate between my wife and I. :). Thank you in advance. Lance.

  20. Craig P Holbrook says:

    It is much better to end one’s day with a mug of warm lemon water for the diuretic effect. Doing so about 2-3 hours before sleep with no other liquid imbibed will bring about the best diuretic effect by morning. This is especially important for dieter’s rightfully in need of the whoosh!

  21. KAREN STOLOFF says:

    I drink organic bottled lemon juice-assume because it is organic, this is okay. Are there any negatives to drinking this every day versus a few times a week? Thanks!

  22. Elaine says:

    What is BFF
    Does lemon help or hinder leg cramps

  23. Debra McLemore says:

    Thanks for the info about the lemon.

  24. ksec says:

    Can a squirt of realemon do the same thing? You know, that concentrate in the plastic lemons…

  25. Guest says:

    I drink lemon water every day! Usually the first thing that goes in my body in the morning. I love lemons with all my heart 🙂 I also recently began drinking 1 tsp baking soda with water in the morning to enhance my efforts of alkalizing my body, do you know much about this technique?

  26. stevetheowl says:

    Great post, Elizabeth! My wife has been drinking a lot of lemon water lately, so it is very interesting to learn some of its properties!

  27. Are there any benefits of warm vs. cold lemon water? If so, why is warm more beneficial?

    • Hi Lisa! Warm water is absorbed into the body easier, your body needs to bring cold water to body temperature to use it – so warm/hot (but not boiling) is considered more desirable by health professionals when it comes to the benefits of lemon water. Hope that helps!

  28. Love your reasons for drinking lemon water. I drink it first thing in the morning and throughout the day. Very refreshing!

Hi, I'm Elizabeth

I teach you how to be healthier without extremes, so you can live more and obsess less.

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