Everyone knows that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. This is true for two reasons. First, eating breakfast “breaks the fast” your body endured while you were sleeping. (Unless you are a sleep walker that eats during the night.) A morning meal filled with plant-based, nutrient dense food gives your body the fuel it needs to get your day up and running smoothly.
Another reason to make time for breakfast is to reap the mental benefits of engaging in a morning ritual. In some odd way, the actions you engage in at the start of your day sets the tone for the rest of your day. Being intentional about what you eat, drink, do, hear and see as you prepare yourself for the day shapes your thoughts, attitudes and health as you go forth into the world.
I like to “break the fast” with a cup of warm lemon water. The act of drinking something warm naturally slows me down. I find it kinda hard to zip around the house taking big gulps of a warm drink without burning myself and creating a huge mess. It just doesn’t work! So I’m forced to slow down and take intentional sips. But it’s kinda nice because gives me time to think about the things I need and want to do during the day before jumping into action. Just taking a few moments to plan my day helps reduce my stress level and clears my mind.
There are more good reasons to start your day with a cup of warm lemon water. I bet you didn’t know that lemons…….
1. Boost immune health. Lemons are a great source of vitamin B, vitamin C, and potassium. Vitamin C is an antioxidant which helps destroy free radicals in the body and helps strengthen the immune system. Potassium is a very important mineral involved in regulating blood pressure, so if you have hypertension – consider adding lemon water to your morning regime.
2. Balance internal pH. Lemons help create an alkaline environment (or a basic, if you recall your high school chemistry class) in the body which promotes good health and may even support weight loss.
3. Improve digestive health. Our digestive tract has a big job to do. It is responsible for digesting the foods we eat and converting it into a form usable by our body cells. Lemons help our digestive organs get the job done by stimulating the flow of saliva which moistens food and contains enzymes that begins the breakdown of starch. Lemons also provide vitamins and minerals that help reduce toxins in the intestinal tract. A reduction in toxins also helps reduce the risk of colon cancer. And one more thing, lemons benefit bile formation which is a substance that helps break down fats in the small intestine.
4. Support weight loss. If you’re like me, you’re famished when you first open your eyes in the morning. When you’re hungry you want to eat, right? Well, hold on….take a few minutes to think about what would be a smart food choice before you go raiding the refrigerator or pantry. Sipping on a warm cup of lemon water can be just the “pause” you need to compose yourself, consider your food options and make a choice that will leave you feeling energized for the busy day that lies ahead.
So the next time you are go out, pick up a bag of lemons. Sit them on your counter. And try this health-boosting morning elixir!
Warm Lemon Water Elixir
1/2 ripe lemon or 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 cup warm pure water
Gently stir the ingredients together. Sip slowly.