pitcher of lemon water

We all know the recommendation to drink at least 8 glasses of water per day.  This is important for hydration, but it's also the best way to remove toxins from your body.  Your kidneys need water to do their job of eliminating toxins, so if you don't drink water, the toxins linger in your body.  A steady source of water is essential.  Many doctors say it doesn't need to be specifically 8 glasses of water.  

Even better than drinking pure water, is to drink lemon water.  You may notice some restaurants will bring water with a lemon in it.  It's make the normal experience of drinking water more refreshing.  It cleanses the palate so your food tastes better.  But lemon water has health benefits in addition to a refreshing taste.  

There are some fads out there saying to do a lemon water 'cleanse', which is fasting while drinking nothing but lemon water for days.  These rarely work in the long run, and if you are trying to regain health after cancer treatment, your goal is to make sustainable changes that help you survive and enjoy life.  An unproven detox is probably not something you want to 'try'.

But there is plenty of evidence that a morning glass of lemon water has many benefits that complement your cancer recover and detox efforts.

Helps the kidneys and liver

As mentioned above, your kidneys need water to flush toxins, so lemon water is a tasty way to make hydration a priority.

In addition to helping the kidneys, lemon helps the liver produce more enzymes, boosting the detoxification functions of the liver.

Aids Digestion

Lemon water aids digestion, and reduces urinary tract infections, and helps get the bowels moving - again, aiding in the removal of toxins.

Helps Your Immune System

The regular dose of vitamin C gives your immune system a boost, helping to fight infections.

Reduces Aches and Pains

Lemon water reduces aches and pains by reducing uric acid in our joints.  

Improves Brain Function

In addition to vitamin C, lemon contains potassium which helps your brain and nervous system function - which may ease the 'chemo fog' that many cancer survivors experience.

So, while a full-scale lemon water detox program is not recommended.  Having a morning routine with fresh lemon water (or in the winter, some lemon tea with honey) is a small, but healthy new habit that many people find they really enjoy.

A word of caution: keep in mind that the acid in lemon water can be harmful to tooth enamel.  If you are drinking it regularly, consider rinsing afterward with regular water.  Also, some people may find the acid is too much for their stomach, if that is the case, keep drinking water, but reduce or eliminate the lemon.  You will get these same benefits from a diet rich in other fruits.