Throughout my whole life I thought I was living hydrated until I drank lemon water every day for a week and experienced complete and total hydration like never before.
It’s interesting that over the course of my career in college I carried a unique CamelBak water bottle that had a distinctive rainbow colored look. This was the perfect school ensemble accessory that I proudly displayed on almost a daily basis. As I progressed from class to class throughout the day, the sound of water sloshing around followed me around. This served as a sort of alert to my professors as well as friends that I was either approaching or had just arrived.
As with many people, water plays a central role in my life. Even when in a restaurant it is almost like I have a Pavlovian response to the sound of water being poured into a glass. I have a tendency to keep drinking water regardless of how much is poured into my glass as I sit in restaurants. As a matter of fact, I just keep on drinking water regardless of how much I have already had to drink. It’s interesting that once I remember reading somewhere that coffee tends to be very dehydrating and for each cup of coffee you consume you should follow it with a glass of water. Anyone who knows me knows that I drink a lot of coffee, and as a result you can imagine I also drink a lot of water. Also interesting is that I tend to consume large amounts of fruits and vegetables that are all high in water content. Everything from pineapple to cucumber and watermelon and other water-rich foods are standard in my diet.
Not surprisingly, there is a culture out there on social media including everything from Twitter to Instagram and beauty blogs that recommend drinking large amounts of water. Staying hydrated by drinking a lot of water has been pushed today as a cure-all for everything from sleep disorder to bloated stomach and headaches as well as even skin issues. Personally, my experience has been that when I drink what could be considered to be a large amount of water, my skin looks more vibrant, I sleep better and I have fewer headaches.
So when the proposal from my editor came about that maybe I take on this hydrating challenge of drinking nothing but lemon water every day for an entire week, I thought to myself what a great idea. That’s easy, I can do that, I said to myself. Everyone knows that famous actors like Cameron Diaz routine include lemon with almost everything. I should mention that when it comes to Charlie’s Angel, she is my second favorite. Honestly, why not try it and do the same?
This first day began with me having one of my co-workers pick up lemons through the instant cart service. He was able to purchase for me six very large lemons.
Even with those extra large lemons, I was concerned that it might not be enough. Because I live in the greater Los Angeles area I was fortunate enough to have in my back yard some mature lemon trees. This is good news, because if I ran out of lemons, I could easily pick some juicy ones right off those trees.
Sitting at my desk, I made a mess by cutting one in half and then squeezing it into the water in my bottle. A hot-pink style Swell bottle, no less. Funny enough, I ended up getting lemon juice all over my desk with it even spilling over onto the floor. This was not a problem because I truly enjoy the smell of citrus, so no big deal really. The only problem was that now there were several lemon seeds bobbing around in the water. Like most people I prefer not to swallow lemon seeds.
To my surprise, when I sipped from the water bottle it was amazingly tasty and delicious. With only 1/2 of a lemon, the water was perfectly flavored with just the right amount of tartness. Perhaps you are wondering what my desired level of tartness is? Well, it is halfway between eating a raw lemon and drinking some regular lemonade that is very tart. My thirst adequately quenched, my mouth now feels fully refreshed.
Enjoying the afternoon, I add more water to my bottle one more time and then squeeze the other half of the lemon into the water. Surprisingly, even with water fountain water that tastes really bad, the lemon water is amazingly refreshing. In a way it is a personal success that the lemon water acts to mask the bad tasting water from the water fountain.
Bringing home a bunch of lemons, I placed them safely in my kitchen on a standard cake style tower. They look perfect on their perch and taste absolutely delicious. Now anyone who comes to see me will consider me to be an in-style woman who uses lemons to cook. I guess I am kind of cool when it comes to lemon water. I proceed to squeeze another lemon-half into my water to enjoy it with dinner.
Riding to work in my car, I happily drink half of my lemon water. This means I have to fill up the bottle again with water from the fountain. This results in a dilution of the lemon taste which I’m not excited about. This time I cut some lemons in the kitchen and squeeze the juice into my water, doing so over the sink. What ends up sinking to the bottom of my water bottle is four lonely lemon seeds.
Over the course of the day I fill up the bottle three times. I do this using the water fountain and the lemons that I brought with me. Every time I remove the annoying seeds when I’m finished. Maybe I should consider buying a strainer or even a small spoon as a way to get rid of the seeds.
When I return home, I become paranoid again at the idea of coming up short with lemons prior to the end of the challenge. As such, I head outside and pull down some juicy and delicious looking lemons from the tree in my yard. Relaxing, I now enjoy a glass of lemon water and watch TV. It’s one of the original episodes of Real Housewives of New York. This activity makes me feel remarkably healthy and impressively chic. raising up my lemon water in unison, I shout “this is to us,” in response to my favorite TV characters toasting with a glass of quality wine.
Waking up on day three I find myself immediately thirsty. I have a strong desire for some lemon water. I’m a little confused because I’m usually not thirsty in the morning. I prepare a glass of lemon water as I get ready for work. It’s kind of funny that I’m making lemon water rather than just pouring from a water filter. Consuming nothing but lemon water seems to go well with my daily routine.
In anticipation of a need for more lemons at work, I bring two large pieces of the tart fruit to my job. My estimation is correct, I end up downing a large amount of water with lemon while sitting at my desk. I tell myself that all this water consumption is okay, even in light of the fact that I’m getting up every 20 minutes to go to the restroom.
Finally that day, I enjoy a hefty glass of lemon water during dinner. I also enjoy another glass later in the evening.
Back at work, I have a full bottle of lemon water. Maybe it is time to research the health benefits of drinking this type of water as I begin to check the results of my efforts. Glamour magazine, one of my favorite fashion publications reports that drinking water with lemon in the morning boosts the body’s enzyme function. It goes on to say that lemon water is incredibly hydrating while it stimulates the liver and boosts physical and mental energy. The article also says that many famous actors and actresses routinely enjoy lemon water. This makes me feel good knowing that I am in such good company.
Even with famous people making this a part of their routine, I’m also in search of solid medical and scientific proof that what I’m doing has real benefit. After searching online, I come across an interesting website called Healthline.com. This is a great resource that identifies several important benefits of consuming lemon water. For example, it eliminates bad breath, reduces the chances of kidney stones and supports good digestion. It also encourages weight loss and enhances skin quality while providing the body with generous amounts of vitamin C. Most importantly, it greatly improves hydration.
Having fresh breath is a big deal for me. So this is great news. Because I have always been worried about kidney stones, this is also excellent news. Also, it is no surprise to me that lemon water enhances the appearance of the skin. Not surprisingly, my skin looks great this week and even this morning the lemon juice is having a positive effect on clearing my skin.
Because lemon water tastes great, I find myself desiring the flavor. Today I somehow forget to bring lemons to work. As a result, I have to rely on the lemon water that is currently in my bottle as a way to satisfy my desire for this delicious liquid. Perhaps I can ration out what I have in some way.
Shockingly, I hardly make it to noon before drinking the whole bottle.
As a result, I’m forced to drink unsavory water from the fountain.
It tastes so bad that I go to the lower level of my office building and buy a bottle of brand-name water from one of the vending machines. While it tastes great and is refreshingly cold, it is missing the signature lemon that I’m accustomed to. I find this very upsetting!
Back at home, I prepare a glass of water with lemon and enjoy its delicious taste with dinner. I even include a glass of white wine. I do this simply because the magazine article talked about liver detoxification. I chased the wine with yet another glass of refreshing lemon water. The aftertaste is a distinctive combination of white wine and lemon. At this point, I wish that this was a regular thing.
Now I begin the day with some deliciously hot lemon water. Many famous people routinely do this as a way to fight a sore throat. while I don’t have a sore throat, I’m craving something hot, but not coffee. While this may be a bit of a shock, the weekend has arrived and I prefer to avoid caffeine!
Setting the record straight, water with lemon that is hot is not the best. This is disappointing, but I decide to not be wasteful. As such, I simply add a bag of black tea. The result is a combination of lemon and tea which sounds good. This was the only time that my lemon water tasted remarkably bland. It turns out that I prefer to drink lemon water cold without exception. In short, when it’s hot it tastes bad and when it’s cold it is truly refreshing.
My grandmother and I go to lunch later that day and order nothing but water and a bunch of lemons. I end up with a glass of water and a few lemon wedges. I simply squeeze them straight into the glass.
For the rest of the day I do nothing but drink cold tasty lemon water. As my skin begins to look more and more beautiful I decide to not even wear makeup. Once again, I get up from my desk for one more time to pee. I have now peed hundreds of times and have lost count.
The last day has arrived. Or maybe not? The supply of lemons in my backyard is still bountiful. While there has been no noticeable weight loss or a substantial increase in energy or even better digestion, I have sensed that my skin looks fantastic. If I could observe the inside of my body, I would bet that my organs including my liver look remarkably great.
One concern I have is that of dental health. I am just a little bit concerned that the strong acid of the lemons might be damaging my tooth enamel. However, I routinely use a mouthwash that is designed to protect the teeth, so I should be okay.
At breakfast, I drink more lemon water and have yet another glass as I prepare to run errands on Sunday. As someone who has always tried to stay hydrated, I think the main point to take away from this unique lemon water challenge is that my desire to drink water is the strongest when it has good flavor.
Everything that has happened sends me back to a time when my aunt, someone who avoids drinking water unless it has at least a hint of flavor is in my mind. I always thought that my aunt was strange because she would only drink water if it was flavored. However, now I totally understand where she was coming from.
Perhaps healthy hydration and beautifully clear skin may not be enough reasons for you to drink water with lemon? Here is good reason why adding lemon to otherwise bland water can have a profound effect on your life.