How to Use Lemons to Lose Weight

How to Use Lemons to Lose Weight
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Have you ever tried to lose weight by sticking to a strict diet plan, only to have the weight stick to you? So many people try diets that result in a “yo-yo” effect of losing—and then regaining—weight, never yielding a lifelong loss.

This pattern is not only frustrating, but it can take a toll on your body’s metabolism and digestive processes. So what can be done to correct this problem? The answer may lie in the humble lemon.

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The Lemon Juice Diet

Health writer Theresa Cheung, author of The Lemon Juice Diet, has written extensively about the benefits of lemon juice for dieters looking to finally find success in their weight loss.

The lemon juice diet isn’t a stringent, short-term cleanse (although it does begin with a week-long detox). It doesn’t involve deprivation of healthy foods or important nutrients. Rather, it involves adding lemon juice to your existing diet in order to fix metabolic wrongs in your body and kick your diet into high gear.

Cheung claims that when we have poor digestion, it can stop our body from getting the nutrients it needs to burn fat, and can also cause a build-up of toxins in our body, and this leaves us feeling sluggish and depressed, slows down metabolism, and make weight-loss goals much harder to achieve.

Cheung believes that when it comes to improving the body’s digestive and detox systems, lemon is a natural booster (for other detox ideas and foods read my eBook The Detox Guide).

Lemons are rich in citric acid and vitamin C which improves digestion and blood sugar levels, and the pectin in lemon peel and pulp is a great source of fiber that helps weight loss.

Of course, lemons are just one factor in correcting sluggish digestion and slow metabolism, and they will not magically make you slim, but they can help you save calories and support your weight-loss efforts.

Lemon For Weight Loss – the Research

Theresa Cheung is not the first person to have discovered the power of lemons as a digestive and weight loss aid.

A 2008 study performed by researchers from Japan found that lemon polyphenols—found in the peel of the fruit—had an interesting effect on metabolism. These polyphenols reduced obesity in mice even when they were fed a high-fat diet. These findings were published in the Journal of Clinical Biochemistry and Nutrition on November 2008 issue. 1

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Another study—this one using human participants instead of rodent subjects—from 1997 published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition found that pectin was able to make people feel fuller for longer. Pectin, which can be found in the juice of lemons, makes an ideal diet aid for this satiety-increasing property it has. This enables dieters to crave food less often, and can help reduce overeating for that reason. 2

Both these research studies and Theresa Cheung’s book lend credence to the idea that lemons—be it in juice form or peel form—can help dieters lose weight and maintain a healthy body size.

The 7 Principles of Losing Weight (and Keeping it Off!) According to the Book

To be successful in dieting and weight loss, it’s important to commit to an overall lifestyle change rather than hopping from fad diet to fad diet. The book mentions seven main principles of weight loss that should be incorporated into your life to increase your chances of a successful diet journey:

1. Begin each day with lemon water

Each day when you wake up, squeeze the juice of one lemon into a glass of water and drink it down to lose pounds.

This ensures that you begin the day with your digestive system ready to take on the world (or at least the foods you’re going to be eating). The pectin in the lemon juice can help you feel fuller for longer and the water is a great way to start the day hydrated.

Further reading – You can read more about the benefits of lemon water in my article about 8 health benefits of drinking lemon water.

2. Don’t skimp on the fruits and veggies

Fruits and vegetables are your friends. They tend to be low in calories and high in nutritional value, providing tons of vitamins and minerals the natural way.

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The fiber in these foods will also help keep your digestion healthy and can also aid in feelings of fullness. Make sure you get at least five servings of fruits and veggies each day.

Further reading – Different colors in fruits and vegetables indicate different antioxidants in these foods, so it is therefore important to diverse their consumption and consume each color as part of your daily nutrition in order to maximize the nutritional benefits. Read more about it in my article about 5 reasons why you should eat multiple colored fruits & vegetables.

3. Keep blood sugar balanced

Starving yourself is the ultimate diet no-no. This can throw your blood sugar out of balance and tell your body to cling to fat. This is the opposite of what almost any dieter wants, so eat small meals frequently in order to keep your blood sugar on an even keel and eat protein with each meal.

Lemon juice and peel help maintain blood sugar levels so sugar is released steadily into your bloodstream and you don’t end up craving food all the time.

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4. Ditch the sugary food

It goes without saying—foods high in processed sugars are off-limits when you’re transitioning to a healthy lifestyle. Soft drinks, cakes, candies, and other sugary processed snacks need to hit the road if you want to be successful in your weight loss journey.

Further reading – Read my articles about 13 ways to quit sugar and 6 things that happen to your body when you quit sugar.

5. Learn to love the “good” fats

Believe it or not, but some high-fat foods are very friendly for dieters. These foods include omega 3 rich foods such as avocados, oily fish, nuts and seeds and unsaturated fats like olive oil, to keep your fat content up the healthy way.

6. Keep it fresh and keep it whole

No more processed foods and white breads. Instead, opt for as much fresh, whole food such as beans and lentils, wholemeal bread and pasta. You’d be surprised how economically viable a fresh and whole diet can be—whole beans are particularly inexpensive in most place, and packed with fiber.

Further reading – Read about these 10 worst ingredients in food which are commonly used in processed foods, and be aware of these 8 scary ingredients commonly found in commercial bread.

7. Take it slowly

One habit that landed many dieters in a place where they overeat is the tendency to take things too quickly.

From eating to setting goals, things should begin slowly and proceed at a steady pace. Eat slowly, taking time to savor each bite and to chew your food thoroughly. This promotes not only better digestion, but can also help your body’s satiety signals kick in more quickly, reducing the tendency to overeat. Also keep portions moderate, and eat at regular times.

Who is Not Suitable for the Lemon Juice Diet?

People who suffer from heartburn, kidney or gall-bladder problems, or have a citrus allergy, should consult with their GP before going on this diet.

Other Foods that can Help you Lose Weight

Learn how to lose weight with ACV.
Discover what eating just one ounce of coconut oil does to your weight.
Delicious honey and cinnamon weight loss drink.

Resources:
(1) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2581754/
(2) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9322190
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2 Responses to How to Use Lemons to Lose Weight

  1. Paula Foster says:

    Can I use lime instead of lemons seeing as lemon is rare where I live

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