Lemon Benefits and Uses
Juicy, aromatic and highly acidic, lemons bring out the flavor in sweet and savory foods but they nearly always play a supporting role in the kitchen. Lemon is an inexpensive, easily available citrus fruit, popular for its culinary and medicinal uses. There are enormous benefits of lemon juice in your everyday life. It is a universally favorite fruit and an essential food in kitchens everywhere.
In India, Ayurveda medicine values the lemon as a fruit and for its properties. It is sour, warm, promoter of gastric fire, light, good for vision, pungent and astringent.
Lemons contain vitamin C, citric acid, flavonoids, B-complex vitamins, calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, and fiber.
Benefits and uses of Lemon:
Boosts your immune system: Lemons are high in Vitamin C and potassium. Vitamin C is great for fighting colds and potassium stimulates brain and nerve function and helps control blood pressure.
Balances pH: Lemons are acidic to begin with but they are alkaline-forming on body fluids helping to restore balance to the body’s pH.
Good for stomach: Lemon can help relieve many digestion problems when mixed with hot water. By drinking lemon juice regularly, the bowels are aided in eliminating waste more efficiently. Lemon acts as a blood purifier and as a cleansing agent. The intake of lemon juice can cure constipation.
Colds and sore throats: Lemons feature antibacterial properties that help aid sore throats.
Mix half of a lemon with water and gargle. lemon juice taken along with crushed garlic and honey can help to ease cold symptoms such as sore throat.
Asthma: One tablespoon of pure lemon juice before each meal relieves Asthma.
Good for Weight Loss: One of the major health benefits of drinking lemon water is that it paves way for losing weight faster, thus acting as a great weight loss remedy. If a person takes lemon juice mixed with lukewarm water and honey, it can reduce the body weight as well.
Controls High Blood Pressure: Lemon water works wonders for people having heart problem, owing to its high potassium content. It controls high blood pressure, dizziness, nausea as well as provides relaxation to mind and body. It also reduces mental stress and depression and increases the levels of HDL (good cholesterol) .
Dandruff Control: Massage lemon juice into your scalp, leave it on for 5 minutes and shampoo as usual.
Skin Care: Lemon juice soothes the dry skin when applied with little glycerin.
Culinary uses of Lemon:
Lemon juice, rind, and zest are used in a wide variety of foods and drinks. Lemon juice is used to make lemonade, soft drinks, and cocktails. Lemon juice is also used as a short-term preservative on certain foods that tend to oxidize and turn brown after being sliced (enzymatic browning), such as apples, bananas, and avocados, where its acid denatures the enzymes.
Lemon juice and rind are used to make marmalade, lemon curd and lemon liqueur. Lemon slices and lemon rind are used as a garnish for food and drinks. Lemon zest, the grated outer rind of the fruit, is used to add flavor to baked goods, puddings, rice, and other dishes.
The leaves of the lemon tree are used to make a tea and for preparing cooked meats and seafoods. The tangy juice can also be used as a tenderiser for tough chicken, beef and lamb.
- When cooking with lemon juice, if possible, add it at the end of the cooking time or after the dish has been cooked to minimize or prevent the loss of vitamin C.
- When cooking fresh vegetables, squeeze lemon juice on them to keep their colors bright.
- It can make rice whiter and softer. Just add a few drops to the rice as it is cooking.