This post is barely a recipe at all, but it is such an important part of my daily diet, I wanted to share it with you. And it’s an excellent distraction from the sour chewy sweets I used to love eating.
Lemons and limes are absolute powerhouses of positive, alkalising nutrition, reducing the risk of contracting various long-term health problems and giving a boost to the immune system in general.
Providing an excellent source of vitamin C, they are helpful in preventing osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, atherosclerosis and diabetic heart disease. They also contain unique flavonoid compounds and limonoids, which provide powerful, long-lasting, anti-cancer effects (source: World’s Healthiest Foods).
They are also deliciously sour. Although I enjoy utilising them in a wonderful variety of cooking applications, my absolute favourite way to harness this nutritional potential is by drinking lemon or lime juice (watered down of course!), often several times a day. A large glass of lemon or lime juice in the morning is a fantastically healthy way to start your digestion off in the morning, and throughout the day, this drink can give a welcome boost to your vitamin C intake among the other multiple benefits I have already gushed about.
I used to only be able to drink this with a little sugar added, which is unlikely to maximise the health benefits, but I have retrained myself to appreciate it as it is. If you’re struggling with the sourness, I suggest using a little less juice and building up a resistance to the (delicious!) sour, rather than adding a sweetener.
Lemons and limes don’t get much of a chance to go off in my house, but if they do in yours, it’s good to know that they freeze well – just defrost overnight in the fridge. If you are as keen on this drink as me (or you don’t have room in your freezer for loads of fruit), you might like to consider squeezing a large batch of juice and freezing it in ice cube trays. This will preserve the nutrients in a way that the fridge will not and all you need to do is pop a few ice cubes in a glass of water when you fancy a drink. Read about other fascinating uses for lemons and limes here.
This drink really is a superb addition to your day. If you live somewhere with cheap lemons and limes, spare a thought for me – I moved to Stockholm in Sweden yesterday and the biggest shock so far has been the price of limes. I’m still recovering.
- 1/2 lemon or lime
- one medium glass of water
- Squeeze the lemon or lime juice through a strainer into a small bowl. I have found a wooden reamer to be the best implement for the job. You do not have to strain the juice, but I really don't enjoy a lumpy drink, so for me it is important.
- Pour into the glass of water.