8 Reasons Drinking Lemon Water Is One of the Healthiest Ways to Hydrate (2023)

Simple changes can have a big impact on your well-being. We’re told we need to drink plenty of water to stay hydrated—not to mention the million and one reasons why your body needs water to function. But plain water isn’t always enticing. One way to make your water more exciting is to add a squeeze of lemon or a few lemon slices. It may seem simple, but the hint of lemon can make you reach for your water bottle more often. Plus, the fresh lemon has a few potential added benefits for your health.

“Most of the benefits reported from drinking lemon water are not exclusive to lemon water, but in fact reveal the nutrition and health benefits of lemons,” says Kristen Carli, MS, RD, the founder of Camelback Nutrition & Wellness. “Mixing these two ingredients together does not result in some magic transformation, but it’s rather refreshing!”

It’s true—lemon water isn’t a magical concoction that will solve all your health woes, but it certainly has some perks worth mentioning. Here are six nutritious reasons to quench your thirst with lemon water.

Health Benefits of Lemon Water

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Lemon water is a great way to drink enough fluids.

The most obvious health benefit of lemon water is that it’s a clever way to get yourself to drink water. About 60 percent of your body weight consists of water, so it’s no surprise that it’s involved in many bodily functions, some of which include regulating your body temperature, protecting your organs, and carrying nutrients to your cells. Without enough water, you run the risk of dehydration, which can have some serious side effects if taken to the extreme.

“If lemon water helps you drink more water, I am all for it,” says Maggie Moon, MS, RD, Los Angeles–based dietitian and author of The Mind Diet. “The brain is made up of mostly water, so starving it of water hits hard, resulting in dehydration symptoms as mild as fatigue, irritability, and difficulty concentrating or as severe as confusion, inability to form sentences, collapse, and even death.”

How much water do you need? While every single body technically has a different fluid intake (dependent on unique factors such as age, sex, body mass, lifestyle, climate/environment, and activity levels). But having an informed, estimated guidepost is helpful: The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics recommends nine cups daily for women and 13 cups for men. The average U.S. adult currently drinks about 44 ounces of water per day (roughly 5.5 cups), per the CDC, so many of us could benefit from adding more fluids (hello, lemon water) into our daily routines. The good news is you can get fluids from both food and drinks.

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Lemon water is a good source of antioxidants.

If there’s one thing we associate citrus fruits with, it’s antioxidants. Since lemons are high in antioxidants, lemon water could be a tasty way to reap some of the benefits of an antioxidant-rich diet.

Antioxidants work by preventing cell damage, also known as oxidative stress. This cellular damage has been linked to a variety of diseases, but antioxidants can counteract oxidative stress, thereby preventing disease, per the National Institutes of Health.

“The more antioxidants, the better,” Carli says. “You really can’t get too many antioxidants in your diet, as they’re inversely associated with risk of developing chronic diseases like type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.”

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Lemon water contains beneficial vitamin C.

“Lemon water provides vitamin C, and the body needs vitamin C everyday,” Moon says. It’s often associated with immune health, but it’s also essential for wound healing, iron absorption, and blocking free radical damage, notes the National Library of Medicine.

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Lemon water also provides potassium.

Vitamin C is a notable micronutrient found in lemons, but it’s not the only one. Though it's not necessarily the highest-potassium food you can heat, lemon definitely does provide some potassium, almost 32 mg per fluid ounce of lemon juice and almost 10 mg per tablespoon of zest. Potassium is an essential mineral (and electrolyte) with many important jobs. It's mainly known for its roles in nerve functioning and helping to regulate your blood pressure.

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Lemon water has a healthy compound called citric acid.

Lemon juice is also famous for its citric acid content, a compound found in citrus fruits that’s linked to many health benefits. Studies have shown that consuming citric-acid-rich lemon can help improve blood pressure. It’s also been associated with helping to prevent kidney stones. In a small 2019 trial, subjects who drank two liters of lemonade per day had a decreased risk of developing kidney stones.

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Lemon water can help your body absorb more iron.

When you don’t get enough iron in your diet, you may be at risk of iron deficiency or anemia. It affects millions of people worldwide, and it’s more likely to affect women and children than men. Some people naturally have more difficulty absorbing iron, which is why Moon recommends combining iron-rich foods with sources of vitamin C, such as lemon water. Vitamin C increases iron absorption in plant-based foods, per the National Institutes of Health.

The most readily available form of iron—heme iron, which is found in animal protein—may not need the boost from vitamin C. But vegans, vegetarians, and people who consume plant-based iron sources could find that a glass of lemon water alongside their meals could help with absorbing iron. Researchers have found that up to 30 percent of the heme iron in animal proteins is absorbed, while only 2 to 9 percent of non-heme iron is absorbed from plant-based sources. Beans, spinach, seeds, and quinoa are some examples of plant-based sources of non-heme iron. When you eat these foods, consider adding a squeeze of lemon for flavor or enjoying a glass of lemon water for the added benefit of improved iron absorption.

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Lemon water can have anti-aging effects, inside and outside.

The benefits of vitamin C for your skin are well understood. In skin care, vitamin C is thought to stimulate collagen, fend off free radical damage, promote anti-aging, and hydrate skin cells. And drinking lemon water may have similar effects.

“In addition to working as an antioxidant in the body, the vitamin C in lemon juice could help create collagen,” Carli says. “Collagen production naturally declines as we age, which is all the more reason to help support your body's natural production of collagen by providing your body with plenty of vitamin C.” More research is needed, but there is some evidence that vitamin C increases collagen synthesis.

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It could also have anti-aging benefits outside of the appearance of your skin, owing to its hydrating power. “A 2023 study in Lancet suggests that adults who stay well-hydrated are slowing down their biological clocks,” Moon explains. “The study shows they manage to slow down premature aging, they’re healthier, live longer, and are less burdened by chronic disease.” Staying hydrated with lemon water could mean living longer but also ensuring those years are more enjoyable with good health.

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Lemon water is a healthier alternative to sugary beverages.

If you’re drinking lemon water, it means you’re not drinking something else. Water makes up just over half of nonalcoholic beverages consumed by adults in the United States, but the other half includes sweetened, fruit, and diet beverages, per the CDC. The CDC also notes that an estimated 63 percent of U.S. adults drink sugar-sweetened beverages daily.

“The biggest proponent for including more lemon water in your diet is as a way to replace the soda or other sugar-sweetened beverages in your diet,” Carli says. “Adding fruit like lemon to water is an excellent choice if you’re looking for a flavorful alternative to sugary drinks.”

While sugar can be enjoyed in moderation, replacing your sodas, sweet teas, and fruit drinks with lemon water could be a great way to lower your sugar intake while upping your consumption of water and antioxidants. Win-win!

How to Make Better Lemon Water

Making lemon water in your own kitchen is pretty much as straightforward as it sounds. Moon recommends the following tips for extra-delicious lemon water:

“Make the most of the lemon peel. Wash the lemon well and zest some lemon peel right into your water to release its aromatic oils,” she says. “Then cut a slice and squeeze some juice in, too.”


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Does Sparkling Water Hydrate You?


Does lemon water really hydrate you? ›

Can Lemon Water Cause Dehydration? No, lemon water can not cause dehydration and is a good way to hydrate the body. One dehydration definition is body water loss without a proportional loss of sodium and potassium, and lemons are a reasonably good source of potassium with approximately 80 mg of potassium per lemon.

What will happen to my body if I drink lemon water everyday? ›

Consuming large amounts of lemon water daily can damage the stomach. Due to its acidity, it can cause heartburn, nausea, and vomiting. One of the downsides of drinking lemon water daily is that it can trigger the development of ulcers. The acid in lemons can harm the stomach and intestinal linings, leading to ulcers.

What happens when you drink lemon water for 7 days? ›

A Gentle Digestive Kick

That means that any food that comes after the lemony drink will be digested easier, and the nutrients from it will be taken in better. The properties in lemons also aid gut health, according to the National Library of Medicine.

Is lemon water good for kidneys? ›

Lemons contain citrate, which helps prevent calcium from building up and forming stones in your kidneys. Interestingly, the benefit doesn't seem to be present in oranges, making lemon a unique tool in kidney stone prevention.

Does lemon water detox your liver? ›

Lemon Water

Many citrus fruits, including lemon, can be added to water to help stimulate and flush out the liver. To help improve liver function, enjoy 4-6 tablespoons of lemon juice mixed with water each day.

How much lemon water should you drink a day? ›

How much lemon water should you drink? Stephens recommends using the juice from two to three lemons (about four to six tablespoons) throughout the day, and drinking one or two glasses of lemon water with meals, and one glass in between meals. But don't necessarily add lemon to every glass of water you drink.

Who should not drink lemon water? ›

It can aggravate stomach problems and heartburn

Therefore, you should consult a doctor before drinking lemon water if you experience any symptoms. People with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) should avoid excess intake of lemon juice.

Does lemon water clean out your intestines? ›

No. The idea of detoxing is to flush out harmful toxins from the body, but the human body already naturally rids itself of waste through digestion. There is no evidence that any kind of “detox diet” removes toxins from the body or has any notable health benefits.

Is too much lemon water bad for your kidneys? ›

No evidence suggests drinking lemon water can harm the kidneys. Lemon water may have some health benefits, as it is a good source of vitamin C and may help boost the immune system.

How long does it take to see results from lemon water? ›

How long does it take to get the results? Results such as improvement in digestion and higher energy levels can be seen within one week of regular consumption of warm lemon water.

Is cold lemon water good for you? ›

Lemon water has health benefits that include adding vitamin C and antioxidants into your diet. This option can also help you cut back on sugary sports drinks and juices, which aren't as healthy for you.

How long should you not eat after drinking lemon water? ›

Drink it fairly quickly, and wait at least a half hour before eating to reap the most benefits. What are the benefits? Lemons have loads of vitamin C, which assists in decreasing the production of wrinkles, and defends your skin against free-radical damage.

Does lemon water reduce belly fat? ›

Lemon water can promote fullness, support hydration, boost metabolism, and increase weight loss. However, lemon water is no better than regular water when it comes to losing fat.

What drink is good to flush your kidneys? ›

Beets and their juices contain Betaine which increases urine acidity, prevents build-up of struvite and calcium phosphate and reduces the chances of kidney stone formation. Other effective cleansing agents are coconut water, cucumber juice and cherries.

Is lemon water good for high blood pressure? ›

Lemon drink contains traces of several minerals that may be beneficial in lowering blood pressure. Calcium and potassium both can lower blood pressure in those suffering from hypertension. A study suggests that lemon water can help bring the number to the normal range immediately.

Does lemon water repair fatty liver? ›

Citrusy lemon packed with a powerhouse of vitamin C, potent antioxidants avert free radicals from damaging liver cells and improve liver health. Aside from this, the natural hepatoprotective traits of lemon exhibit a positive impact on the alcoholic-induced fatty liver by bringing down the lipid profile levels.

What happens when you drink lemon water before bed? ›

Hot lemon water may induce relaxation before bed, which could help with sleep. It can also help with general hydration. Lemon contains vitamin C, which is important for several bodily functions. Hot lemon water may provide other benefits, but there is a lack of evidence behind most health claims.

Is lemon water good for your bladder? ›

"Drinking lemon water can be a healthy habit that encourages optimal bladder health by providing much-needed hydration to the body—and that's enough of a reason to drink it in the day," she says.

Is it better to drink lemon water at night or morning? ›

Lemon water is most effective if consumed first thing in the morning. It is recommended to add lemon juice to warm water because it helps extract vitamin C and polyphenols from the lemon and its peel.

Should lemon water be hot or cold? ›

Drinking it ice cold may hinder the digestive benefits of the lemon water. And it makes your body spend more energy trying to heat it up. But lemon water at warm or room temperature provides you with the most health benefits. It allows the enzymatic and energetic properties of the lemon their full flow.

Is lemon an anti inflammatory? ›

Lemons contain vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant, and are a source of plant compounds called flavonoids, which have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects.

Does lemon water interact with medications? ›

Do not ever drink grapefruit, orange, lemon juice along with medications as they are rich in flavonoid compounds that can affect metabolism and can in turn normal dose of a drug into a toxic overdose. Juices may also prevent drugs from getting absorbed into the blood completely.

What does rubbing lemon on your legs do? ›

Promotes even skin tone.

Due to the potential exfoliating properties of lemon juice, people use it to reduce hyperpigmentation. Exfoliation, after all, can help remove pigmented cells and even out your skin tone. "Lemon juice [also] contains citric acid and vitamin C, which can lighten the skin," says Mehr.

Does drinking lemon water cause frequent urination? ›

Citrus Might Be Your Bladder's Pet Peeve

Oranges, grapefruits, clementines, lemons, and limes are all acidic and can make it harder to control the urge to pee, whether you eat them or drink their juice.

What organ does lemon water help? ›

Lemon water ingested in the morning will help cleanse your liver. Lemon juice stimulates the liver to flush out all its toxins, reviving it like never before.

What is the best way to flush out your intestines? ›

Increase fiber intake through whole grains, fruits, and vegetables. Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water and other fluids. Use natural laxatives like herbal teas, aloe vera, and fermented foods. Try a saltwater flush or colonic irrigation under the guidance of a medical professional.

What is the best juice for cleaning intestines? ›

Best Juices for Colon Cleansing
  • Aloe Vera Juice. Aloe Vera is an excellent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent, which helps to cleanse the colon and liver. ...
  • Apple Juice. ...
  • Beetroot and Grapes Juice. ...
  • Pineapple and Kiwi Detox. ...
  • Spinach and Coconut Blend. ...
  • Lemon Juice. ...
  • Raw Veggies Juice. ...
  • Watermelon Juice.

Can lemon water cause joint pain? ›

Reduces inflammation

Joint inflammation is caused by the production of uric acid in the joints. Drinking lemon water may help to reduce inflammation. Lemon fruit is a rich source of nutrients, antioxidants, and enzymes that help to flush out toxins present in our body.

What is the fastest way to flush your kidneys? ›

How to cleanse the kidneys
  1. Drink more water. Drinking enough fluid every day is essential to a person's overall health. ...
  2. Reduce sodium intake. ...
  3. Make dietary changes.
Jun 5, 2019

Is lemon water good for diabetes? ›

Drinking lemon and cucumber water can be helpful for diabetes if it replaces sugar-sweetened beverages like sweet tea, soda, or sports drinks. It contains virtually no calories or sugar and may provide your body with small amounts of nutrients from the slices of cucumber and lemon.

How many pounds do you lose when you drink lemon water? ›

Lemon water does contain some additional nutrients from the lemon juice, such as vitamin C and antioxidants, but these are unlikely to have any effect on your weight. Additionally, the alkalizing effect of lemon juice has no clear effects on weight.

Why should you put a sliced lemon next to your bed at night? ›

The smell of the citrus fruit will help to open up your airway and fall asleep more easily. Lemons also provide stress relief. The scent is a natural mood enhancer, and is also helpful for lowering blood pressure. Both of these things will help you to have a more restful, undisturbed sleep.

What happens when you drink lemon water for 2 weeks? ›

Some proponents of lemon water claim that it aids digestion, detoxifies the liver, erases age spots, speeds up your metabolism, helps with depression and anxiety, relieves heartburn, wards off cancer, and reduces inflammation.

How much lemon juice should you put in your water? ›

To obtain the health benefits of drinking lemon water, experts recommend adding three-fourths of a cup of lemon juice to your water per day. A glass of lemon water first thing in the morning is an age-old remedy.

Should I brush after drinking lemon water? ›

Do not brush your teeth straight after drinking lemon water. You should allow your teeth to re-mineralize for 1hour before brushing. Brushing your teeth whilst under an acid attack will erode teeth even faster due to chemical wear from the acid softening the enamel, in conjunction with mechanical wear from brushing.

What should I eat after lemon water? ›

Drink the juice of one lemon in one cup of warm water first thing in the morning (on an empty stomach). 2. Make sure to wait 30 minutes before eating breakfast, as this will ensure your body gets the most energy and nutrients from the food you eat.

Should you rinse after lemon water? ›

After drinking the acidic lemon water, rinse your mouth with water straight away. This removes any acid that may remain on the tooth surface and reduces the acidity of the oral saliva.

How do I get rid of my lower belly fat? ›

To battle belly fat:
  1. Eat a healthy diet. Focus on plant-based foods, such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains, and choose lean sources of protein and low-fat dairy products. ...
  2. Replace sugary beverages. ...
  3. Keep portion sizes in check. ...
  4. Include physical activity in your daily routine.

What burns belly fat? ›

Here's how to whittle down where it matters most.
  • Try curbing carbs instead of fats. ...
  • Think eating plan, not diet. ...
  • Keep moving. ...
  • Lift weights. ...
  • Become a label reader. ...
  • Move away from processed foods. ...
  • Focus on the way your clothes fit more than reading a scale. ...
  • Hang out with health-focused friends.

What color is urine when your kidneys are failing? ›

When your kidneys are failing, a high concentration and accumulation of substances lead to brown, red, or purple urine. Studies suggest the urine color is due to abnormal protein or sugar as well as high numbers of cellular casts and red and white blood cells.

What are 5 drinks that help the kidneys? ›

Good beverages for people with kidney disease
  • Black coffee. Coffee, in moderation, is safe for people with kidney disease. ...
  • Unsweetened green tea. Green tea is lower in caffeine than coffee and full of antioxidants called polyphenols. ...
  • Low-sugar smoothies. ...
  • Infused water. ...
  • Cranberry juice. ...
  • Homemade ginger ale.
Oct 25, 2022

What drinks are hardest on kidneys? ›

Sodas. According to the American Kidney Fund, a recent study suggests that drinking two or more carbonated sodas, diet or regular, each day may increase your risk for chronic kidney disease. Carbonated and energy drinks have both been linked to the formation of kidney stones.

Does lemon burn fat in the tummy? ›

The answer to this is easy: No. Lemons do not have special fat-burning qualities, explains Czerwony.

How much lemon water should I drink a day to lose weight? ›

1 glass of lemon water will have nothing more than 6 calories. Hence, it is an effective drink for losing weight. In fact, if you replace fruits juices and soda drinks with lemon water, it can help in reducing your daily calorie intake by almost 200 calories.

How long does it take to lose weight with lemon water? ›

A glass of lemon water at different times of the day may help you lose weight and stay healthy by boosting your metabolism. All you need is 14 days, and you'll become the owner of a perfect body. You should take a pause for several days, and then you can continue the challenge for another 14 days.

What is the best time to take lemon water? ›

Lemon water is most effective if consumed first thing in the morning. It is recommended to add lemon juice to warm water because it helps extract vitamin C and polyphenols from the lemon and its peel. Also, how much lemon water you drink daily is important.

Does lemon water boost metabolism? ›

Both the lemon and water components of lemon water can boost your metabolism. When you drink cooler water, your body expends even more energy to heat it, so drinking a cool glass of lemon water regularly throughout the day could increase your metabolism, leading to weight loss.

What drink burns fat while you sleep? ›

You can drink ginger tea, cinnamon tea, fenugreek water, chamomile tea, or turmeric milk before bed as they may help improve your metabolism. Yes, drinking lemon water before bed may help burn fat at night.

What burns the most stomach fat? ›

1. Exercise: Vigorous exercise trims all your fat, including visceral fat. Get at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise at least 5 days a week. Walking counts, as long as it's brisk enough that you work up a sweat and breathe harder, with your heart rate faster than usual.

Does the 14 day lemon water diet work? ›

The lemon detox diet involves consuming just a lemon juice-based mixture for 1 or 2 weeks, with no solid foods. The diet aims to remove toxins and cleanse the body. However, scientists have found no evidence to support these claims, and the diet may be harmful in some cases.

What is the 5 day fat burning detox water challenge? ›

The five-day detox challenge is one of the most famous detox plans for a reason. It's simple: You eat a ton of vegetables, fruit, and healthy fats for five days straight, and then follow up with a three-day fruit juice fast to help get rid of toxins from your body.

How to prepare lemon water for flat tummy? ›

To prepare, add one lemon and a teaspoon of honey to a glass of warm water. It's best to drink on an empty stomach to activate digestion.


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