Monday, April 16, 2012

If you do one thing this week...


It is recommended by nationally known nutritionist Ann Louise Gittleman, author of "Fat Flush for Life" and other books to start your day with a hot glass of water flavored with lemon. The combination can benefit your body in numerous ways, including helping you to lose weight and keep hydrated, improving your digestion and upping your vitamin C intake. You can even spice up this morning drink to boost its benefits.

Types: Gittleman recommends combining the juice of half a lemon with 1 cup hot water. If you don't want to squeeze your own lemons, you can substitute 1 tablespoon lemon juice. Make sure to use 100-percent organic lemon juice. You can spice up this drink and further rev your metabolism by adding a pinch of ground cinnamon and a pinch of ground ginger, Gittleman says. Lemons will keep for up to 10 days at room temperature, so you can shop for them weekly. You also can store fresh lemon juice in an ice cube tray without losing any of its potency.

Function: Drinking lemon water first thing in the morning stimulates your digestive system, according to Louise Atkinson's "Daily Mail" article, "Lose Weight for Christmas with the Lemon Juice Diet." This improves your body's ability to absorb nutrients. Poor absorption of nutrients can cause you to feel hungry, even when you are not.

Effects: Lemon water cleanses your palate on the way down. Once in your body, it helps to gently flush your kidneys and your liver of wastes and toxins, says Gittleman. It also can help cleanse your lymphatic system, another body system that eliminates toxins.

Significance: Both lemons and water are on Gittleman's list of fat flush foods. Water helps you stay hydrated. Your body stores more fat when you are dehydrated because your kidneys need help from your liver to function when your body is in this state. This hampers the liver's ability to burn fat. Water also is a natural appetite suppressant. Being dehydrated, in contrast, can cause feelings of hunger. Lemons may help reduce cellulite because they stimulate blood flow to your skin and help your body flush out waste. Lemon also boosts your body's ability to metabolize fat, Gittleman says.

Benefits: Lemon juice provides a high amount of Vitamin C, notes Atkinson. One lemon gives 30.7 mg vitamin C, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The recommended daily amount is 75 mg for women and 90 mg for men. People who consume more vitamin C have more efficient digestive systems than people who don't. Lemon also increases acidity of your digestive system, which helps you better absorb calcium. Calcium absorption helps you lose weight, says Atkinson, because calcium is stored in fat cells. The more calcium in your fat cells, the easier it is to stimulate their burn. Vitamin C also boosts your immune system, helps prevent coronary heart disease, and lowers your risk for stroke, cataracts and gout. This antioxidant vitamin also may help lower cancer risk when consumed via fresh fruits, according to Oregon State University.

Potential: Adding a tablespoon of lemon juice along with some of the lemon's zest can provide 1,600 oxygen radical absorbency capacity, or ORAC, units to your diet, according to "Women's Health" magazine. An ORAC unit is a measurement developed by the National Institutes of Health to measure a food's antioxidant capacity. The higher the value, the higher the antioxidant benefits, such as fighting cell-damaging free radicals. One antioxidant lemon juice provides is eriocitrin, which may protect against oxidative stress in the liver.

Want to lose some weight? Studies show that water can improve the speed of your weight loss too. Here's how;

Hot water, like the heat of hot tea, causes the body to begin to detoxify. Stored toxins slow the metabolism. When you flood the body with hot water, this causes the muscular action in the stomach, liver and intestine which squeezes and releases toxins. This moves toxins out of the bowel, liver, lymph system, and out of the body. Water is quickly absorbed in extreme temperatures. This helps stabilize blood sugar, which will stop food cravings as well.

Lukewarm water is even good for suppressing the appetite by depressing the activity of the digestive system. Hunger pains diminish and you tend not to overeat. 

The key to health with anything is consistency. If you start your day with a glass of hot lemon water and drink a glass of lukewarm water 15 minutes before meals and snacks, you'll be on your way to losing 31 pounds this year if you stick with it. Statistics show that you will consume 104 calories less daily as a result of drinking water which over the course of a year, averages to about 31 unnecessary pounds.

Water facts:

- 75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated.
- 37% of Americans mistake the thirst sensation, which is weak for the hunger sensation triggering them to begin eating instead of drinking,
- Mild dehydration can slow the metabolism by 3%.
- Drinking just one glass of water can shut down the "midnight munchies."
- Lack of water is the number one trigger for daytime fatigue.
- 8 to 10 glasses of water can ease back and joint pain in 80% of sufferers.
- When you dropped just 2% in the body's necessary hydration you will likely experience fuzzy, short-term memory and have difficulty with basic math, focusing on printed work and computer media.
- Just by drinking five glasses of water daily you decrease the risk of colon cancer by 45%, reduce the risk of breast cancer by 79% and 50% less likely to develop bladder cancer.


  1. I would rather be overweight than give up coffee. Somethings just are NOT worth it. :)

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