Tawid News Magazine

Lemons for good and bad health

Mang Maing’s wife has become chubby these days, fellas.

Imagine, she has ballooned from 55 to 78 kilogram!

Well, she loves to eat rice, meat and dessert, Mang Maing says.

Now, the big problem is that she is scheduled to attend a high school reunion this coming December.

“I must get back to 55 kilos by December,” she says.

And so Mang Maing made a list of things she should do: cut off rice, meat, sweets and softdrink consumption plus exercise regularly. Mang Maing is so delighted that she does some of these things and lately, she starts buying lemons. She would chop the lemons and soak them in a pitcher of water.

“What will you do with that?” Mang Maing asks.

“I’ll drink it before bedtime, dear, it helps me reduce,” she says.

“That remains to be seen,” Mang Maing quips.

And so, Mang Maing’s kitchen is now full of lemons.

What’s in lemons, fellas?

Researches say that lemons are high in vitamin C, fiber and various beneficial plant compounds.

Now, let’s take a look how lemons benefit or destroy you.

First, lemons are a good source of vitamin C. One lemon provides about 31 mg of vitamin C, which is 51% of the reference daily intake (RDI). Research shows that eating fruits and vegetables rich in vitamin C reduces your risk of heart disease and stroke. However, it’s not only the vitamin C that is thought to be good for your heart. The fiber and plant compounds in lemons could also significantly lower some risk factors for heart disease.

Second, lemons are often promoted as a weight loss food, and there are a few theories as to why this is. One common theory is that the soluble pectin fiber in them expands in your stomach, helping you feel full for longer.

That said, not many people eat lemons whole. And because lemon juice contains no pectin, lemon juice drinks will not promote fullness in the same way.

Third, lemons help prevent or treat kidney stones. Kidney stones are small lumps that form when waste products crystallize and build up in your kidneys. Citric acid may help prevent kidney stones by increasing urine volume and increasing urine pH, creating a less favorable environment for kidney stone formation. Just 1/2-cup (4 ounces or 125 ml) of lemon juice per day may provide enough citric acid to help prevent stone formation in people who have already had them.

Fourth, lemons are anti-anemia. Iron deficiency anemia is quite common. It occurs when you don’t get enough iron from the foods you eat. Lemons contain some iron, but they primarily prevent anemia by improving your absorption of iron from plant foods.
Because lemons contain both vitamin C and citric acid, they may protect against anemia by ensuring that you absorb as much iron as possible from your diet.

Fifth, lemons reduce the risk of cancer. Some observational studies have found that people who eat the most citrus fruit have a lower risk of cancer. In test-tube studies, many compounds from lemons have killed cancer cells. Some researchers think that plant compounds found in lemons — such as limonene and naringenin — could have anticancer effects.

Sixth, lemons improve digestive health. Lemons are made up of about 10% carbs, mostly in the form of soluble fiber and simple sugars. The main fiber in lemons is pectin, a form of soluble fiber linked to multiple health benefits.

Soluble fiber can improve gut health and slow the digestion of sugars and starches. These effects may result in reduced blood sugar levels. However, to get the benefits of fiber from lemons, you need to eat the pulp. People who drink lemon juice, without the fiber found in the pulp, will miss out on the benefits of the fiber.

But lemons are not always helpful to health, fellas.

Lemon juice, like many fruit juices, is acidic. This means when we drink it, it can erode our teeth. In fact, lemon juice has a pH level of 2-3 which means it is causing harm to our teeth because liquids with a pH level under 4 have been proven to negatively impact our dental health. Once your enamel has been weakened by acidic substances like lemon juice, it needs time to recover. This means you should wait at least 30 minutes after drinking or eating acidic drink or food to prevent brushing your enamel away accidentally. Without healthy and strong enamel protecting your teeth, they’re more prone to decay or getting cavities.

So, to avoid teeth erosion, what should be done, ?

Limit the amount you drink. The less regular exposure to acid, the stronger your teeth will remain.

Use a straw. Using a straw can help make sure your lemon water goes down with minimal contact with your teeth.

Rinse your mouth with water. It washes away the acid that’s left hanging onto your teeth.

Brush and floss regularly. The best way to keep our teeth healthy is to make sure you brush your teeth twice a day and floss once per day. This will ensure that there’s nothing left on your teeth to cause problems. Just make sure to give your teeth at least 30 minutes to recover after drinking sodas, fruit juices and any other acidic beverages. ●

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