Lemon: Nutrition Facts and Health Benefits

Lemon: Nutrition Facts and Health Benefits

Overview

Undeniably, lemon is one of the most popular fruits you can see in any corner of the world.

In the science term, lemon is called “Citrus lemon” and it is a member of Citrus fruits which have many great applications in the medicinal world.

The origin of lemon is claimed to come from the combination of the citron and the lime. Its first cultivation is believed to have traced back to over 2,000 years in India or China.

Nevertheless, not until the 11th century did lemon make its first appearance in Europe and Africa.

Then, lemon came to the Americas thanks to Christopher Columbus’s voyage.

Nowadays, its production becomes world-wide, with the United States being the largest producer, followed by Italy and Spain.

Few people eat lemon directly because of its sourness. Instead, lemon is often used in the form of the juice or combined with other ingredients to improve the flavor.

For long, lemon has been well-known to be abundant in vitamin C and many other important nutrients for human health.

This article will examine lemon nutrition facts first.

Nutrition Facts

Lemon - Nutrition Facts

The main content of lemon is water that makes up for nearly 90 percent (1).

Carbohydrates also have a considerable amount with approximately 10 percent, whereas there are such moderate amounts of protein and fat in a lemon.

One of the most important elements of lemon is fiber which is responsible for many lemon health benefits (2).

Besides, when it comes to lemon, it is necessary to think of vitamins immediately.

100 grams of lemon provides about 53mg of vitamin C which is very beneficial for our immunity.

Vitamin B6 in lemon will aid the transformation of foods into the energy for the body.

Lemon also contains other minerals, such as magnesium, potassium and phosphorus. All of them make great contributions to remaining healthy.

The profile of lemon nutrition facts becomes more impressive when some plant compounds are found, such as citric acid, diosmin, or D-Limonene.

Health Benefits of Lemon

There is a close association between lemon nutrition facts and lemon health benefits.

Below are top 10 health benefits of lemon that are the results of many-year research to find out how beneficial this citrus fruit can be to human health.

1. Kidney Stone Prevention

Kidney stones are the result of the crystallization of waste products in our kidneys. Throughout time, they accumulate and develop into small lumps.

Kidney stones are very annoying and they appear repeatedly.

Fortunately, you can get rid of them with a simple ingredient, lemon. To reduce the formation of kidney stones is also one of the best health benefits of lemon.

The amount of citric acid in lemon can enhance the urine pH level and volume. This makes it less favorable for kidney stones to develop (3) (4).

The suggestion is that the consumption of only 4 oz of lemon juice on a daily basis is sufficient to lower the risk of kidney stones in patients (5) (6).

In fact, the real efficiency of lemon juice on preventing kidney stones still needs further examining.

Bottom Line: Lemon juice is effective in lowering the risk of kidney stones, but more studies are still needed.

2. Digestion

Lemon - Digestion

The majority of fiber found in lemons is soluble which constitutes many health benefits of lemon, one of which is to enhance the digestive system.

Soluble fiber is claimed to foster the gut health and impede the way the starches and sugars are digested (7) (8).

Nevertheless, these lemon health benefits are effective only when you consume its skin and pulp.

Therefore, if you use lemon juice, you will not benefit from lemon’s high content of fiber.

Bottom Line: With a great amount of soluble fiber, lemon can promote the digestion, but only when you consume the pulp and skin.

3. Anemia

Anemia refers to the shortage of red blood cells and one of the main causes for this problem is the deficiency of iron.

One of the best health benefits of lemon is to fight against anemia effectively.

It is true that lemon can provide your body with a certain amount of iron, but what is really outstanding about lemon is the fact that it aids the way your body absorbs iron from foods (9) (10).

For example, chicken, meat and fish are great sources of iron. Nevertheless, your body has some difficulties absorbing iron from them.

With the participation of citric acid and vitamin C from lemon, this process can become easier.

Bottom Line: In addition to its content of iron, lemon supplies citric acid and vitamin C to support the absorption of iron from other foods to fight against anemia.

4. Weight Loss

100 grams of lemon provides you with only 29 calories, which makes it a low calorie fruit.

Therefore, it is simple to recognise that one of the most important health benefits of lemon is to aid weight loss.

In addition, the presence of soluble pectin fiber may increase the time you feel full. As a result, your consumption of foods declines significantly.

Some studies reveal that lemon is useful to help you stop putting on more weight thanks to its content of plant compounds (11) (12).

In an experiment, the extract of polyphenols from lemon peel was given to mice.

The result showed that these mice were less likely to gain weight and fat than others (13).

Bottom Line: Based on some success got from animal studies, it is hopeful that lemon can give a great support to weight loss.

5. Cardiovascular Disease

Cardiovascular disease is one of the leading causes for death in the world. It includes both strokes and heart attacks.

In fact, the consumption of vegetables and fruits that contain a high amount of vitamin C can lower the risk of cardiovascular disease (14).

And without a doubt, lemon is abundant in vitamin C. Thus, one of the best lemon health benefits is to help you stay away from heart disease.

Vitamin C, however, is not the only contributor.

Plant compounds and fiber take part in the prevention against cardiovascular disease as well (15) (16).

Bottom Line: With considerable amounts of vitamin C, fiber and plant compounds, lemon is beneficial for the heart health.

6. Immunity

Lemon - Immunity

When it comes to lemon health benefits, it will be a big mistake if we forget about its effects on immunity.

Vitamin C has been beneficial for our immune system. It is a shield to protect our body from virus and bacteria (17).

Many people also use lemon juice as a great cure for sore throat and common colds.

7. Anti-Cancer

Undoubtedly, when you consume more vegetables and fruits, you can avoid many health problems, including serious ones like cancer.

There are some research confirming the effectiveness of citrus fruit in preventing cancer, although some other are against this statement (18) (19).

Some of the most important elements responsible for these health benefits of lemon are plant compounds, namely, d-limonene and hesperidin (20) (21) (22).

Bottom Line: More research needs doing in humans, but lemon is still considered as a promising anti-cancer agent.

8. Skin Care

Despite its acidity, lemon is still one of the most popular fruits used to foster the condition of human skin (23).

Its richness of vitamin C will improve the color, texture and elasticity of your skin significantly.

Health benefits of lemon can be common in many home remedies for skin problems, from acne, eczema to oxidative stress (24).

Furthermore, lemon juice can be used to alleviate painful feelings caused by sunburn or bee stings.

Note: In general, if you want to make your skin glow, white and free from acne, try following these steps regularly:

  • Prepare fresh juice of lemon, tomato and cucumber.
  • Take one spoon of each type of juice and mix them together.
  • Pour one spoon of sandalwood powder into the paste.
  • After mixing the paste well, you had better apply it over your skin.
  • After about 20 minutes, use warm water to clean your skin.
  • Later, you can moisturize your skin with some lotion.

9. Blood Circulation

Among top health benefits of lemon, it is important to mention the improvement in the blood circulation.

Plant compounds in lemon, such as diosmin, have strong antioxidant qualities to cope with chronic inflammation in your blood vessels (25).

Another compound – hesperidin – can enhance the blood vessels and bring more blood to other parts of our body (26).

Lemon is also used to keep you safe from atherosclerosis (27).

Bottom Line: Because of the richness of antioxidant plant compounds, lemon is useful to improve the blood circulation.

10. Dental Care

Lemon - Dental Care

The last among top lemon health benefits that you should remember is to strengthen the dental health in general.

Lemon juice can give you a quick relief from tooth pain and put an immediate end to gum bleeding (28).

Besides, the use of lemon is popular to erase bad breath quickly.

Those who have problems with the color of their teeth due to smoking or alcohol use can make use of lemon to regain their teeth’s beauty.

Side Effects

There is no doubt about amazing health benefits of lemon on different parts of our body.

However, it is possible that this fruit will lead to some unwanted situations if you consume it in the wrong way.

The excessive intake of lemon juice might cause you to experience some annoying problems

Firstly, while it is true that lemon has positive effects on our dental health in general, too much lemon water may supply an overload of acid in the mouth.

As a consequence, you might worsen the tooth erosion.

Secondly, the considerable amount of vitamin C makes lemon a great support for urine production.

This means that lemon helps improve the removal of excess fluid from your body.

Nevertheless, when you remove too much water, your body might suffer from dehydration.

This is the main reason for many other health problems.

Besides, lemon water is a feasible cause for heartburn.

If you have already suffered from it, lemon will put your health at greater risk.

To sum up, in order that you can gain the best health benefits of lemon, it is imperative that you consume it with the advice of professionals or doctors.

Disclaim: The effectiveness from using these foods on certain problems and diseases will be depended on the body condition of the applicant.

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