At this point, we should all know how important it is to stay hydrated throughout the day—and, sorry, sugary drinks don’t count. While most drinks can satisfy your thirst, not all of them will keep you hydrated and healthy. So if you’re looking to keep your overall health in mind with every sip, there is one drink that this dietitian recommends having every day: lemon water.
“The best thing to drink every day is lemon water first thing in the morning. Yes, before you reach for your coffee!” says registered dietitian Amy Shapiro, MS, RD of Real Nutrition and member of the Eat This, Not That! Medical Expert Board. (Related: One Major Side Effect of Drinking Your Coffee Before Breakfast, Expert Says.)
So, why lemon water?
For starters, lemon is a good source of antioxidant vitamin C, so squeezing some lemon juice into your water can serve up a solid dose of this beneficial vitamin.
“By adding lemon you add vitamin C which is a powerful antioxidant that not only helps boost immunity but also protects skin from free radicals and can prevent signs of aging (much like water does so together they are a super elixir). Vitamin C also helps to prevent stroke, heart disease,” says Shapiro. (Read more: What Taking Vitamin C Every Day Does to Your Body.)
Drinking lemon water every day won’t just support a healthy immune system—it can also support weight loss.
“Lemon is also a natural detoxifier that supports your liver and may also promote weight loss due to the abundance of polyphenols that balance blood sugar levels. Add a dash of cayenne for a boost in metabolism too!” she adds.
Shapiro not only recommends adding lemon water to your routine every day, but also suggests drinking it in the morning to reap the most benefits:
“We get dehydrated overnight as we breathe and sweat for 8+ hours. So rehydrating is super important and getting started the first thing allows for improved energy and focus,” says Shapiro.
Double down on your health by also starting your morning with any of these 19 High Protein Breakfasts That Keep You Full.
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