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When I moved to Southern California I had dreams of someday having beautiful backyard and growing my own fruits and vegetables. Coming from the Midwest, the growing season was pretty short, so the backyard growing options were somewhat limited. When I was younger, my family would grow tomatoes, cucumbers and the occasional pepper, but fruit was much trickier to muster. Unless you had an orchard (which I did not) fruit trees were a bit out of reach.

Fast forward to when I was a newlywed and living in a condo with my husband. I would drive around and look longingly out the window at the yards with beautiful citrus trees, full with fruit. The colors. The abundance of fruit. The smells. I was so envious!

So imagine my delight when we moved into our current home and our realtor presented us with a lemon tree as a moving in gift. I was determined to keep that little lemon tree alive.  It kept watch (from a safe distance) as our yard underwent a major renovation shortly after we settled into the house. Then, upon completion of the project (a labor of love, literally and figuratively, as my daughter surprised us and arrived early, before the project was completed, but I digress) that lovely little lemon tree was planted. To my delight, our budget allowed for us to give the little lemon tree 2 friends, an orange tree and a lime tree. My little grove was born!

Let me get one thing clear for you, I do NOT have a green thumb. In fact, I tell just about anyone who tries to bring a plant into my house knows that it’s a recipe for disaster. Plants come into my house to die.  But the backyard, well, that’s quite a different story. For some reason, whatever is planted back there grows with wild abandon. Take, for example, the lemon tree. The tree is never without fruit.  Not just one or two little lemons. Nope, I’m talking dozens and dozens of lemons (some the size of grapefruits) all year round!

After discovering that I have a knack for growing lemons, it was time to explore what to do with them. One of my favorite things is to squeeze a little into my water glass. Lemon water has amazing benefits for the body and it helps to balance your healthy vibe!

5 reasons to start your day with a squeeze of lemon (adapted from The Cleveland Clinic)

  1.  Helps with digestion– Acid helps to break down the food you eat. That’s why there is so much of it the stomach. Lemons contain acid.  Therefore, drinking some lemon water may help to supplement the stomach acids to help with digestion. By the way, did you know that stomach acid declines as we get older?  Even more reason to squeeze some lemon into your next glass of water.
  2. Vitamin C for the win– The juice of half a lemon in a glass of water adds about a sixth of the daily recommended vitamin C. We all know how good Vitamin C is for our bodies, right? It helps protect us from cell damage and repair injury.
  3. A Healthy Habit & Hydration– Most of us do not drink enough water every day. Instead we often opt for higher calorie drinks (think OJ, soda, etc).  What would happen to your body, your vibe and waist, if you swapped a morning glass of juice for a refreshing glass of lemon water? I know my pants are thanking me for adopting this daily habit!
  4. Prevents “rusting”– Lemons contain phytonutrients (yup, I had to look that one up too). These are substances that protect the body against disease. Phytonutrients, like those in lemons, have power antioxidant properties, which help prevent us from oxidizing or “rusting” from the inside out. That’s a win-win for a vibrant and healthy vibe!
  5. Vibe boost anyone?– Lemon water in the morning can boost energy levels without the crash that comes with the morning caffeine. Lemons contain negative-charged ions (getting some science in for the day) that enter the digestive tract and help increase energy levels. Your mood and your morning To-Do list will thank you.

As a busy, working- mom, I’ll take all the multi-tasking I can get, and that includes from my food.  Have I convinced you to boost your healthy vibe with a splash of lemon? I’ve got plenty of lemons to share. Lemons kick butt in so many amazing ways.

Cheers to your healthy vibes! What’s your favorite way to enjoy life with a splash of lemon?

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