Lemons are probably the 8th wonder of the world, if we are being honest. Either that or they are pretty close. The uses and benefits of lemons are endless. This multi-purpose fruit has been in use (and re-used) throughout so many ages for a good number of things.
Lemons, with their bright yellow hue, eye-like shape, and alkaline taste, are one of those foods that are used mainly outside the human body than inside it.
It should not come as a surprise to you that something can be ingested and used to wash your car simultaneously (look at coke). But there are actually way more uses to these citrus wonders than we give them credit for.
When life gives you lemons, there are a lot more incredible things to make besides lemonade. Here are 12 fascinating uses of lemons as well as the benefits that you probably did not know about.
1. Lemon can be used for cooking
You probably already knew this as one of the primary uses of lemons, but what you may not know is that there is a lot more to it.
Let us take rice as an example. Did you know that when cooking rice, you can add lemons to give extra flavor? Adding lemons can also prevent the rice grains from sticking to each other and to the bottom of the pot? I bet you did not. It works like magic! You really should try it out.
You also need to try using lemons to boil your eggs, so they can cook more evenly and are easier to peel.
2. Cleaning and polishing different surfaces (+ vinegar, salt, or soda)
The cleansing properties of lemons are not news at all. One of its most common uses is as a cleaning agent; in detergents and dishwashing soaps.
But did you know that a simple mixture of lemons, vinegar, some salt (and maybe caustic soda for foaming) will create an epic multi-purpose surface cleanser? Probably not. This mixture can clean pretty much every kind and texture of surface that you know.
You can also polish different surfaces, such as your sink or furniture, by slicing a lemon open and sprinkling it with a bit of salt. The ensuing scrub will give them that extra sunlit sheen. Sparkle, sparkle!
3. Lemon is used for acid reflux treatment (+ vinegar)
Acid reflux in the stomach is a prevalent issue among many people, especially older people. (1)
It happens when the gastric juice in the small intestine overflows and spreads to other organs, sometimes even going back up the throat. The side effects of this include indigestion, nausea, and, yes, heartburns.
Acid reflux and the many health complications that result from it can go away by ingesting a simple mix of lemon juice and vinegar.
This is because of its alkaline properties, which balance out the more acidic gastric juice and even out your gut environment. (2)
4. Cough remedy (+ honey and hot water)
Do you have a cold? Or have you been down with some kind of flu that induces a terrible cough? You do not have to worry because lemons will save the day yet again.
The bacteria that cause dry cough during a cold and throat soreness are very unreceptive to extreme environments.
Lemons are highly acidic before digestion, where they get neutralized and become alkaline. This acidic property is something that cough-inducing microorganisms hate. Coupled with the heat from hot water, the cough won’t stand a chance.
But it is necessary to add honey, which acts as a catalyst and softener so that the mixture doesn’t burn your throat.
5. Hair of the dog (+ warm water or tea)
For those who do not know what this is, Hair of the Dog is another name for an effective ‘hangover remedy’ that many people take to get rid of terrible hangovers.
Lemons are commonly used to make a substantial variation of Hair of the Dog, and the recipe is quite simple!
Just boil a cup or two of water and add tea if you like. To the result, cut a lemon in two and squeeze in one half. There you go; now you get to enjoy some hair of the dog that is neither gross nor complex.
Sometimes, you wake up feeling that terrible coupling of headache and nausea from maybe partying too hard the night before. It is because your body lost a lot of water and nutrition from drinking too much.
Lemons are a substantial source of Vitamin C, a significant nutrient that causes hangover problems when deficient. They also enhance your source of hydration by providing electrolytes.
6. Lemon is used to make fragrance
The truth of the matter is that lemons smell fantastic. So, it shouldn’t surprise you that one of the most vital household uses of lemons is as a fragrance or additive thereof.
You can add lemon juice to an air-freshener bottle along with several flowers and spices such as Rosemary, Moringa leaves. A mixture like this makes a very nice-smelling fragrant spray.
You could also cut up your lemons and put them in scented water and just let the mixture stand. This addition will add a unique fragrance and prevent insects from laying eggs in the water.
7. Getting rid of spots and other skin blemishes (+ some salt)
If you are prone to acne, black spots, and other skin blemishes that you don’t like, worry no more because your solution is as easy as a simple lemon scrub.
You can get rid of dark pits, knees, elbows, and even scars by preparing a lemon scrub. You can do this by cutting your lemon in half and dipping the exposed part in salt. You can now proceed to rub all affected areas with the lemon scrub thoroughly.
For all-around body treatment, you can just slice the whole fruit up in your bathing water.
8. Skin toner and lightener
Of all the benefits of lemons on the skin, the toning effect is one most helpful use of lemon. The antioxidants in lemons are beneficial to the skin in two ways.
You can add the lemon juice to a homemade face rub, which will lighten the skin around your face and help reduce acne by exfoliating dead skin.
You could also drink lemon juice to reduce the excess disintegration of skin cells, which would leave you with a glowing skin tone.
9. Healthy nails
This is one of the fascinating uses of lemons. Did you know that when you soak your nails in a bowl of lemon juice, it actually improves their sheen and strength? (3)
So, next time your fingernails break for the sake of being too fragile, remember to get those lemons.
10. In-body benefits
Let us not forget the fascinating uses of lemons when they are ingested.
Lemons are antioxidants as they contain Vitamin C, which discourages the development of cell-damaging free radicals. We can find the effect of this throughout the body, from clearer skin to improved bowel movements.
Lemons really do more than we give them credit for. They can encourage fresh breath and can also prevent kidney stones. You can either take your lemons directly, in a concoction with tea or vinegar, or boil the whole lemon—with the rind—in ordinary or herbal water.
11. Lemon supports weight loss
Weight Loss is another one of the fascinating uses of lemons.We can not tell how this works exactly but drinking lemon juice before a meal can do wonders in helping you lose a considerable amount of weight.
So, if you are on a diet plan, you can drink lemon juice to ensure that you reach your body goals even faster. The benefits of lemon are endless.
12. Lemon can prevent untimely spikes in blood sugar
Lemon juice comprises vitamins that can balance certain hormones in the body. This balance results in the prevention of certain hormone-related diseases, one of which is diabetes.
When you drink lemon juice (straight or mixed), the glucose levels in your body drastically reduce. This results in your body producing more insulin naturally.
This, combined with weight loss, will reduce your chances of getting diabetes. (4)