Have you ever dipped an apple into lemon juice to prevent it from browning? That browning process is called oxidation, and the same thing happens inside our bodies. Lemons minimize the damage caused by oxygen exposure because they are a rich source of antioxidants.
Lemons are a one ingredient fix for many health and beauty needs. Studies indicate that lemons protect against many diseases such as cancer, heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes and kidney stones. Jazzercise Founder and CEO Judi Sheppard Missett recommends an at-home facial made with fresh lemons. The scent alone will put a gleam in your eye.
The bacteria-fighting benefits of lemon juice improve digestion and support your immune system. Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is an antioxidant, and four ounces of fresh lemon juice contain 93 percent of your daily value. Lemons also have a low pH level, which qualifies them as antibacterial. This aids in digestion, and may help fight H. Pylori, a bacteria that causes ulcers.
Studies indicate that lemons and other citrus fruits have naturally occurring substances that may have cancer fighting properties. Modified citrus pectin is a fiber that makes it difficult for cancer cells to break off and spread. Limonoids, found in the zest, are capable of slowing cancer cell growth and killing cancer cells.
Flush with Lemons
The citric acid in lemons neutralizes urine, and prevents small kidney and bladder stones from getting larger. One study indicates that one half of a cup of fresh lemon juice daily packs as much citric acid as conventional drug therapy.
When Life Gives You Lemons
Make sugar-free lemonade. Add the juice of half a lemon to a glass of water and drink twice a day. Squeeze fresh juice over steamed vegetables, or into soups and stews. Tuck lemon slices into fish or chicken before baking, steaming or poaching. For a quick salad dressing, zest one lemon, and juice half of it. Whisk in six tablespoons of olive oil, 1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard, and a pinch of salt and pepper.
Rub lemon slices on your skin and leave overnight. The alpha hydroxy in lemons acts as a natural peel, and the antibacterial properties heal acne. The scent of lemon boosts your mood, and sharpens your thinking skills.
Judi Sheppard Missett, who turned her love of jazz dance into a worldwide dance exercise phenomenon, founded the Jazzercise dance fitness program in 1969. She has advanced the business opportunities of women and men in the fitness industry by growing the program into an international franchise business that today, hosts a network of 7,800 instructors teaching more than 32,000 classes weekly in 32 countries.
The workout program, which offers a fusion of jazz dance, resistance training, Pilates, yoga, cardio box and Latin style movements, has positively affected millions of people worldwide. Benefits include increased cardiovascular endurance, strength, and flexibility, as well as an overall "feel good" factor. Additional Jazzercise programs include Junior Jazzercise, Jazzercise Lite and Personal Touch. For more information on Jazzercise go to jazzercise.com or call (800)FIT-IS-IT or (760)476-1750.