This do-it-at-home drink will provide an easy solution to electrolyte replenishment, hydrate your body, and harnesses the many benefits of lemon and its antioxidants, nutrients, and components to boost your health. It also adds some flavour to plain water.
Why is Water Important for Our Body?
Water is an essential part of our body, comprising up to 60% of the human body and a major constituent in every component. The brain and heart are composed of 73% water, the lungs 83%, skin at 64%, muscles at 79%, and bones are 31%. Water regulates body temperature through sweating and respiration, delivers oxygen and nutrients around the body (in blood), provides lubrication for joint movement, flushes body of waste, is needed by the brain to produce essential neurotransmitters and hormones, and is vital to the very shape and life of any cell. Hydration also plays a huge factor in maintaining your immune system as it shuttles nutrients to your cells and flushes out toxins and waste! (1).
Humans can ingest water through drinking water or beverages, or through ingesting water that is present in foods. Drinking typically represents 70-80% of total fluid intake while water from food only represents 20-30%. The repercussions of not staying hydrated is severe and recent literature suggests that a drop of just 1-2% hydration can impair cognitive performance. (2).
Why are Electrolytes Important for Our Body?
However, water by itself does not create optimal hydration. Your body needs electrolytes as well in order to perform many of the functions where water is used. An electrolyte is a substance which conducts electricity when dissolved in water. Common electrolytes include potassium (K+), sodium (Na+), calcium (Ca 2+), magnesium (Mg 2+), and chloride (Cl-).
All life requires maintaining correct electrolyte balances as they affect and regulate hydration, blood pH, and nerve and muscle function. Muscle and neuron tissue are considered electric tissue because they rely on the movement of electrolytes entering and leaving their cells in order to activate. For example, muscle contractions are dependent on calcium (Ca 2+), sodium (Na +), magnesium (Mg 2+) and potassium (K+). Imbalances in these three electrolytes could cause muscle weakness or cramping (3).
The Benefits of Lemon and Salt Water
The addition of some fresh lemon juice along with a dash of sea salt into some warm water creates a healthy and convenient drink that is filled with electrolytes and provides some amazing natural benefits of lemon as well.
Sea salt is sodium chloride, which dissociates in water to provide the body with sodium and chloride ions (electrolytes). The addition of lemon provides some potassium, calcium, and magnesium as well.
Lemon juice is also great for digestion as it provides acidity needed for the stomach to break down food consumed throughout the day for maximum nutrient extraction. It also contains good amounts of a superhero nutrient: Vitamin C. In the body, vitamin C acts as an antioxidant and protects cells from damage caused from free radicals and prevents oxidative damage. It also stimulates the production of white blood cells which protects the body against infection (4), is an essential part of our skin’s defense system (5), and helps iron absorption by converting poor sources of iron to more bioavailable forms (6). Vitamin C is also essential to the production of collagen, an important protein needed for providing structural support in connective, muscle, and skin tissue. Vitamin C has the potential to accelerate bone healing through increase type 1 collagen synthesis (7).
How to Make
To make this super simple drink, just combine a dash of sea salt (up to a quarter teaspoon) with some warm water, stir, and then squeeze in as much lemon juice as you can handle (we recommend at least 1 quarter to 1 half of a lemon). Throw the juiced lemon in the cup afterwards so you can get maximum extraction. Drinking this when you wake up as part of your morning routine can ensure that you start your day hydrated with all the aforementioned benefits to your body with a simple drink.