Lemons have been cultivated in China and India for 2,500 years. They are delicious for use in cooking and well-known as cleaning agents. In addition, lemons have always been used as medicine. Here are some of their best known medicinal applications:
1. Improve Skin Hyper-Pigmentation
Lemons contain citric acid, which has natural skin lightening properties. To make a lightening mask to treat dark spots, apply one teaspoon each of lemon juice, yogurt, and honey to the skin once a day for 20 minutes. Results appear slowly, but over time you will see improvement. During the time you use lemon on the skin, apply a good sunscreen and avoid too much exposure to sun. Lemon makes your skin more light sensitive.
2. Treat Acne and Acne Scars
Because lemons have a low pH, they are good antibacterial agents. They are thought to be effective in killing the bacteria that causes acne, as well as diminishing scars. To maximize effectiveness, use full strength, undiluted lemon juice. Lemon juice can also dry the skin, so follow with a good moisturizer.
3. Relieve Cold Symptoms and Sore Throat
Lemons are high in vitamin C, which strengthens the immune system and accelerates recovery from infection. Add lemon and honey to tea to for cold symptoms and sore throats. Use this remedy three to four times daily.
4. Treat Dandruff
Combine lemon and yogurt to make a hair mask that gets rid of dandruff. You can add honey or a few drops of almond oil to prevent the hair from drying out. Use the mask after washing and rinsing the hair. Rub in the mask, leave it on for ten to fifteen minutes, then rinse it out. Use this remedy two to three times a week.
5. Ease Constipation and Improves Digestion
Drink a glass of warm water with the juice of half a lemon each morning. This remedy helps the bowels move, prevents constipation, and enhances digestion.
6. Relieves Insect Bites
The acid in lemon juice helps relieve the pain and itching of insect bites. Just apply the juice directly to the skin to soothe and flight infection.
7. Whiten Teeth
Combine the juice of one-quarter lemon with two tablespoons apple cider vinegar. Dip your toothbrush in the mixture, brush and rinse your mouth thoroughly. This mixture removes wine, coffee and nicotine stains. Because acidity can hurt the enamel of your teeth, use this treatment no more than once a week, and don’t leave the mixture on the teeth too long.
8. Lemons for Diabetes
Although they are acidic, lemons alkalize your body when eaten. Add them to your diet to help control blood glucose levels. Adding acid to any food actually lowers its glycemic index.
9. Prevent Kidney Stones
People who are prone to kidney stones can reduce recurrences and prevent new calcium oxalate stone formation by drinking water with lemon juice every day.
10. Strengthen and Whiten Fingernails
After cleaning the nails and removing any polish, soak your fingernails in lemon juice for a few minutes, then wash your hands. Follow with a good moisturizing lotion to prevent drying.
Always select lemons that are fully ripened with a bright yellow color, to ensure a high level of antioxidants. Lemons that are heavy for their size tend to have thin skin with more flesh and juice. Lemons stay fresh in the refrigerator for four weeks, or at room temperature for about a week.