The health benefits of lemon need no separate introduction. It is loaded with several essential nutrients that help boost immunity, skin health, gut health, promote weight loss and more. This is why you will find people including lemon in their diet in various ways. Some like to have lemon water early in the morning, while some add lemon juice to their salad. Then we have people who take a wedge of lemon along with their daily meal. For instance, we love squeezing lemon juice on dal before having it with rice or roti. We agree it enhances the flavours instantly, but did you know – adding lemon juice to any hot food may have a negative impact on our body? You heard us.
To understand the theory better, we approached some popular nutritionists from across India to understand the impact of lemon juice when added to any hot food. According to consultant nutritionist Rupali Datta, “Vitamin C does not degrade immediately, so if you squeeze the juice just as you eat, you will get the vitamin C. Even in hot water, it is the same. In fact, exposure to oxygen degrades the vitamin content of the fruit, over a period of time.”
Adding to this, Dr Namita Nadar, head nutritionist, Fortis Hospital Noida explained, “Vitamin C content in any citrus fruit is very heat sensitive. So, if a citrus fruit element is dropped in steaming hot food, the chemical gets destroyed completely. This will result in the negative effect of vitamin C.” Dr Nadar further stated, “Vitamin C also improves the immunity of our body and it helps fight infection. If mixed with hot food, it will help them decrease the ESI levels, which is inflammation in the body. So, lemon should be used at a normal temperature or in cold foods.”
This brings up the question – what is the correct way to enjoy the benefits of lemon? Fret not, we have found the answer for you. Nutritionist Juhi Kapoor took to her Instagram to share a note on how to add lemon juice to your daily meal. “Make sure whenever you’re using lemon on any food preparation, try to keep the food off the flame and let it cool down a little bit before you squeeze lemon onto it,” she wrote alongside a video post.
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Eat healthy, stay fit and yes, make informed decisions about the food you eat.
About Somdatta SahaExplorer- this is what Somdatta likes to call herself. Be it in terms of food, people or places, all she craves for is to know the unknown. A simple aglio olio pasta or daal-chawal and a good movie can make her day.