I am the little yellow fruit that is oval in shape, yellow in colour and has a distinct taste that will cleanse any palate. I am lemon, a small evergreen tree native to Asia, and the tree’s oblong yellow fruit. The fruit is used for culinary and non-culinary purposes throughout the world, primarily for its juice.
Lemons are thought to have originated in northern India, and were later introduced into Assyria, where they were discovered by soldiers serving Alexander the Great, who took them back to Greece. The lemon later reached the Mediterranean after the Romans discovered a direct sea route from the southern end of the Red Sea to India. The Arabs were largely responsible for the cultivation of the fruit in the Mediterranean region.
Christopher Columbus introduced citrus trees to the Island of Haiti in 1493 during his second voyage, by planting the seed of the lemon, as well as other citrus trees in Haiti’s lush soil. Documented records show that citrus trees eventually became well established by the Spanish in coastal South Carolina and Saint Augustine, Florida by the year 1563.
Lemon and its many health benefits:-
- Lemon juice lightens dark spots and blemishes like acne scars and marks, they are embarrassing on a pain to get rid of. Lemon juice’s citric acid gradually fades spots and evens your skin tone.
- The acidic yellow fruit can also be used as a teeth whitening agent, professional teeth whitening treatments can cost a fortune. Save yourself a lot of money and time with a homemade teeth whitener using baking soda and lemon juice. Simply mix the two ingredients into a bubbly solution and put onto your teeth with a cotton bud, leave on for no more than one minute (the acid is strong enough to break down tooth enamel) and gently scrub off with a toothbrush.
- Lemon and your skin- use a cotton swab with a little lemon juice is just as effective as other facial treatments for oily skin. This should be done before going to bed and should be removed with water the following morning.
- Another overnight beauty treatment that only requires slicing open a lemon is an exfoliant for chapped lips. Rub the fruit onto your lips, then wash off the next morning. The lemon juice will remove any dead skin cells so that your lipstick goes on super smooth.
- If you are unsure about what is lurking inside your favorite face or body wash, you can always be certain with a homemade cleanser made out of lemon juice, yogurt and an essential oil like lavender or chamomile. Massage the cleanser into your skin to remove dirt and bacteria, while moisturization takes place.
- There are tons of nail hardeners on the shelves at local cosmetic stores, but one can get the same results, and naturally by using olive oil and lemon juice. The solution will not only treat weak and brittle nails, but it will also whiten yellowing nails.
Lemon is also known to purify the blood, strengthens the immune system, alleviates headaches and dizziness, hiccups, combats gas, treats heart palpitations (irregular heart beat), prevents and treats cancer, syphilis and tuberculosis. Lemon is considered as “one of natures’ greatest gifts”
For a small fruit, lemon is surely advantageous to the body and should always be a priority on any grocery list. It reduces the cost of pharmaceutical visits and enhances the body’s innate beauty, what more can we ask for but this acidic yellow fruit.