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Home arrow Health arrow Diabetes arrow Is Lemon Water Good for People With Diabetes?

Is Lemon Water Good for People With Diabetes?

Written by Edibel Quintero, RD
Fact checked by Rosmy Barrios, MD
Last update: March 17, 2023
7 min read 1191 Views 0 Comments
clock 7 eye 1191 comments 0

Do you know that the American diabetes association considers lemon to be a diabetes superfood? Read on to find the health benefits of lemon for people with diabetes.

is lemon water good for diabetes

Diabetes develops when your body’s cells are unable to absorb sugar (glucose) and utilize it for energy. This causes an accumulation of excess sugar in your system. 

If you suffer from diabetes, either your pancreas does not produce any or enough insulin, or it produces insulin, but your body’s cells do not respond to it and cannot utilize it appropriately. If glucose cannot enter your body’s cells, it remains in your bloodstream, raising your blood glucose level.

One of the most crucial things people with diabetes can do to maintain good blood sugar levels and lessen their symptoms over the long and short term is to eat a balanced diet.

If you replace sugar-sweetened drinks like soda, sweet tea, or sports drinks with lemon water, it may help you control your diabetes. Lemon water is made from the juice of the lemon mixed with water. It can be served hot or cold and can include extras like lemon zest, honey, mint, or cucumber.

Is Lemon Water Good for Diabetes?

Lime water without any added sugar is said to be one of the healthiest drinks for people with diabetes.

When it comes to diabetes, food frequently takes center stage, but beverages can also have an impact on your weight and blood sugar levels. The American Diabetes Association advises drinking beverages with no calories or with very few calories.

Everyone needs to stay hydrated, but people with diabetes need to be extra careful because having high blood sugar levels might make it harder to balance hydration.

Lemon juice is one of the greatest drinks to eat to reduce the effects of diabetes since it has two advantages: soluble fiber and vitamin C.

Does Lemon Water Lower Blood Sugar?

Lemon water might not instantly lower your blood glucose levels, but it can help you control blood sugar over time. It helps stop any sudden spikes in the body’s blood sugar.

It has been reported that lemon peels can limit blood sugar absorption. They can also control your metabolism, lower blood sugar, and lessen insulin resistance. In addition, a study shows that citrus fruits also help in lowering obesity-associated metabolic disorder.

The American Diabetes Association considers citrus fruits like lemon as a “diabetes superfood” that can be added to your daily food intake. It also gives you a daily dose of dietary fiber, vitamin C, folate, and potassium.

Lemon Nutritional Facts

Vitamin C, a good source of antioxidants, is abundant in lemons. One lemon that has been squeezed supplies about 21% of a person’s daily value.

Lemon water has very little protein, fat, carbohydrate, or sugar, as well as very little potassium, folate, and some B vitamins. It also has very little protein, fat, carbohydrate, and sugar.

Lemons contain a lot of flavonoids, much like other citrus fruits like oranges, grapes, and limes. These substances support health and fight sickness.

The nutritional breakdown for lemon water with one 48g squeezed lemon is shown in the database of the United States Department of Agriculture.

A 48g lemon contains 10.6 calories, 18.6mg of vitamin C, 9.6mcg of folate, 49.4mg of potassium, 0.01mg of vitamin B1, 0.01mg of vitamin B2, and 0.06mg of vitamin B5.

Lemon water is a nutritious, low-calorie, and low-sugar beverage that can increase a person’s intake of vitamin C, even though one glass does not appear to have many nutrients.

The amount of lemon juice and other elements in a glass of lemon water determines its nutritional value.

Does Lemon Water Contain Sugar Content?

Lemon water contains a small amount of sugar in it. The lemon juice produced by one lemon(48g) contains approximately 1.21g of sugar.

7 Health Benefits of Lemon Water for Diabetes

Lemon water, due to its high vitamin C, flavonoid content, and acidity, may provide several health benefits to people with diabetes. Let’s look at the health benefits of lemon water in more detail.

1. Fights against heart issues

Potassium can lower blood pressure and minimize the risk of heart attacks and strokes, which are common among diabetes patients.

One theory for its beneficial effects on cardiovascular health is that it reduces atherosclerosis, or artery narrowing, caused by calcium buildup.

Additionally, it counteracts the negative effects of a diet that is heavy in sodium.

2. Aids in digestion

You must maintain a healthy digestive system if you have diabetes. Poorly managed diabetes can have an impact on the body’s functions, particularly the digestive system.

Along with other factors, it could lead to gastroparesis and acid reflux, which causes the stomach to empty more slowly than usual and allows food to be digested slowly. 

Although there are drugs that can speed up stomach emptying, lemon water can be a more natural alternative.

3. Regulates glucose levels

The American Diabetes Association recommends that people with diabetes and those at risk for developing the disease consume at least 14 grams of fiber for every 1,000 calories.

A diet high in dietary fiber may offer significant advantages. Higher fiber intake was associated with somewhat lower fasting blood glucose levels, according to a 2018 analysis.

Lemons have 2.8g of fiber. To meet your daily fiber requirements, combine lemon water with other high-fiber foods.

Additionally, citrus fruits like lemons also have soluble fiber, which helps lower blood glucose levels. Soluble fiber typically helps rank lower on the glycemic index, resulting in less fluctuation in your blood sugar levels and a longer feeling of fullness.

4. Vitamin C helps to reduce blood sugar levels

A single lemon yields nearly 18.6mg of vitamin C. According to a 2016 study, dietary vitamin C intake may be protective against the onset of type 2 diabetes.

Another study comprised 84 participants with type 2 diabetes in total. They obtained vitamin C daily for six weeks at random doses of 500 or 1,000mg.

Significantly lower blood sugar levels (fasting) were seen in the group who took vitamin C supplementation (1,000mg). However, none of the characteristics under study significantly changed after receiving a dose of 500mg of vitamin C.

5. A healthier alternative for sugary beverages

If possible, stay away from sugary beverages. They have the potential to significantly exceed the daily recommended calorie intake, in addition to raising blood sugar levels.

Fruit juices, ordinary soda, and energy drinks with added sugar are a few examples of sugary beverages.

6. Slows the conversion of starch to sugar

Foods heavy in carbohydrates have a high glycemic index because they cause your blood sugar to rise quickly after digestion. 

When lemon juice is consumed with a food that has a high glycemic index, the rate at which starch is converted to sugar is slowed, decreasing the GI of the food.

7. May aid weight loss

Some evidence indicates that water may help with weight loss because of its possible advantages for metabolism, satiety, and hydration. Having lemon water could help in increasing your daily water intake.

In a study, researchers found that young individuals who consume pre-meal water significantly reduced their meal calorie intake, which implies that this may be a useful weight-control method, even though the exact mechanism of action is unknown.

8. Rich in flavonoids and antioxidants

Lemons are a source of plant components called flavonoids, which have antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties, as well as vitamin C, a potent antioxidant. Antioxidants are substances that aid in preventing cell deterioration in the body.

Antioxidants lower the risk of a wide range of illnesses, such as cancer, diabetes, obesity, and cancer, by lowering cell damage. The body’s inflammation is also decreased by citrus flavonoids.

Citrus fruit antioxidants and flavonoids have been shown to boost metabolic health parameters like glucose tolerance, insulin levels, and fat metabolism, according to a 2019 study.

Things to Remember Before Consuming Lemon Water

We’ve talked about the health benefits of lemon water, such as weight loss and blood sugar management. But have you ever considered the side effects of drinking lemon water?

Here are some things to keep in mind before drinking lemon water:

1. It might harm your teeth

Lemon contains a lot of acids. According to a study, drinking too much lemon water can remove minerals by causing the enamel, or the outer coating of the teeth, to dissolve.

Because lemons are so acidic, consuming them frequently can cause tooth enamel to erode, according to the American Dental Association.

It is recommended to try drinking lemon water through a straw to lessen the amount of acid that comes in contact with your teeth directly.

Additionally, you should drink lots of plain water and refrain from brushing your teeth shortly after ingesting lemon water.

2. Upsets your stomach

Acidic foods, such as lemons, can cause gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and acid reflux, which can result in discomfort, nausea, or even vomiting.

Although lemon water’s wide range of health advantages frequently focuses on gut health, adding too much lemon juice might exacerbate common conditions, as mentioned above.

3. Unpleasant bacteria are found on lemon skins

Microorganisms can be found on lemon skins. Instead of placing the entire wedge of lemon into your drink, squeeze some lemon juice into it to reduce your risk a little.

4. Can aggravate canker sores

Canker sores are mouth ulcers that typically appear on the inside of the cheeks or under the tongue. According to a study, they are brought on by eating foods that are acidic or spicy, lacking in vitamins, or by wearing braces.

Eating and conversing might be uncomfortable. Stop drinking lemon water if you develop canker sores after doing so.

5. Can cause migraines

The drawbacks of everyday lemon water consumption include headaches and migraines. Citrus fruits like lemon have been shown to cause headaches and migraines. Drinking lemon water every day can lead chronic migraine sufferers to experience frequent episodes.

A Word From Our RD

If lemon water is consumed instead of sugar-sweetened drinks like soda, sweet tea, or sports drinks, it may help those with diabetes.

In addition to providing potassium, folate, fiber, and vitamin C, it has almost no calories or sugar, and the lemon may give your body modest amounts of nutrients. When you consume lemon juice with a high glycemic index food, it may help in lowering the glycemic index of that food.

Most people won’t experience any ill effects from drinking lemon water, especially if they do it in moderation. But for other people, excessive drinking can worsen their acid reflux symptoms. Lemon is a very acidic fruit, so it can potentially harm tooth enamel over time.


When lemons are integrated into someone’s diabetes management plan, they can have many positive effects on the body. Lemons are rich in potassium and fiber, all of which are heart-healthy nutrients for diabetes.

Lemons’ vitamin C content may help control blood sugar levels. However, always remember not to substitute your doctor’s prescription medication for treatment with lemon or lemon water.

Written by Edibel Quintero, RD
Edibel Quintero is a medical doctor who graduated in 2013 from the University of Zulia and has been working in her profession since then. She specializes in obesity and nutrition, physical rehabilitation, sports massage and post-operative rehabilitation. Edibel’s goal is to help people live healthier lives by educating them about food, exercise, mental wellness and other lifestyle choices that can improve their quality of life.
The article was fact checked by Rosmy Barrios, MD
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Written by Edibel Quintero, RD
Fact checked by Rosmy Barrios, MD
Last update: March 17, 2023
7 min read 1191 Views 0 Comments

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