by Philemon kwizera, RN

The first substance you consume in the morning needs to be water.

This will hydrate your system immediately and wake you up on a cellular level. Throughout the day, continue to drink approximately 1/2 of your body weight of water (e.g., if you weigh 81 Kg, drink 2.6 liters of pure water daily). Adding freshly squeezed lemon to your water will create an alkalizing process that reduces inflammation.

What is Inflammation

Inflammation is a root cause of almost all chronic diseases, including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. Though lemon is an acidic fruit, it is alkalizing when eaten. As you sleep, swelling occurs. This is why you may wake up congested, groggy, with sleep in your eyes, and slow-moving. This clogging also occurs inside your body. After all, your organs, bloodstream, and cells have been lying still for hours. It’s a susceptible time for inflammation.

Make your morning more healthy

The healthiest first-thing-in-the-morning practice is flushing your system. Help your body move the toxins that have accumulated overnight. It’s a simple practice, to start your day with a glass of fresh water and hand-squeezed lemon. It’s a smart idea to make this your beverage of choice, before reaching for coffee, tea, or food. Remember, you are breaking a fast each morning. Since you aren’t eating while sleeping, your body, organs, blood, and cells finally get to rest.

Doesn’t it make sense to allow your insides to wake up slowly? Slow awakening and cleansing are what happens when you flush your system and then gradually introduce other ingredients—beverages and food. Hydrating with fresh lemon upon rising feels so good, too—clean, pure, and in the right alignment. This practice allows you to start your day with multiple health benefits—hydration, inflammation-reduction, toxin-cleansing and purification, vitamin C nourishment, and the list goes on.

My morning routine

In my morning hydration practice, I interchange fresh-squeezed lemon with a cupful of apple cider vinegar (ACV: great for balancing blood sugar) in my glass of room-temperature water. I drink diligently. Why? Because, along with the known health benefits, my body responds positively to the cool splash.

I cannot imagine eating before I plunge into my water source. Even Devotion comes after hydration. This is my first self-care practice of the day, every day. I emphasize the daily aspect of it because consistency is the key element in practicing. Success builds over time; success is cumulative. My body and intuition tell me that hydrating as my first practice of the day is a non-optional necessity. Whether I choose fresh lemon or ACV, I feel the cleansing effects almost immediately. Day after day, this practice supports my digestion and assists me in meeting the day with full presence.

What is your first practice of the day? How does it support you?

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