When Life Gives You Lemons - Our Daily Green

Thursday, June 16, 2011

When Life Gives You Lemons

Life has recently given me a case of lemons. Actual lemons, lovely tart football shaped fruit. Bursting with juice and flavor. An entire case of them. Any regular reader will know that Our Daily Green hates to waste food. We've blogged about ways to find new recipes for leftovers and how to use every piece of food that comes into the house. This unexpected case of lemons is no exception.

Since our children are past the age of lemonade stands, Our Daily Green hit the search engines for ideas. We already know that lemons are a SuperFood sidekick, as an excellent source of Vitamin C, nearly half the daily allowance. Lemons also contain limonoid antioxidants which have been shown to have healing properties that combat many carcinogenic toxins that could cause cancer.

Our Daily Green spent the past few days making Moroccan preserved lemons and lemon marmalade, as well as homemade lemonade. We plan to make a lemon meringue pie later today or tomorrow. We also use lemon in savory dishes and salad dressings. There is no shortage to the ways lemons can be used in the kitchen, but even then, a case is an awful lot of lemons.

Beyond the dietary benefits, lemons also have beauty applications as well as housekeeping uses. Lemon juice restores the skin's natural acid mantle that gets stripped by soap and hard water, working much the same way as apple cider vinegar, which we have written about in the past. A cut lemon rubbed on rough elbows and knees works as an exfoliator, while lemon juice is a good natural astringent that cleans the pores without disrupting the skin's natural pH. Lemon juice also will bring out natural highlights in lighter hair as well as soften dry, flyaway hair by smoothing the hair shaft and also helping with dandruff. Lemons also will lighten darkened fingernails.

Lemons don't just take care of the internal and external body; they also can be used to clean around the house. One of the easiest and most effective ways to clean copper is by dipping a cut lemon in salt and scrubbing copper with the lemon, stripping the tarnish and grime and restoring a sparkling shine.

Lemons also remove stains from wooden cutting boards and plastic bowls. A quarter cup of lemon juice added to a load of laundry is a nontoxic alternative to bleach.

And if you still don't know what to do with all those lemons, take a look at the charity, Alex's Lemonade Stand. Founded by Alex Scott, a little girl with cancer, she decided to raise money for other children also battling cancer. In August of 2004, Alex passed away at the age of 8, knowing that, with the help of others, she had raised over $1 million to help find a cure for the disease that took her life. Alex's family - including brothers Patrick, Eddie, and Joey - and supporters around the world are committed to continuing her inspiring legacy through Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation.

The next time life gives you lemons, celebrate! There are so many uses for this natural fruit that you'll find no shortage of ideas.
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