Over the past few weeks, I’ve been feeling bloated and my skin’s been breaking out a lot. I exercise and I eat well but I guess my hormones have other ideas. I’ve heard of the benefits of drinking lemon water, so I decided to give it a shot. It’s meant to clear your skin, help you lose weight, and give you more energy, if you use this in conjunction with intermittent fasting. Intermittent fasting can vary from taking entire days where you don’t eat many calories, or where you have a time slot allotted for each day where you have eight hours to eat in moderation then don’t eat outside those hours. It’s endorsed by many fitness gurus and celebrities, so I thought I would give that a try too. I decided to stick with the allotted eight hours each day, not going too hardcore like following the 5:2 diet.
I started off weighing in at 65 kg, buying a pack of lemons, and had my shaker bottle at the ready for lemon water.
I’m okay with bitter flavours so used half a lemon for 700 ml of water, preparing it the night before for me to drink in the morning. Not to show my age, but I was worried about the lemon juice thinning my teeth, hearing that acid can cause the enamel to become weaker. Still, what harm could it do for two weeks?
At the beginning of each day, I found the lack of breakfast easy. I didn’t feel hungry because my stomach was filled with lemon water. Drinking something so sour at the start of the morning was a bit of a shock to my mouth but I got used to it after the first couple of days. I decided I would fast until lunch time, around 12pm, then my cut off mark would be 8pm. Sounds easy, right? Again, at the start of the day, it was fine, but as it hit 10am, I found myself becoming cranky, tired, and less energised. I work an office job, I’m not incredibly physically active on the job so I don’t use many calories during my work hours. This didn’t stop me from feeling low on energy, despite drinking black coffee throughout the morning.
The crankiness didn’t shift. This was throughout the two weeks.
After eating a lunch of oatcakes or falafels, I felt sluggish and still tired, and I felt generally low on energy. Trying to exercise after work became almost impossible, even with a protein shake before it. I felt uncoordinated and all I wanted was my bed. When I got home to make dinner, I would end up eating more because I’d be ravenous suddenly. My stomach also started to hurt, getting indigestion frequently from the acidity of the lemons (again, showing my age).
After all this, after two weeks of only eating between 12pm and 8pm and consuming nothing but lemon water and coffee in between, was there any difference?
Well, my skin cleared, which was a nice surprise. I’m not sure if it’s because of the lemons or it’s because I had more time in the morning because I didn’t need to make breakfast, so I had more time to create a skincare routine. I also spent an extra 15 minutes in bed which was nice. Unfortunately, I didn’t lose any weight, still sitting at 65 kg.
I think I overcompensated almost every night for not eating in the morning because I was so hungry by the time I got home, even if I didn’t go to the gym after my shift. During the weekend, even if I stuck with the fasting and water, I snacked more because I was home and my self-control kind of sucks. This diet didn’t work for me unfortunately, I don’t know how it works for everyone else or if fitness gurus have been exaggerating their results. I just know I’m glad to not be so cranky all the time.