Hello and welcome to a new week. Today, we will be talking about a much loved fruit, Orange. Oranges are one of the most popular fruits around the world. They are round citrus fruits with finely-textured skins that are orange in color just like their pulpy flesh. They usually range from about two to three inches in diameter. Do you even know the health benefits of oranges? Read on.
Oranges are an excellent source of vitamin C. They are also a very good source of dietary fiber. In addition, oranges are a good source of B vitamins including vitamin B1, pantothenic acid, and folate as well as vitamin A, calcium, copper, and potassium.
What Are The Health Benefits of Oranges?
- Helps Prevent Cancer
Oranges contain a compound called D – limonene that has been shown to play an important role in preventing various types of cancer like lung cancer, breast cancer, skin cancer, etc. Additionally, the antioxidants and Vitamin C help promote the body’s immunity which helps in fighting cancer cells. Oranges are highly fibrous fruits, which contributes to its cancer-protecting effect.
2. Prevents Kidney Diseases
Drinking orange juice regularly prevents kidney diseases and reduces the risk of kidney stones.
However, drink juice in moderate amounts. The high sugar content of fruit juices can cause tooth decay and the high acid content can wear away enamel if consumed in excess.
- Lowers Cholesterol
Since they’re full of soluble fiber, oranges are helpful in lowering cholesterol.
- Boosts Heart Health
Oranges are full of potassium, an electrolyte mineral responsible for helping the heart function well.
- Boosts immunity
Oranges are an excellent source of vitamin C. A single medium-sized orange can fulfill about 72% of your daily requirement for vitamin C. Since vitamin C plays a crucial role as an antioxidant by protecting your body against the damage caused by free radicals generated in the body. It therefore reduces inflammation in immune related conditions like rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.
- Prevents constipation
Oranges are a very good source of soluble and insoluble fibre, which helps keep your stomach and intestines healthy by preventing problems like irritable bowel syndrome. The fibre content in them adds bulk to the digested food and reduces transit time of feces, preventing constipation and straining.
- Protects the eyes
Vitamin A in oranges helps keep mucus membranes in the eyes healthy. Available in the form of carotenoid compounds like lutein, beta carotene and zeaxanthin, vitamin A is protective against age-related macular degeneration, a vision-related condition that causes blindness. Besides, it also plays an important role in allowing your eyes to absorb the light.
- Regulates High Blood Pressure
The flavonoid hesperidin found in oranges helps regulate high blood pressure and the magnesium in oranges helps maintain blood pressure.
- Protects Skin
Oranges are full of beta-carotene, a powerful antioxidant protecting the cells from being damaged, therefore preventing aging.
- Helps brain development
Folate/folic acid or vitamin B9 present in oranges promote brain development and keep the vital organ in mint condition. In fact, these nutrients also make orange a healthy fruit for pregnant woman as it prevents the baby from having neurological disorders later. Oranges also contain phytonutrients called polyphenols that play a role in development of learning and memory functions of the brain.
You can see why oranges are loved. They are great for a healthy you, however, you should enjoy them in moderation, Laura Flores, a San Diego-based nutritionist warned, “Eating too many oranges has some uncomfortable side effects.” “When eaten in excess, the greater fiber content can effect digestion, causing abdominal cramps and could also lead to diarrhea.”
Are Orange peels edible?
Orange peels are not poisonous but while orange peels are edible, they are not nearly as sweet or juicy as the pulp. They can also be difficult to digest. If you do eat the peel, you’ll get a good amount of nutrients. “Orange peel actually has more fiber then the fruit inside contains,” Flores said. “It also has flavonoids in it that contain nutritious benefits.” Flavonoids are compounds found in many foods. They are known to have antihypertensive and anti-inflammatory effects, which relieve pressures on the heart.
Additionally, orange peels contain vitamins A, C, B6 and B5; calcium; riboflavin; thiamin; niacin; and folate. One way to get some of the nutrients is by eating the inner part of the peel and leaving the tough outer part. “The pith of the orange — the white part between the skin and fruit — can be sour or bitter but actually contains just as much vitamin C as the fruit itself, with a good deal of fiber,” Flores said.
So, enjoy your week with oranges.
- Ensminger AH, Esminger M. K. J. e. al. Food for Health: A Nutrition Encyclopedia. Clovis, California: Pegus Press; 1986. 1986. PMID:15210.