Health Benefits of Oranges
It was once said that Hercules, half-man, half-god, stole the “Golden Apples”, which rightfully belonged to Zeus. What legend actually refers to aren’t apples at all, but oranges. These popular fruits are sweet, juicy and delicious. They’re also very good for your health. Read on to learn more about the incredible health benefits of oranges and why you should pick up a bag of them on your next grocery run.
Cold and Flu Prevention
It’s that time of year again; cold and flu season. Soon, everyone around you will be coughing, sneezing and missing work. If you want to avoid all that and stay healthy, load up on oranges. They’re packed full of vitamin C, which supports the immune system and fights off bacterial infection and viruses.
Vitamin C is also an effective antihistamine, which can ease respiratory inflammation associated with cold and allergies.
Good for Digestion
If you have gastrointestinal complaints such as ulcers, food allergies or constipation, add oranges to your diet. In addition to preventing colds and flu, the vitamin C in oranges can help prevent the development of ulcers. This juicy fruit is also packed full of fiber, which is essential to proper waste elimination.
Strengthens Bones and Teeth
Bone-strengthening is another one of the many health benefits of oranges. They’re rich in calcium, a mineral essential to bone strength. Calcium also helps strengthen teeth and prevent gum infections.
Bet you never thought you’d read that oranges can be used to slow the effects of aging, but it’s true. In addition to essential minerals, oranges are also loaded with antioxidants. Antioxidants seek out and destroy free radicals in the system, which can lead to premature aging.
The health benefits of oranges continue with their ability to reduce cholesterol. The secret is the alkaloid, synephrine, which reduces the production of cholesterol in the liver. If you’re currently on prescription medication to lower cholesterol, talk to your doctor. Adding oranges, as well as garlic, another natural cholesterol-reducer, can help you lower your cholesterol naturally without side effects.
If you struggle with asthma, emphysema or COPD, oranges are a fruit you need in your diet. The strong vitamin-C content will lower your risk of infection and fight inflammation. The iron and B6 will increase your amount of red blood cells, which are responsible for carrying oxygen from your lungs to your cells.
Improves Male Fertility
According to studies, oranges may also help prevent sperm damage caused by oxidative stress. This can improve male fertility and help prevent birth defects.
Prevents Kidney Stones
Next to childbirth, kidney stones are the most painful health condition you can endure. If you’re prone to them, adding orange juice to your diet can dramatically reduce your chances of recurrence. Oranges contain citrate, which naturally decreases the acidity in urine. This helps prevent the formation of kidney stones.
Stabilizes Emotional Health
If you’re like most people, you’re under a lot of stress. Millions of people suffer from depression, anxiety and other mental health problems that can make everyday life difficult. Millions more turn to prescription medication that can cause unwanted side effects.
According to neurologist, EH Reynolds, folic acid affects mood, cognitive and social functions. Deficiency in folic acid, especially among the elderly, can contribute to depression and dementia. Luckily, a high folic acid content is just one of the many health benefits of oranges.
Reduces Blood Pressure
High blood pressure can be caused by heredity, diet, stress or a combination of all three. The good news is you can lower your high blood pressure naturally with oranges. Oranges contains magnesium, a necessary mineral and the flavonoid hesperidin, which work together to reduce blood pressure.
Oranges vs. Orange Juice – Which is Healthier?
Whenever you’re questioning whether it’s the juice or the fruit that’s better for you, always opt for the whole fruit. Not matter how healthy it says it is for you on the bottle, unless it’s squeezed in front of you, it’s gone through some kind of pasteurization process. This means many of the nutrients have been stripped from the juice before it ever hits your table.
To give you an idea, here’s a breakdown:
Vitamin C: 51 Milligrams
Fiber: 3 Grams
Calcium: 40 Milligrams
Beta-Carotene: 70 Milligrams
Fresh Orange Juice
Vitamin C: 50 Milligrams
Fiber: 0.3 Grams
Calcium: 11 Milligrams
Beta Carotene: 33 Milligrams
Frozen Orange Juice (From Concentrate)
Vitamin C: 39 Milligrams
Fiber: 0.3 Grams
Calcium: 9 Milligrams
Beta Carotene: 17 Milligrams
As you can see, there are many health benefits of oranges. Add them to your diet for a powerful health punch the covers almost all the bases!