The Benefits of Citrus Fruits
Citrus fruits are all the rage in fall and winter. There’s so much more to these succulent gems than meets the eye! The FizzUp trainer will tell you all about the benefits of citrus fruits for your body and how to make the most of them!
ALL ABOUT CITRUS FRUITS
Citrus fruits include oranges, grapefruits, mandarin oranges, clementines and lemons. They originally came from Asia and were gradually exported around the world.
Their trees need a tropical or subtropical climate for optimal growth. Citrus fruits are mainly grown in China, South America, the United States and around the Mediterranean Sea in Europe.
THE BENEFITS OF CITRUS FRUITS
Citrus fruits have a thick peel covering flesh that’s easily divided into quarters. The flesh is extremely juicy because it’s mainly made up of water, making them low in calories. There are about 90 calories per orange and 25 calories per mandarin orange. Like most fruits, they’re also high in fiber, which slows down your digestion and makes you feel full faster.
Get your energy fill in the morning with an orange or two clementines for breakfast. Citrus fruits are high in vitamin C, ranging from 20 to 30 mg for clementines, mandarin oranges or grapefruits and 50 to 60 mg for lemons or oranges (for 100 g of fruit).
The primary role of vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is to help your body make collagen, a protein that’s an essential component of your skin, bones and tissue. It’s also a powerful antioxidant that reduces oxidative stress in your cells and inflammation. If you eat one citrus fruit a day, you’ll get your daily recommended 60 mg dose of vitamin C. Ever wondered why you should drink a glass of hot lemon water when you wake up in the morning? That’s the easiest way to get your fill of vitamins and gently wake up your digestive system.
FizzUp trainer’s tip: Have some freshly squeezed orange juice rather than store-bought. It contains twice the amount of vitamin C and fiber and is low in refined sugar. For maximum health benefits, drink it right after it’s squeezed because vitamin C oxidizes when it’s exposed to sunlight and heat.
And don’t forget about the peel! It’s also great for your health. The peel contains flavonoids that act as an antioxidant to reduce your risk of cancer. But if you’re going to eat citrus fruit peel, make sure you’re buying organic. Citrus fruit farming can heavily rely on pesticides to avoid product waste because of insects and fungi that also love to chew on these delicious fruits!
BAKED CLEMENTINES, FIZZUP STYLE
Ingredients (makes 1 serving):
- 2 organic clementines
- ⅓ vanilla bean
- ½ cinnamon stick
- 2 star anise
- ½ teaspoon powdered sugar (US) / icing sugar (UK)
- Caramel sauce (better thinner than thicker)
Preheat the oven to 355°F (180°C). Blanch the clementines by boiling them in a saucepan for 1 minute. Strain and set them on a plate. With the tip of a knife, cut three slits in the top of each clementine. Insert a piece of the cinnamon stick, vanilla bean and star anise into each slit. Place the clementines in a baking dish and bake them for 15 minutes. Let cool, then remove the pieces and sprinkle them with powdered sugar and a drizzle of caramel sauce for a touch of sweetness.
FizzUp trainer’s tip: If you’re using organic clementines, you can eat the peel if it’s not too hard.
Behold all the health benefits citrus fruits have for your body! Start your mornings with an extra boost of vitamin C to get your day rolling.