Orange or Santra is a citrus fruit belongs to the Rutaceae family. Oranges are mostly found in two forms, sweet oranges and bitter oranges. The orange is a hybrid fruit between pomelo and mandarin. Most likely, it was originated in the Southeast Asia and then cultivated in the China. Generally it is grown in the tropical and subtropical atmospheres. Since 1987, it has become one of the most cultivated tree fruits all over the world. Sweet oranges are cultivated around 70% of the total citrus fruit production. Sweet oranges are found in four different types (depends on their characteristics) navel oranges, common oranges, acidless oranges and blood or pigmented oranges.
Benefits of Orange/Santra
Oranges are the great sources of the instant energy including various health benefits. I have mentioned below the various health benefits of the oranges:
Prevents from Cancer
- Santra contain citrus limonoids which have ability to fight with the variety of cancer such as the breast cancer, colon cancer, skin cancer, lung cancer, uterine cancer, ovarian cancer, prostate cancer, oral cavity cancer, liver cancer, stomach cancer and etc.
Lowers Bad Cholesterol
- Oranges have high amount of the soluble fibres which helps in lowering the bad cholesterol level in the blood thus prevents from various heart diseases.
Good Source of Potassium
- Oranges are the rich source of the potassium electrolyte which maintains the better heart functioning.
Good Source of Vitamin C
- Oranges are very good source of the vitamin C which neutralizes the free radicals and protects the cells from early damage.
Prevents from Viral Infections
- Oranges are the abundant source of polyphenols which have ability to protect from the viral infections.
- The dietary fibres found in the oranges relieve the constipation by stimulating the digestive juices.
Prevents from Age Related Macular Degeneration
- Oranges have high level of the carotenoid compounds which gets transformed to the vitamin A and thus prevents for the age related macular degeneration.
Regulates High Blood Pressure
- Oranges have flavonoid hesperidin and magnesium which helps in regulating the high blood pressure.
Balances Body Digestive System
- Instead of being acidic in nature, oranges also have some alkaline minerals which help in balancing the body digestive system.
Fruit of Low Glycemic Index
- Oranges have simple sugars but considered as the low glycemic index food.
Boosts Immune System
- Oranges have various phytochemicals and flavonoids (Hesperetin, naringin, naringenin, alpha carotenes, beta-carotenes, zea-xanthin, beta-cryptoxanthin and lutein). Oranges are very good antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, free radical scavenger and immune system booster.
Improves Eye Vision
- Oranges have very good levels of the vitamin A which helps in maintaining the mucus membranes and skin healthy as well as improve the vision.
- B-complex vitamins (thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, pyridoxine, folates) are also found in the oranges which help the body fighting from the variety of infections.
Good Source of Minerals
- Oranges are the good source of the minerals like potassium and calcium which are required by the body to maintain the cell component and body fluids, control blood pressure and heart rate by opposing the sodium actions.
Reduces Risk of Chronic Diseases
- Its high antioxidant property cut the risk for various cancers, many chronic diseases such as obesity, arthritis, gout, coronary heart diseases and etc.
Improves Haemoglobin Level
- Iron and Vitamin B6 content of the orange increases the haemoglobin level thus enhances the oxygen carrying capacity of the body.
Benefits of Orange Juice
Prevents from Kidney Disorders
- Having moderate amount of the orange juice regularly helps in preventing various kidney diseases as well as reducing the risk of kidney stones formation.
Improves Body Stamina
- Santra juice filters out the blood and enhances the body ability to be prevented from the infections.
- Orange juice aids a lot in removing the fever and fall down the body temperature.
Clears Respiratory Tract
- It drives out the phlegm and cleans up the pharynx and larynx.
Keeps Colon and Bladder Healthy
- Orange juice is a very diuretic and detergent for the colon and bladder.
Keeps Stomach and Intestine Healthy
- Orange juice acts a very good laxative which makes the stomach and intestine healthy and clean by removing the wastes and expelling gas.
Induces Wound Healing
- Drinking orange juice regularly boosts up the wound healing process and relieves from the skin diseases.
Keeps Oral Cavity Healthy
- It keeps the teeth healthy by relieving the gums problem and other mouth problems.
- Orange juice is a good appetizer and helps a lot to the person suffering from the anaemia.
- It relaxes the brain by strengthening the nerves.
Good for Bones, Hair and Teeth
- It is good for making bones, nails, hair and teeth healthy.
Keeps Skin Healthy
- Santra prevents the skin from various skin diseases and scabies.
Benefits of Orange Juice for Skin
Prevents from Free Radicals and Early Ageing
- Beta-carotene (an influential antioxidant), found in the oranges helps in protecting the skin cells damage from the free radicals thus prevents from the ageing signs.
Benefits of Orange for Weight Management
Low in Calories and contains no Fats and Cholesterol
- Oranges are very low in calories, have no saturated fats and cholesterol, rich in dietary fibres (pectin) thus helps in maintaining the body weight. Pectin works as a good laxative which protects the colon mucous membrane from the cancer causing chemicals. Pectin is also very effective in reducing the bad cholesterol levels in blood by reducing the cholesterol re-absorption in colon.
Benefits of Orange during Pregnancy
Prevents Babies from Birth Defects
- Regular intake of the oranges (because of iron) by the pregnant women helps her baby to get free from the neural tube defects, low birth weight and other congenital problems related to the brain and spinal cord.
Benefits of Orange/Santra Peel
Contains Volatile Oil Glands
- Peels of the orange have various volatile oil glands in their pits.
Relieves many Disorders
- Santra peel helps in relieving the constipation, gas problems, asthma, heartburn, nausea, vomiting and regulates blood pressure as well as helps the liver to function well.
Treats Mental Problems
- Orange peels are widely used as an aroma therapy to treat the severe headache, anxiety or depression.
Removes Bad Breathe
- Chewing an orange peel makes the gum and teeth healthy and acts as a good mouth freshener which removes the bad breath.
Helps in Weight Loss
- Orange peels are rich in fibres thus helps in weight loss.
- Boil the orange peel with a little salt into the water for 20 mins then drink the solution after making it cool to reduce the hangover.
Keeps Skin Healthy
- Add some powdered orange peel or its oil to the bath to make the skin healthy.
Provides Glow to Skin
- Orange peel makes the face skin glow and bright as it removes dead cells, blackheads, acne, dark circles, blemishes and dry skin. It also helps in removing tan if applied with milk or curd. Rubbing it on the nails makes the nails shining more.
Good Mosquito Repellent
- Orange peel acts as a mosquito repellent and prevents from the mosquito bites.
Benefits of Orange Peel for Hair
Prevents from Dandruff
- Soak the finely grinded orange peel into the water for whole night then apply on the hair in morning to get free from the dandruff.
Benefits of Orange Leaves
Used to Prepare Herbal Tea
- Oil extract from the orange leaves is used for the aromatherapy and dried orange leaves are used in making variety of herbal tea.
Nutritional Benefits of Orange/Santra per 100 g
(Source: USDA Nutrient Database)
Energy: 47 Kcal
Carbohydrates: 11.75 g
Protein: 0.94 g
Fat: 0.12 g
Dietary Fibre: 2.40 g
Sugars: 9.35 g
Water: 86.75 g
Thiamine: 0.100 mg
Riboflavin: 0.040 mg
Niacin: 0.282 mg
Pantothenic acid: 0.250 mg
Pyridoxine: 0.060 mg
Folates: 30 µg
Vitamin C: 53.2 mg
Vitamin A: 225 IU
Vitamin E: 0.18 mg
Choline: 8.4 mg
Potassium: 169 mg
Sodium: No sodium
Calcium: 40 mg
Magnesium: 10 mg
Phosphorus: 14 mg
Iron: 0.10 mg
Manganese: 0.024 mg
Copper: 39 µg
Zinc: 0.08 mg
Carotene-α: 11 µg
Carotene-β: 71 µg
Crypto-xanthin-β: 116 µg
Lutein-zeaxanthin: 129 µg
Selection and Storage of Oranges
The season of the orange fruit starts in the month of October and lasts in the month of February. Navel oranges are sweeter than the others. Always buy oranges which are firm, soft (avoid very soft), heavy, fresh and bright color without any wrinkles and spot on their skin. Try to buy only organic oranges as they are free from the insecticides.
They can be easily stored at the room temperature for at least one week but in refrigerator it can be kept for two weeks. Store oranges in a cool dry place and away from the moisture to prevent it from getting mold easily. Extra orange juice can be placed in the freezer for later use.
How to Enjoy Oranges
Oranges can be enjoyed eating raw or drinking its juice. Fresh orange juice can be easily prepared at home which is much better than the commercial drinks as they have some preservatives and artificial colors. Oranges can also be added to the fruit salads, fruit chaat, dessert preparations, jams, jellies and etc. Dried orange flowers and leaves are being used in the herbal tea.
Real Facts about Oranges
- Largest amount of the oranges are produced by the Brazil.
- Oranges are the world’s leading citrus crop.
- Oranges which are shaped as the belly button named as the Navel Oranges.
- It is offered as the Christmas gift in the England at the occasion of Queen Victoria’s day.
- Navel oranges and Valencia oranges are two most common types of oranges.
- It is counted as the third favourite flavour all over the world after the chocolate and vanilla.
- Approximately 25 billion of the oranges are grown only by the America every year.
- 70% oranges of the total U.S. crop are produced by the Florida.
- The color, Orange, is named after the orange fruit.
- Moro oranges are named as the blood oranges as their pulp have bright red color.
Precautions while Eating Oranges
- Some insecticides have been used over the inorganic orange crops to prevent from the harmful insects. Thus it is very necessary to wash the oranges under cold running water for some time before eating. Organic oranges are free from these chemicals so they are best suited for health.
- Avoid drinking milk one hour before and one hour after when you eat oranges as the milk protein reacts with the vitamin C and tartaric acid found in the orange which may cause abdominal distension, pain, diarrhoea and etc.
- Never eat oranges together with the radish as radish produces thiocyanic acid (an anti-thyroid substance) which induces goitre by interacting with flavonoids found in orange.
- Avoid eating too many oranges a day as increase in vitamin C level increases the oxalic acid metabolism which leads to the stones formation in the kidney or urinary tract.
- Avoid eating oranges before the meal or empty stomach as organic acids found in the orange motivates the stomach wall mucous membranes and cause problem.
- Old people including other people suffering from kidney, gastrointestinal and lung diseases should avoid eating oranges as it may lead to the stomach ache, backache, waist discomfort and etc.
- People vulnerable to the food borne illness should avoid drinking unpasteurized juice.
Disadvantages of Orange
- Oranges do not have any dietary fat thus may harm the body as body requires some dietary fat in order to absorb the fat soluble vitamins, endurance exercises and blood clotting mechanism and brain development.
- Oranges are also very low in protein thus may harm the body as body needs high protein diet for building muscles and proper functioning of other body organs.
- Oranges have low level of amino acids (required by the body to build and repair the cells as well as to activate the enzymes and hormones).
- Over consumption of the oranges may lead to the formation kidney stones and diarrhea.
- Oranges are high in sugar which promotes the tooth decay and high acid content can destroy the enamel.
How Many Oranges to Eat In a Day
Having an orange is ok with every meal. But eating two or three raw oranges a day is normal. As oranges are loved by everyone, it is very necessary to eat oranges in limit.
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