“It is completely absurd that in this region, vitamin C supplements and the benefits of oranges need a recommendation by physicians,” declared Professor Stepp in his seminal lecture at the School of Medicine at Valencia (Spain).
During the 1940s, the pharmaceutical industry was filled with pride in its ability to synthesize most vitamins. Professor Stepp, a distinguished German scientist who was world-known for his studies on vitamins, was attending a scientific conference in the Mediterranean city of Valencia.
Some local colleagues took him to visit the beautiful orange groves in the Valencia countryside, where he had the privilege of eating some of the world’s best tree-ripened fruit. It was then that this German man of science and the advocate of synthetic vitamins forgot his science and exclaimed:
“How much more healthful it is to enjoy a good Valencian orange than to take the best vitamin C supplement that our industry has to offer!”
Professor Stepp was correct: A natural orange is superior to any pharmaceutical preparation as a vitamin C source. Currently, we now know that in addition to vitamin C, this fruit contains about 170 phytochemicals that potentiate and compliment the benefits of oranges in the body.
All of these, together with the sense of well-being, even pleasure, that one gain from eating an orange – pleasure is also a health factor, causing its health effects to be much more significant than would be expected from its 50 mg/100 g of vitamin C. Despite what promoters of pharmaceutical chemistry may claim, the 50 mg/100 g of vitamin C in oranges provides much more to the body than 50 mg or 500 of any pill or medication.
Benefits of Oranges: Preparations and Dosage
- Orange benefits (Fresh): When eating this fruit, the white inner orange peel should be included, and the pulp fibers as long as it is not tough.
- Benefits of orange juice: Ideally, the juice should be drunk fresh-squeezed since vitamin C loses its potency over time and exposure to light. Canned orange juice loses some of its natural vitamin C, although some bottlers enrich it with synthetic vitamin C.
- Orange treatment: This treatment should be followed for one or two days per week for three or four weeks. It consists of eating only oranges each day and drinking only fresh juice. Ten to twelve oranges may be eaten, and 2 to 4 glasses of juice may be drunk each day. If the oranges are very bitter, two teaspoons of honey may be added to each glass.
- Related species: Citrus aurantium L. (bitter orange)
- French: Orange;
- Spanish: Naranja;
- German: Orange;
- Description: Aggregate fruit of the orange tree (‘Citrus Sinensis’ Osbeck), an evergreen tree of the botanical family Rutaceae. The orange, like all citrus, like all citrus, is composed of various fruits joined to form a simple fruit.
- Habitat: Originally from China, oranges are cultivated in all the hot areas of the world in the so-called “citrus belt,” between 40 degrees north latitude and 35 degrees south latitude.
Benefits of Oranges: Medicinal Properties and Indications
Sugars, in moderate amounts, are easily assimilated by the body and tolerated by people with diabetes. The sugars are saccharose, dextrose, and levulose.
Minerals, among which potassium and calcium stand out. Oranges also comprise smaller but substantial amounts of iron and magnesium.
Vitamins, in addition to vitamin C, oranges, contain carotenoids responsible for their typical color, vitamin B1 and vitamin B2.
Folic acid, this essential nutrient is vital for the proper development of the fetal nervous system. It also acts as an antioxidant whose blood presence is necessary to the defensive cells’ proper function, such as leukocytes or white blood cells.
Vegetable fiber, in the form of pectin, which fights cholesterol. Fiber is the only component of the orange that is not present in orange juice; however, it plays a major role when it comes to the many benefits of oranges.
Organic acids, mainly citric acid, potentiate vitamin C activity and enable the purging of toxic deposits such as uric acid from the body.
Carotenoids are substances similar to beta-carotene, which also transform into vitamin A in the body. They act as powerful antioxidants. Of the twenty carotenoids found in the orange, the most prominent are beta-cryptoxanthin, lutein, and zeaxanthin.
Phytochemicals are substances found in minimal amounts in foods but play significant roles within the body. There are about one hundred and seventy different phytochemicals in the orange, and it is still possible to discover more. From a chemical viewpoint, there are two main groups of phytochemicals responsible for the benefits of oranges, such as:
- Flavonoids: These are potent antioxidants, anti-inflammatory, and anticarcinogenic glucosides. They also have a positive effect on the circulatory system. The best known are rutin, tangeretin, nobiletin, naringin, hesperidin, and quercetin.
- Limonoids: These substances are responsible for the orange’s aroma, which forms part of its essence. Chemically these are terpenes, the most abundant of which is d-limonene. This substance found in oranges prevents tumor formation in experimental animals after being introduced to known carcinogens.
An essential property of the phytochemicals, which are so abundant in oranges and citrus fruits in general, is that they potentiate the effect of specific vitamins such as vitamin C. Today, science is beginning to understand a fact that a select few knew for decades: vitamins are much more effective if taken from natural sources that include the whole food, this ensures you get the complete and comprehensive benefits of oranges.
Thanks to its extraordinary chemical composition, the orange increases disease resistance, protects the arteries, is antiallergenic, alkalizing, remineralizing, and anticarcinogenic. Thanks to its dietetic and therapeutic properties, here are some of the many orange health benefits:
Infectious diseases, thrombosis, arteriosclerosis, cardiovascular disease, constipation, allergies, asthma, gout, macular degeneration, cancer prevention, kidney stones, osteoporosis, high cholesterol, arthritis, and high blood pressure.
Orange Nutrition Facts and Composition
|ENERGY||47.0 kcal = 197 kj|
|VITAMIN A||21.0 ug RE|
|VITAMIN B1||0.087 mg|
|VITAMIN B2||0.040 mg|
|NIACIN||0.432 mg NE|
|VITAMIN B6||0.060 mg|
|VITAMIN C||53.2 mg|
|VITAMIN E||0.240 mg a-TE|
|TOTAL FAT||0.120 g|
|SATURATED FAT||0.015 g|
Benefits of Orange Juice
Orange juice is an extremely popular drink mostly enjoyed by people worldwide at breakfast. Drinking this juice is almost the same as eating the fruit without calcium and fiber. You can find the calcium and fiber mainly in the pulp.
Juices made from reconstituted juice are an excellent alternative to natural juice. The vitamin C lost in processing is calculated at about 10%. The remaining vitamins, folic acid, and minerals are maintained exceptionally well in bottled juice. In any case, bottled or frozen juice is better than nothing in the absence of fresh juice.
Four oranges daily are recommended for those wanting to strengthen their immune system, and take full advantage of the many benefits of oranges.
Comparison Between the Composition of 100 g of Orange and its Juice
|Vitamin A (ug RE)||21||20|
|Vitamin B1 (mg)||0.087||0.09|
|Vitamin C (mg)||53.2||50|
George D. Pamplona-Roger, M.D. “Encyclopedia of Foods and Their Healing Power.” George D. Pamplona-Roger, M.D. Encyclopedia of Foods and Their Healing Power. Trans. Annette Melgosa. Vol. 2. Chai Wan: Editorial Safeliz, 2005. 360,361,362,363,364,365. Print. [benefits of oranges]