Citrus spotlight

agrumi

Citrus is seasonal, grown in warm to hot climates and is gathered between Dec and May.  Harvest varies by variety, but the general consensus is that it tastes it’s sweetest during the seasonal picking window.

Nutritionally lemons, limes and oranges are an excellent source of vitamin C.  Flavanones, a type of antioxidant, are also found in citrus fruits (especially high concentrations are found in the pith and skin!).  They are highly bioavailable and show up in blood ready to fight free radicals as soon as 20 minutes after eating!  Over time, those pesky free radicals can cause inflammation, a factor linked to many chronic diseases.  Citrus has also been linked to improved moods and even weight loss !

One cup of orange segments has just 85 calories, with 4g fiber, 21g carbohydrate and 96g vitamin C!  Fresh is best with this nutrient, as heating these foods will destroy it!  Microwaving, steaming or stir frying are cooking methods that limits losses – unlike boiling which leaches vitamins.

Oranges not your cuppa tea?  Check out these suggestions for including foods high in vitamin C.:

Top salads and sandwiches with sliced tomatoes

Make your own fresh squeezed grapefruit juice!

Throw a container of kiwi, pineapple chunks and berries into a lunch box to bring to school or work

Slice up some bell peppers for a quick snack with hummus!

New Research:  One small study  published in Journal of American Medical Association is looking into how vitamin C therapy may help hospitalized patients with body wide inflammation called sepsis.  Patients who received the therapy spent less time in the ICU and seven fewer days in the hospital.  Though organ failure scores did not improve, they were more likely to survive than those who didn’t get the vitamin C – which is a VERY big deal!

Your Dole Team

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