Health Benefits of Oranges!


So much more than a “Daily Dose of Vitamin C”!

Oranges are undoubtedly one of the most popular citrus fruits.  They are the leading fruit crop in the United States and are also largely produced in Mexico, China, Brazil, and India.  Who doesn’t love biting into a juicy slice of orange citrus! Not only does it make our taste buds dance with its sweet tangy flavor, but it also has an incredibly energizing effect on our bodies!

But there is more to the beloved orange than taste – peel back the thick fibrous husk and discover a wealth of health benefits!

Oranges are packed with many phytochemicals, flavonoids and of course Vitamin C, all of which play a major role in reducing inflammation and enhancing the immune system.

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Hesperidin, an important flavonoid found in oranges, has been shown to lower blood pressure and cholesterol, as well as improve the health of capillaries. Hesperidin has been used to reduce symptoms associated with allergies by inhibiting the release of histamine. It is also being studied for its potential anti-cancer activities. Hesperidin is most concentrated in the inner white pulp of the fruit, as opposed to its orange flesh.

In addition to supporting the immune system, Vitamin C is vital for the synthesis of collagen which helps to improve skin texture and prevent premature aging and wrinkling. It also promotes wound healing and is a constitutional component of tendons, ligaments, bone and blood vessels.

Oranges are also a great source of  ThiamineFolatePotassium, and Dietary Fiber. Thiamine is important for glucose (sugar) metabolism and proper functioning of the brain, heart, and nervous systems, while potassium helps to balance the effects of sodium on the body which is important for regulating blood pressure and reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke.  A study conducted by the American Heart Association found that

“postmenopausal women who eat foods higher in potassium are less likely to have strokes and die than women who eat less potassium-rich foods.”

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Trivia Question:  Which came first, orange the color or orange the fruit?  Surprisingly the fruit existed before the word for the color!  

According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the fruit was recorded in English in the fourteenth century.  The word as it applies to the color appeared at the beginning of the seventeenth century.  So what did people call the color before it had a name?  Simply, “yellow-red” of course! The color’s name is derived from the Sanskrit word for the fruit naranga, which transformed into the Arabic and Persian naranj, and eventually the Old French pomme d’orenge. 

Susan Hartman

Susan is a lawyer, Pilates instructor and passionate advocate of natural wellness. In 2006 she began exploring various nutritional and movement therapies, meditation and other alternative means of healing in an attempt to naturally relieve hormonal imbalances, eczema and back and joint pain. After much research and trial and error, she found a personal regimen that not only alleviated her symptoms, but that also left her with a new found sense of overall health and wellness. During this period of exploration, she was introduced to Pilates and was surprised by how quickly she began to feel and see positive results in her body. She loves how Pilates emphasizes body awareness and the connection of breath to movement, and she believes it can bring about lifelong health benefits including stress relief and improved strength, flexibility, balance and coordination.

Today Susan strives to promote the importance of regular exercise, a clean whole foods diet, compassion for self and others, and a curious attitude, all as a means to maintaining vitality and living a balanced and centered life. When she is not practicing law or teaching Pilates, she can be found hiking or biking in the woods, soaking up the sun atop her paddleboard, engaged in a yoga or group fitness class, or immersed in a book or classic movie.