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Who doesn’t love a delicious and juicy orange as a snack? Just about anybody would enjoy eating one or two oranges a day most of the year, since they’re easy to eat and provide quick energy. They also provide the following health benefits:
• Oranges contain phytochemicals that protect against cancer. They are rich in citrus limonoids, proven to help fight a number of varieties of cancers including that of the skin, lung, breast, stomach and colon.
• Orange juice can help prevent kidney diseases. Drinking orange juice regularly prevents kidney diseases and reduces the risk of kidney stones.
Note: drink juice in moderate amounts. The high sugar content of fruit juices can cause tooth decay and the high acid content can wear away enamel if consumed in excess.
• Mandarin oranges fight liver cancer, according to studies. In two studies done in Japan, researchers found that eating mandarin oranges reduces liver cancer. This may be due in part to vitamin A compounds known as carotenoids.
• Oranges lower cholesterol. Since they’re full of soluble fiber, oranges are helpful in lowering cholesterol.
• They are rich in potassium and boost heart health. Oranges are full of potassium, an electrolyte mineral responsible for helping the heart function well. When potassium levels get too low, you may develop an abnormal heart rhythm, known as an arrhythmia.
• They lower the risk of diseases. Oranges are full of vitamin C, which protects cells by neutralizing free radicals. Free radicals cause chronic diseases, like cancer and heart disease.
• Oranges fight against viral infections. Studies show that the abundance of polyphenols in oranges protects against viral infections.
• They relieve constipation. Oranges are full of dietary fiber, which stimulates digestive juices and relieves constipation.
• They aid in good eye health and protect vision. Oranges are rich in carotenoid compounds, which are converted to vitamin A and help prevent macular degeneration.
• They regulate high blood pressure. The flavonoid hesperidin found in oranges helps regulate high blood pressure, and the magnesium in oranges helps maintain blood pressure.
• They protect skin. Oranges are full of beta-carotene, which is a powerful antioxidant that protects the cells from damage. Beta-carotene protects the skin from free radicals and helps prevent the signs of aging.
• Oranges alkalize the body. Although oranges are acidic before you digest them, they contain many alkaline minerals that help to balance out the body after they are digested. In this respect, they are similar to lemons, which are one of the most alkaline foods available.
• Oranges provide smart carbs and do not cause a blood sugar spike. Oranges like all fruits have simple sugars in them, but the orange has a glycemic index of 40. Anything under 55 is considered low. This means as long as you don’t eat too many oranges at one time, they won’t spike your blood sugar and cause problems with insulin or weight gain.