Although many people enjoy oranges, few enjoy orange peels. If you’re not eating the peels of your oranges, you’re missing out on the orange peel benefits. Find out why you should try eating the peels of your citrus fruits.
What Makes Orange Peels Special?
Orange peels are unique in that they contain some elements that the rest of the orange does not contain. Specifically, they have flavonoids such as hesperidin and polymethoxyflavones. They also contain other phytochemicals, which are good for your health.
In fact, the peel of the orange might be so beneficial that it’s healthier than the rest of the orange. The peels contain flavonoids, which are antioxidants that can prevent cancer and other diseases.
Meanwhile, the high amounts of vitamin C also benefit your health. The peel contains more vitamin C than the flesh. While the peel contains 136 milligrams of the vitamin, the flesh only contains 71 milligrams.
Other important nutrients in the peel include the following:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin B
- Dietary fiber
With so many nutrients in the peel, it’s no surprise that there are many orange peel benefits. The bitter taste of the orange might put you off, but the benefits of the peel make it a smart dietary choice.
What Are Some of the Orange Peel Benefits?
Are you ready for some specifics? The following are all orange peel benefits:
1. Improve Your Heart Health
Orange peels and the white pulp under the peels contain hesperidin. In several studies, hesperidin lowered both cholesterol and high blood pressure. Both effects reduce your risk of heart disease.
In one study on middle-aged and overweight men, eating hesperidin from oranges significantly improved diastolic blood pressure in only four weeks1.
The polymethoxylated flavones in the peels of oranges can also improve your heart. According to research, they lower cholesterol more than prescriptions drugs. In addition to being more effective, they don’t come with any side effects. You don’t need to compromise your overall health for heart health.
2. Fight Cancer
RLIP76 is a protein that scientists link with obesity and cancer. However, the flavonoids in orange peels can inhibit that protein. Although research is still in progress, studies point towards orange peel extract as a way to prevent chronic diseases2.
In mice, eliminating the RLIP76 gene means that there is no possibility for obesity, diabetes, high cholesterol, and cancer. It’s possible that the same effect could occur in humans.
It’s worth noting that orange peels aren’t the only peels that can fight cancer. Other citrus fruits have peels that contain flavenoids. Studies show that the polymethoxyflavones in orange peels and other citrus peels prevent carcinogenesis. They block cancer cells from moving around your circulatory system. Additionally, they prevent new blood vessels from forming and feeding tumors.
There are many reasons to believe that one of the orange peel benefits is the ability to fight off cancer. Whether or not you have a genetic predisposition to cancer, you might consider eating orange peels.
3. Reduce Inflammation and Allergies
Some of the compounds in orange peels can prevent the release of histamines3. As the chemical that causes allergic reactions, histamines are the reason you feel bad after an allergic interaction.
By eating orange peels, you can limit your chance at having allergic reactions. You can also fight off colds. With a high concentration of vitamin C, orange peels boost your immune system and keep illness away. The peels may help you get phlegm out of your lungs.
As far as inflammation goes, orange peels can help you. The peels of citrus fruits work in a similar way as an anti-inflammatory drug called indomethacin.
4. Lose Weight
According to Ayurveda, one of the orange peel benefits is the ability to speed up your metabolism. There aren’t many studies to back this up. However, people often report success when using orange peels for weight loss.
There is some evidence supporting this. Orange peels are low in calories and high in fiber. As a result, they could make weight loss easier.
5. Better Oral Health
If you have bad breath or sensitive teeth, orange peels can help. By chewing on some peels, you can improve your breath in a natural way. You can also whiten your teeth.
You should use orange peels on your teeth sparingly. Because orange peels are acidic, they can do damage to your teeth. Only use them as teeth whitening agents occasionally.
Are There Other Ways To Get Orange Peel Benefits?
Orange peels are unique in that they contain many compounds you can’t find in other fruits or vegetables. However, there are other fruit peels and rinds that can benefit you.
For example, the stems of swiss chard boost your immune system. Celery tops are extremely high in magnesium and calcium. Even onion skins can improve your health.
How to Eat the Peels
Despite the many benefits in other types of peels, you should still consider incorporating orange peels into your diet. But you don’t need to take a bite out of an orange. Instead, there are ways in which you can enjoy the skin of the fruit.
One common way of eating orange peels is to zest them. You can zest your peels and add them to salads, yogurt, and vegetables. It gives your food more flavor and allows you to get the orange peel benefits.
If you enjoy a good smoothie, you can blend your orange peel directly into the smoothie. If possible, include some of the white pulp. This allows you to get the most nutrition from the fruit.
Finally, you could look up some recipes for orange peels. There are ways in which you can cook them to get a tasty addition to your diet.
No matter how you eat your orange peels, be sure to wash them. Even organic fruit needs a good washing. By washing the fruit first, you can prevent eating pesticides.
The benefits of eating orange peels are well worth the effort. In fact, you might actually enjoy the peels. You can improve your health and keep your taste buds happy.
If you are not able to obtain adequate amounts of vitamin C from your food consider adding a whole food Vitamin C supplement to your daily regimen.
References: 1. https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article/93/1/73/4597707, Hesperidin contributes to the vascular protective effects of orange juice: a randomized crossover study in healthy volunteers, 10 November 2010 2. https://www.cityofhope.org/blog/obesity-protein-clinical-trials, ORANGE RIND COULD AID SEARCH FOR ANTI-CANCER, ANTI-OBESITY DRUG, July 26, 2013 3. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s13596-012-0093-z, Anti-histamine release and anti-inflammatory activities of aqueous extracts of citrus fruits peels, 01 November 2012