4 ways Oranges keep you healthy
Oranges are loaded with vitamin C and contain carotenoids, folate, fiber, and potassium, they also strengthen your immune system, help your heart, and protect you from cancer. And don’t forget how sweet and delicious they are.
* BOOSTS YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM – You may never get cancer or have a heart attack, but you will catch a cold. This pesky inconvenience strikes everyone at one time or another.
But thanks to oranges and their high levels of vitamin C, your cold won’t stick around long. Vitamin C spurs your body’s immune system into action so you can fight off germs. Although experts say vitamin C doesn’t reduce the number of colds you get, it does cut down on how long and how seriously you’re sick.
If you’re extremely active, you may benefit even more from vitamin C. Some studies show people under heavy physical stress cut their risk of catching a cold in half if they take vitamin C.
Even though many fruits and vegetables contain this nutrient, oranges are a great source, averaging more than 69 milligrams (mg) – close to a full day’s recommended amount. So start eating oranges, and stop sniffling, sneezing, and coughing.
* BANISHES PNEUMONIA AND BRONCHITIS – Even if you have a respiratory problem more serious than the common cold, vitamin C can help.
Several studies show extra vitamin C can cut your risk of developing pneumonia – by up to 80 percent. And with just 200 mg of vitamin C each day, elderly pneumonia or chronic bronchitis patients had fewer symptoms and recovered more easily. That’s three oranges or less than two glasses of orange juice a day.
This eye-popping protection may come from vitamin C’s ability to strengthen your immune system or from its antioxidant powers.
* GUARDS YOUR HEART – Just as a single orange has several juicy sections, all oranges have many powerful weapons to fight heart disease.
Fiber, especially the soluble kind in fruit, helps lower cholesterol. Too much cholesterol can clog or block your arteries, leading to atherosclerosis, heart attack, or stroke. You get 3 grams of fiber per orange, or about 12 percent of the RDA.
Folate neutralizes homocysteine, a dangerous substance that increases clotting and can damage the lining of your blood vessels. One orange provides around 20 percent of the RDA for folate.
Potassium helps keep your blood pressure under control – especially when you limit your sodium intake – and lowers your risk for stroke. An orange has 237 mg of potassium (nearly 12 percent of the RDA) and no sodium.
Vitamin C may lower your blood pressure, improve blood flow, and thrink your risk of stroke. Because it
S an antioxidant, it may fight cholesterol by preventing the low-density lipoprotein 9LDL or bad) cholesterol from becoming oxidized and, consequently, more dangerous to your artery walls.
* THWARTS CANCER – Cancer might e called “the Big C,” but that title rightfully belongs to vitamin C, which looms large in the battle against the disease. Although some tests have shown large doses (10 grams) of vitamin C can treat people with cancer and help them live longer, the antioxidant vitamin mainly shields you from free radicals that can cause cancer. Studies indicate vitamin C may protect you from stomach, throat, long, bladder, and pancreas cancer.