Winter has finally arrived and with the cold weather comes loads of lovely new season fresh produce to enjoy. Winter is also synonymous with colds and flu, but happily Nature has taken care of this by providing us with the perfect natural immune booster – citrus fruit – which is now in season – perfectly timed for cold and flu season!
Citrus fruits are not only zesty, sharp and juicy, they packed full with essential vitamins! Here are our top five reasons for why you should be eating at least one citrus fruit a day this Winter:
- Studies have shown that including citrus in your diet can significantly lower your risk of having a stroke.
- Citrus fruits help to stabilise blood sugar and have even been shown to prevent weight gain.
- Not only does Vitamin C in citrus fruits prevent colds and fly, it can also help you to see better: Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that inhibits damage to the body by free radicals and prevents scurvy. Recently, scientists at the Oregon Health & Science University showed that our eyes’ retinas require vitamin C for their nerve cells to function properly and therefore maintain better eyesight. To meet your daily needs: A lemon with peel provides 111 percent two clementines, 96 percent; a medium orange, 93 percent; and half a pink or red grapefruit, 51 percent.
- Lemons can help you to reduce stress! Japanese research showed that ‘linalool’, an aromatic compound found in lemons, altered blood chemistry and gene activity to reduce stress levels in rats exposed to challenging conditions. Inhaling linalool lowered the activity of more than 100 genes that usually rev up in stressful situations. Make some hot water and add in some lemon slices while sitting at your desk and help to calm yourself.
- Scientists have proven that mandarins help to prevent cancer as they inhibit tumour growth.
The citrus family includes the following fruits (among many others):
In South Africa, it is the Eastern Cape that produces the most citrus in the country, followed by Limpopo, Mpumalanga, the Western Cape and KwaZulu-Natal.
We have a lovely array of citrus fruits in all of our stores which are fresh from the market every day.
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