Fresh citrus provide a tangy sweet and refreshing option to your typical fruits, while packing a host of essential nutrients that are associated with good health throughout the lifetime.

 

Fresh citrus offer many health benefits, such as:

Antioxidants An entire medium orange or half of a medium grapefruit (154 grams) provides 100 percent or more of the recommended Daily Value for vitamin C. Vitamin C is an important antioxidant. Antioxidants may help neutralize free radicals formed as part of the body’s natural oxidation processes. Many scientists believe the long term presence of excessive free radicals may damage cells and tissues and contribute to the development of certain chronic diseases.

Weight Management Those trying to maintain a healthy weight should consume fruits and vegetables with high water content, like oranges or grapefruit, to help create a sense of fullness and satisfaction. A medium orange or half of a medium grapefruit is fat-free and contains no more than 80 calories.

Heart Health Fresh citrus fruit deliver key nutrients that may be associated with heart health indicators. Hesperidin, a phytochemical found in oranges, has been associated with lower blood pressure.1 Pectin, a soluble fiber found in citrus fruit, may help to maintain healthy cholesterol levels.2 Fresh citrus is sodium-free, saturated fat-free, and cholesterol-free and can be a part of a heart-healthy diet and lifestyle.

Immune System Support Citrus delivers vitamin C, plus other nutrients and phytochemicals that may help support a healthy immune system.

Fruit Intake Adding citrus to your diet can help you meet fruit intake recommendations.3 Americans, especially children and adolescents, fall well short of meeting fruit intake recommendations.4-6 Remember to make half of your plate fruits and vegeables.7

Skin Health Vitamin C found in fresh citrus can help support collagen production, which may support healthy skin and gums. Collagen breakdown in the skin may lead to the appearance of premature aging.

Vitamin Absorption Citrus are high in vitamin C, which may help aid the absorption of non-heme iron (the iron found in plants like spinach, not meat products). Vitamin C-rich foods should be consumed daily to help get the most iron from foods.3

Reduce Cancer Risk Low fat diets rich in fruits and vegetables (foods that are low in fat and may contain dietary fiber, vitamin A, or vitamin C) may reduce the risk of some types of cancer, a disease associated with many factors.8

 

Get a look inside your fruit

In addition to supplying a variety of vitamins and minerals, fresh Florida citrus is also:

  • Fat free
  • Saturated fat free
  • Sodium free
  • Cholesterol free
  • Free of added sugars

Typical Nutrition Values for 1 Medium Orange (154 g)

% Daily Value*

Energy 80 Calories
Calories from fat 0
Total carbohydrate 19 g (6%)
Dietary fiber 3 g (12%)
Sugars 14 g 
Protein 1 g
Total fat 0 g (0%)
Sodium 0 mg (0%)
Potassium 250 mg (7%)
Vitamin C 130%
Thiamin 10%
Niacin 2%
Folate  10%
Calcium 6%
Vitamin B6 4%
Magnesium 4%
Vitamin A 2%

Not a significant source of saturated fat, cholesterol or iron.

* Percent Daily Value based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

Data source: FDA, Appendix C to Part 101.--Nutrition Facts for Raw Fruits and Vegetables, Revised 7/25/2006, effective 1/1/2008. Data for thiamin, niacin, folate, vitamin B6 and magnesium from the USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 19 (NDB 09200), accessed 6/4/2007.

Nutritional values may vary based on the variety of citrus fruit and place of origin. Refer to the USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference at http://www.ars.usda.gov/main/site_main.htm?modecode=12354500 or check with your citrus vendor for additional information.

Information is not intended for labeling food in packaged form.



Typical Nutrition Values for 1/2 Medium Grapefruit(154 g)

% Daily Value*

Energy 60 calories
Calories from fat 0
Total carbohydrate 15 g (5%)
Dietary fiber 2 g (8%)
Sugars 11 g 
Protein 1 g
Total fat 0 g (0%)
Sodium 0 mg (0%)
Potassium 160 mg (5%)
Vitamin C 100%
Thiamin 4%
Niacin 2%
Folate  4%
Calcium 4%
Vitamin B6 4%
Magnesium 4%
Vitamin A** 35%**

Not a significant source of saturated fat, cholesterol or iron.

* Percent Daily Value based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

**Pink or red grapefruit

Data source: FDA, Appendix C to Part 101.--Nutrition Facts for Raw Fruits and Vegetables, Revised 7/25/2006, effective 1/1/2008. Data for thiamin, niacin, folate, vitamin B6 and magnesium from the USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 20 (NDB 09112), accessed 9/24/2008.

Nutritional values may vary based on the variety of citrus fruit and place of origin. Refer to the USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference at http://www.ars.usda.gov/main/site_main.htm?modecode=12354500 or check with your citrus vendor for additional information.

Information is not intended for labeling food in packaged form. 



Typical Nutrition Values for 1 Medium Tangerine(109 g)

% Daily Value*

Energy 50 Calories
Calories from fat 0
Total carbohydrate 13 g (4%)
Dietary fiber 2 g (8%)
Sugars 9 g 
Protein 1 g
Total fat 0 g (0%)
Sodium 0 mg (0%)
Potassium 160 mg (5%)
Vitamin C 45%
Thiamin 4%
Niacin 2%
Folate  4%
Calcium 4%
Vitamin B6 4%
Magnesium 4%
Vitamin A 6%

Not a significant source of saturated fat, cholesterol or iron.

* Percent Daily Value based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

Data source: FDA, Appendix C to Part 101.--Nutrition Facts for Raw Fruits and Vegetables, Revised 7/25/2006, effective 1/1/2008. Data for thiamin, niacin, folate, vitamin B6 and magnesium from the USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 19 (NDB 09218), accessed 6/5/2007.

Nutritional values may vary based on the variety of citrus fruit and place of origin. Refer to the USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference at http://www.ars.usda.gov/main/site_main.htm?modecode=12354500 or check with your citrus vendor for additional information.

Information is not intended for labeling food in packaged form.

 

What makes fresh Florida citrus so great for you?

Vitamin C

A medium orange or half of a medium grapefruit (154 grams), or a medium tangerine (109 grams) are excellent sources of vitamin C.

A medium orange or half of a medium grapefruit (154 grams) provides 100 percent or more of the Daily Value for vitamin C and a medium tangerine (109 grams) provides 45% of the Daily Value for vitamin C. Citrus fruit and juices are primary contributors of vitamin C in the diet.9

Vitamin C is a nutrient known to be important to the immune system and intake of vitamin C-rich foods may help support a healthy immune system.

Vitamin C can help support collagen production which is important for skin, bones, cartilage, muscle and blood vessels.

Vitamin A & Carotenoids

Half of a medium red or pink grapefruit is an excellent source of vitamin A.

Carotenoids are pigments found naturally in some foods, primarily fruits and vegetables.

Pink and red grapefruit contain beta-carotene, a carotenoid that helps give grapefruit its color and serves as a source of vitamin A in the diet.

In the body, vitamin A can help support reproduction and growth, immune function, and healthy vision.

Fiber

A medium orange (154 grams) is a good source of fiber and half of a medium grapefruit (154 grams) or a medium tangerine (109 grams) offers 8% of the Daily Value for fiber.

Foods that contain dietary fiber may help maintain healthy cholesterol levels and assist with digestion and elimination.

According to the World Cancer Research Fund and American Institute for Cancer Research, there is evidence that diets high in fiber may help to reduce the risk of some forms of cancer.11

Potassium

A medium orange supplies 7% of the Daily Value for potassium and half of medium grapefruit or a medium tangerine supplies 5% of the Daily Value for potassium.

Potassium is a mineral important for muscle function, nerve transmission, pH maintenance (acid/base balance), and maintaining fluid and electrolyte balance.

Potassium has been identified as a Nutrient of Concern in the Dietary Guidelines for Americans,3 meaning that many Americans do not get enough of this important mineral.

Folate

A medium orange (154 g) is a good source of folate.

Folate is important for cell division and the production of healthy red blood cells.

Folate is essential for growth and development and may help reduce the risk of birth defects of the brain and spinal cord, known as neural tube defects.

To help reduce the risk of someday having a baby with a neural tube defect, women capable of becoming pregnant should get 400 micrograms of the synthetic form of folate (folic acid) every day while consuming food folate (the form found in foods and beverages such as oranges) from a varied diet.12

Folate may significantly modify homocysteine (an amino acid) levels in the body. High levels of homocysteine in the blood have been associated with an increased risk of coronary heart disease.12

Phytonutrients

Phytochemicals are any chemicals that come from a plant. Phytonutrients are the subgroup of those plant components that may have nutrient characteristics when consumed by animals. Phytonutrients typically occur in very small amounts and when consumed, may provide people with nutritional or health benefits.

Magnesium

A medium orange or tangerine and half of a medium grapefruit each supply 4% of the Daily Value for magnesium.

Magnesium helps the body generate energy from the foods we eat and is required for the action of many enzyme systems.

Diets rich in fruits and vegetables that provide key minerals such as potassium, calcium, and magnesium may help contribute to maintaining healthy blood pressure.16

Magnesium may play an important role in bone health, so diets rich in foods with magnesium, such as fruits and vegetables, can optimize the intake of micronutrients required for bone health.17

Thiamin

A medium orange (154 g) is a good source of thiamin.

Thiamin is a water-soluble vitamin associated with the action of many enzyme systems and helps the body process energy from the food we eat.

Foods and beverages that are good sources of thiamin should be included as part of any healthy diet.

Calcium

A medium orange supplies 6% of the Daily Value for calcium.

Calcium aids in bone and tooth development, blood pressure regulation and muscle function.

Calcium has been identified as one of four Nutrients of Concern in the Dietary Guidelines for Americans.3

In the U.S., 10 million individuals are estimated to have osteoporosis and almost 34 million more are estimated to have low bone density, placing them at increased risk for osteoporosis and broken bones.15

Flavonoids

Fresh oranges, grapefruit and tangerines contain a variety of phytonutrients, some of which are known as flavonoids, a class of natural compounds.

Hesperidin and naringin are the most common flavonoids found in oranges and grapefruit, respectively. Tangerines contain the flavonoids tangeretin and nobelitin.

Some flavonoids have been associated with beneficial effects on the cardiovascular system, skin and bones.13 Flavonoids primarily found in citrus have been associated with improvements in markers of inflammation.14

References

  1. Morand C et al. Am J Clin Nutr. 2011;93:73–80.
  2. Theuwissen E et al. Physiology & Behavior. 2008;94:285-292. 
  3. USDA. 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. www.cnpp.usda.gov/dietaryguidelines.htm. Accessed November 8, 2011.
  4. Krebs-Smith SM et al. J Nutr. 2010;140:1832-1838.
  5. Kimmons J et al. Medscape J Med. 2009;11:26.
  6. Lorson BA et al. J Am Diet Assoc. 2009;109:474-478.
  7. USDA. MyPlate. www.choosemyplate.gov. Accessed November 29, 2011.
  8. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Center for Food Safety & Applied Nutrition.  A Food Labeling Guide. September, 1994 (Editorial revisions June, 1999). Appendix C: Health Claims. http://www.cfsan.fda.gov/~dms/flg-6c.html. Accessed November 8, 2011.
  9. Chun O et al. J Nutr. 2010;140:317-324.
  10. Present Knowledge in Nutrition. Ninth Edition. Barbara A. Bowman and Robert M. Russell (eds). Washington, DC: International Life Sciences Institute, 2006. 
  11. World Cancer Research Fund/American Institute for Cancer Research. Food, Nutrition, Physical Activity, and the Prevention of Cancer: a Global Perspective. Washington, DC: AICR, 2007.
  12. Food and Nutrition Board, Institute of Medicine. Dietary Reference Intakes for Thiamin, Riboflavin, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Folate, Vitamin B12, Pantothenic Acid, Biotin, and Choline. Washington DC: National Academy Press, 1998.
  13. Yao LH et al. Plant Foods for Human Nutrition. 2004;59:113-122.
  14. Landberg R et al. J Nutr. 2011;141:618-625.
  15. National Osteoporosis Foundation. www.nof.org. Accessed November 8, 2011. 
  16. Appel LJ et al. Hypertension. 2006;47:296-308.
  17. Nieves JW. Am J Clin Nutr. 2005;81(suppl):1232S-1239S.