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Citrus fruits are probably the oldest fruits in the history of cultivation. In fact, the fruit of a citrus tree is mentioned in a document written by (allegedly) Confucius dating 500 B.C.

The original orange was small, full of seeds and very bitter. Continuous cultivation and selection has produced the delicious sweet variety that we enjoy today. Unless it is killed by frost or fire, the orange tree lives to a ripe old age, bearing fruit throughout its lifetime.

An item of trivis: In Queen Victoria's day, oranges were a treasured Christmas gift in England.

Oranges are clearly the most popular fruit consumed to day in the United States. They are available year-round, but their peak season is January to May. The best quality orange is firm and heavy. Lighter oranges contain less juice.

The orange is a subtropical fruit, and it contains a citric acid content of 1.5 percent. The orange is best eaten with other tropical or subtropical fruits, with acid fruits, or with nuts or milk.

Oranges are delicious either cut into wedges or juiced. Like all citrus fruit, a significant quantity of vitamins are located in the white pith, between the flesh and the outermost layer of skin. To get the full effect of oranges, juice them, including the white pith, only peeling off the outermost layer of skin.

Because of the acid content, it is important to sip fresh orange or grapefruit juice. Allow it to mix with saliva before swallowing. This neutralizes the acid of the juice before it goes into the stomach.

Beneficial Effects

Oranges are a great source of water-soluble vitamin C. Vitamin C is very unstable. It is destroyed by air and light, so it is important to drink fresh citrus juice immediately after juicing. Citrus fruits are also high in sodium.

Those with poor gums or tooth decay are probably lacking in vitimin C. Gastric and duodenal ulcers are deficient in Vitamin C, so their diet should be supplemented with fresh oranges or grapefruit.

With fevers or colds, drink orange juice freely. The orange is a great part of any juicing regimen.

Quotes about Oranges

  • "There, Leonato, take her back again:
    Give not this rotten orange to your friend;"
    - William Shakespeare, Much Ado About Nothing, 4.1
More interesting resources on oranges:

Nutrition facts for Oranges

62 calories, 0.16 grams fat, Carbohydrates: 15 grams, Fiber: 3 grams, Protein: 1 grams

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