Oranges are ubiquitous everywhere in the world. Oranges are nutritious, and every part of the orange is practical (save for the seeds). Usually, we remove the orange peels because they don’t have the same flavor as the pulp, and people are just used to discard the fruit’s outer skin. But did you know that many experts believe that eating orange people is good for you? The orange peel contains nutrients that are awesome for health, and when you find out what they make an offer, you’d be surprised that you would rather not throw them away when you are eating oranges at home.
Is It Safe to Eat Orange Peel?
Orange peels don’t have the same sweetness and flavor of juicy fruit inside, so some think they may not be edible. However, science dictates that orange peels are not poisonous, they’re OK for your digestion, and they have been used for decades in cooking. Home cooks and chefs routinely zest orange peel to add acidity and flavor to dishes like pasta.
There are some downsides to consuming orange peel.
For one, whole orange peel is not as flavorful as the fruit, so that you may have time chewing through it and swallowing the orange peel. Second, we are aware that commercial production entails using herbicides and pesticides to control fruit damage due to bugs and other critters that attack oranges.
There is a big chance that you might be ingesting some chemicals as you consume the orange peel. Washing the oranges thoroughly might help, but there may still be residues. If you want to avoid this risk, we recommend sourcing your oranges from an organic farmer’s market. The produce sold in an organic market may be smaller and more expensive than commercial oranges, but at least these are safer.
What Are the Benefits of Orange Peel?
Assuming that you have found a way to get around the possible chemical residues found in orange peels, there are some benefits to eating this part of the orange. If you end up consuming the orange peel, you are in for a treat. The orange peel is packed with nutrients, too.
The peel contains a larger quantity of dietary fiber compared to the pulp inside. And wonder of wonders, orange peel also contains antioxidants called flavonoids. In general, oranges pack plenty of nutrients in one go, so if you need healthy plant compounds like polyphenols and a generous amount of vitamin C and fiber after every meal, eat oranges.
What is truly interesting about orange peels is that just one whole tablespoon of the stuff will provide 14% of the RDA for vitamin C. This may not sound like much until you realize that the orange peel has three times more vitamin C than the fruit inside. If you eat as much orange peel as you do the orange fruit, you will quickly get four times as much vitamin C in the process.
Why are we getting excited over vitamin C?
A diet rich in vitamin C and antioxidants has been proven to be very beneficial to the heart. Combine oranges with wine, tea, grains, and other vegetables, and you already have the formula for a long and healthy life. People who suffer from metabolic syndrome and similar health conditions will likely have inflammation and blood pressure issues. Oranges and similar food can help with these issues, surely.
Vitamin C isn’t the only nutrient found in orange peels. Orange peel also provides vitamin A, B-vitamins, and calcium. These three nutrients support the normal functioning of many organs, including the liver and skin. Vitamin A and vitamin C, mainly, are essential for the normal development of bones and teeth in general. There is a big reason why dairy products and orange juice are both staples at breakfast – both are easy ways to get more vitamin C, calcium, B-vitamins, and vitamin A into kids since many kids are picky eaters.
What about the pith or the white part of the orange peel? The center is somewhat fibrous and bitter. Is the pith still beneficial to health? It is still helpful to your health. Upon closer examination, the pith provides just as much vitamin C and other nutrients to the body, and this amount of nutrients can help protect you from different kinds of cancer.
Orange peel also naturally contains folate, which is critical for normal pregnancy. Further down the list of benefits, eating oranges and food with the same nutrient profile can help remedy obesity and diabetes mellitus. There may be some minor benefits for people who have Alzheimer’s disease and other chronic, degenerative conditions.
Interestingly, in one scientific study, researchers discovered that the polyphenols found in the orange peel are more potent and active than the polyphenols found in the fruit. Polyphenols like hesperidin are abundant in orange peel, and today these are being studied further for their anti-cancer benefits.
Is Orange Peel Good for Weight Loss?
Oranges possess anti-obesity properties, which makes this fruit suitable for many weight loss efforts. Unless you are on a unique weight loss routine that de-emphasizes fruits, sugars, and carbohydrates in general, you can eat oranges daily as part of your healthy weight loss diet.
There are a couple of reasons why oranges are perfect for weight loss. The first reason is that it is naturally rich in dietary fiber. Dietary fiber traps fat and toxins and softens the stool, allowing for faster movement. If you suffer from constipation, eat some oranges (along with the orange peel) can help regulate your digestion.
There is also proof that vitamin C can help improve fat burn in the body. So as you consume more vitamin C, the body’s fat burn rate is also enhanced.