On a cold winter day, nothing adds a burst of sunshine to the gloom more
than a taste of juicy citrus fruit. But winter citrus fruit also adds
a burst of healthful nutrients to your diet.
There are so many good things packed in a piece of citrus. Everyone knows
citrus is a good source of vitamin C, but it also has folate, potassium,
calcium, dietary fiber, niacin and magnesium, among other nutrients. Plus,
citrus fruits have phytochemicals, whose antioxidant powers may help fight
disease. Finally, they're low in calories and have zero fat.
If those aren't reasons enough to add more citrus to your diet, a recent
Danish study published in the
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition says increased intake of vitamin C, via produce such as citrus fruit,
could cut the risk of cardiovascular disease. Now is a great time to take
advantage of all that citrus fruit has to offer, because many varieties
are at their peak during the winter season. Here are some to look for:
- Blood oranges
- Navel oranges
- Mandarin oranges (satsuma oranges, tangerines and clementines are all part
of the mandarin family)
And as there are many types of winter citrus fruits, there are also many
ways to incorporate them into your diet. Many of these fruits, such as
clementines or tangerines, are easy to peel and make a great, on-the-go
snack on their own, or paired with some healthy protein and fat, such
as string cheese or a serving of almonds. Citrus fruit can also be sliced
up and added to yogurt or salads, baked into muffins or juiced and mixed
into juices, smoothies or salad dressings. And nothing beats the bright,
clean taste of a mixed fruit salad.
Do you have any favorite winter fruits or fun citrus recipes? Share with
others in the comments below!