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What Happens to Your Body When You Eat Oranges

Are they as healthy as apples? We take a look at the research.

Many of us know that eating an apple a day can reap some serious positive benefits for your overall health, but would the same happen if you eat oranges?

Oranges are known for being packed with Vitamin C, but we went digging to uncover what that means for your body, and whether or not there are other nutrients in this bright orange fruit that can also be making a difference in our health—for better or worse. Here's what happens when you eat oranges, and for even more healthy tips, check out The 7 Healthiest Foods to Eat Right Now.

You'll boost your immune system.

oranges in bowl

This is probably not the first time you've heard that oranges can boost your immune system. It's pretty much the oranges claim to fame, and it's all thanks to that vitamin C. According to a 2018 review, the Vitamin C in oranges not only protects cells by searching for and neutralizing significant immune threats like environmental pollution and cigarette smoke, but it can also boost your general immunity to viruses and infections. This explains why you'll want to pour yourself a tall glass of orange juice on days that you're feeling under the weather.

Related: Does Orange Juice Really Help With a Cold? We Asked an Expert

You could lower your risk for certain cancers.

orange slices

You can actually thank the vitamin C for this as well. Medical News Today reports that eating oranges can help to combat cancer-causing free radicals. A 2013 study published in the Indian Journal of Clinical Biochemistry found that the presence of vitamin C and folic acid in addition to the antioxidants in oranges can lower the risk of DNA damage, and ultimately, cancer.

While this may be the case, other studies have shown that the amount of vitamin C needed to lower your risk of cancer is more than someone could actually consume. We're talking 300 oranges' worth of vitamin C, according to one study's authors. So there definitely has to be more research done on cancer and vitamin C to know for sure of the benefits.

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You'll improve your skin.

oranges and yogurt

Next time you're having a breakout, reach for an orange. That's right, this sweet, juicy fruit can be your key to clear skin. Vitamin C is a direct contributor to collagen production, according to a 2017 study published in Nutrients, which is known to be essential for strengthening your skin.

Additionally, a 2014 medical review found that vitamin C consumed through your diet (AKA eating oranges) was found to improve skin roughness, wrinkling, and elasticity. We're all in on an orange-driven skincare routine.

Here are the 33 Best Foods for Glowing Skin That's Blemish-Free.

You could improve your heart health.

oranges juice

Vitamin C isn't the only beneficial nutrient in oranges. It's the fiber and potassium found in this fruit that is so essential to improving overall heart health. Dietary fiber has been shown to significantly reduce the risk of heart disease. Oranges have approximately 3 grams of dietary fiber per one medium orange.

According to the U.S. National Institutes of Health, not getting enough potassium can lead to heart issues like an irregular heartbeat or increase blood pressure. Therefore, the potassium boost that comes from eating an orange or drinking a glass of orange juice can be essential to improving your heart health.

They help to lower blood sugar levels.

Mathilde Langevin/ Unsplash

Another benefit of the fiber found in oranges is its ability to lower blood sugar levels. This is extremely helpful for those who have type 1 or type 2 diabetes, but also individuals who could be at risk of developing high blood sugar. The American Diabetes Association even has oranges on its list of diabetes superfoods.

So, next time you're at the grocery store, be sure to stock up on this orange fruit. Plus, here are 5 Ways Fruit Can Help You Lose Weight!

Rachel Linder
Rachel is an Associate Editor responsible for compiling the daily Eat This, Not That! newsletter, making TikTok and YouTube videos for the brand, writing articles for the site, creating original graphics and providing direct assistance to the editors when needed. Read more about Rachel
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