Citrus fruits are fruits produced by trees and shrubs belonging to the Rutaceae genus of plants. They include fruits like oranges, grapefruits, lemons, and lime.


Citrus fruits are fruits produced by trees and shrubs belonging to the Rutaceae genus of plants. They include fruits like oranges, grapefruits, lemons, and lime.

They have a high citric acid content and are typically round or elongated with a juicy, fleshy pulp surrounding their seeds. The peel of citrus fruits is leathery, the outermost layer of which is called ‘zest’ that is used in the preparation of many desserts for its flavour. The peel is covered underneath with a white, spongy pith.

Typically, citrus fruit can be found separated into segments (called ‘liths’) after peeling. Do you know those white hair-like things that you pick off of an orange slice before popping it into your mouth? They actually provide nutrition to the fruit as it grows. Lemons, limes, and oranges are believed to have come from Asia before gradually making their way to other parts of the world.


Different citrus fruits have different nutrition, but all citrus fruits have varied amounts of the following vitamins and minerals:

Vitamin A
Vitamin C
Vitamin B6

Health Benefits

They can help to prevent cancer1
They’re full of antioxidants
They may help reduce inflammation
The fiber in them is beneficial for your immune system2
They’re notoriously high in vitamin C
They’re full of healthy metabolites3
Many varieties of citrus are low in sugar
They can reduce the risk of kidney stones4

Keep your skin young and youthful:

Vitamin C is the best option for our skin health. They are the storehouse of vitamin C that makes them essential for good skin. Vitamin C or ascorbic acid is needed to regenerate collagen in your skin. Collagen helps in skin tightening and reduces fine lines over the skin. Citrus fruits are beneficial to lock your skin’s youthfulness and charm.

They’re Rich in Vitamins and Plant Compounds

They are an excellent source of vitamin C, a nutrient that strengthens the immune system and keeps your skin smooth and elastic. In fact, just one medium orange has all the vitamin C you need in a day.

Citrus fruits also have good amounts of other vitamins and minerals that your body needs to function properly, including B vitamins, potassium, phosphorous, magnesium and copper.

Additionally, they are rich in plant compounds that have various health benefits, including anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects. These compounds include over 60 varieties of flavonoids, carotenoids and essential oils, and they are responsible for many of citrus fruit’s health benefits

They May Reduce Your Risk of Kidney Stones

Kidney stones are painful mineral crystals. They can form when your urine is very concentrated or when you have higher-than-normal amounts of stone-forming minerals in your urine. One type of kidney stone is caused by low levels of citrate in urine.

Many fruits and vegetables, especially citrus fruits, can raise the levels of citrate in your urine, lowering the risk of kidney stones. Drinking citrus juices and eating these fruits can offer a natural alternative to potassium citrate supplements. According to data on American eating habits over the last 40 years, kidney stones are more common in people who eat fewer citrus fruits.

They May Help Fight or Protect Against Cancer

Many studies have linked citrus fruits to a reduced risk of certain cancers. In one study, people who ate one grapefruit or drank one serving of grapefruit juice daily had a lower risk of lung cancer. Other studies have suggested that citrus fruits may also protect against oesophageal, stomach, breast and pancreatic cancers.

These fruits contain a host of plant compounds, including flavonoids, that may help protect against cancer. Some of these flavonoids act as antioxidants and may block the expression of certain genes that are responsible for some degenerative diseases, including cancer. Citrus fruits may also help fight cancer by suppressing cancers, blocking the formation of new cancers and making carcinogens inactive.

They Contain Nutrients That Boost Heart Health

Eating citrus fruits could be good for your heart. In fact, a Japanese study found that people who ate higher amounts of these fruits had lower rates of heart disease and stroke. Several compounds in citrus fruits can improve markers of heart health.

For example, their soluble fibre and flavonoids may improve cholesterol levels by raising “good” HDL cholesterol and lowering “bad” LDL cholesterol and triglycerides. And many of the flavonoids in citrus fruits, including one called naringin, are strong antioxidants that benefit the heart in several ways.

May Protect Your Brain

The flavonoids in citrus fruits may help ward off neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, which result from the breakdown of cells in the nervous system.

In part, these diseases are caused by inflammation. Flavonoids found in citrus fruits have anti-inflammatory capabilities that are thought to help protect against the chain of events that causes the nervous system to deteriorate.

Specific types of flavonoids, including hesperidin and apigenin, have been shown to protect brain cells and improve brain function in mice and test-tube studies.

Low In Calories

For people who like to keep track of their calorie intake, citrus fruits are a great way to fill your stomach without taking in too many calories. Following are some citrus fruits along with their calorific content:

Orange: 84.6 cal

Grapefruit: 73.6 cal

Tangerine: 103 cal

Lime: 20.1 cal

This article is jointly authored by Masood Ahmad and Afira Arfan from Punjab Academy of Sciences Tehsil: Arifwala