Freshly squeezed citrus juices have been a staple of the morning breakfast routine for years. Long known to be a great source of vitamin C, orange juice, along with a slew of other citrus fruits, can also provide a bevy of other nutritional benefits.
An article in Men's Fitness recently examined the importance of adding citrus foods to your regular diet. Heather R. Mangieri, owner of Nutrition Checkup, LLC stated that "Citrus fruits as a whole are packed with beneficial antioxidants and essential nutrients that can promote heart health and maybe even reduce the risk of some chronic diseases, like cancer." Furthermore, studies have shown that some citrus foods like grapefruit can help with weight control due its fiber content. They can also help contribute to feelings of fullness.
While citrus fruits aren't always in season, there are lots of ways that you can incorporate them into your diet when they are. First off, the option is always there to juice them. Having a glass of fresh grapefruit or orange juice in the morning could be that perfect pick-me-up that you've been looking for. However, you can also get creative. Try incorporating oranges into your salads, or grapefruits into your homemade salsas!
Citrus fruits are also a great way to add some flavor to your regular old glass of water. Avoid those sweetened sports drinks (which more likely than not, contain a Scary Seven ingredient) and try squirting some lemon into a glass of water. It's a great way to add some zest to your water without worrying about adding excessive calories or artificial sweeteners. There are also a lot of great health benefits associated with drinking lemon water first thing in the morning.
Citrus fruits are one of the more versatile foods out there, and really can be used in meals for either breakfast, lunch or dinner. For a great and flavorful salad, check out this recipe for a Thai Citrus Chicken Salad. Enjoy!
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