Lemons – Nutritional information

Lemons are quite a popular fruit even though they are used in small quantities. However, they are not frequently consumed by themselves for their taste is quite intense and sour.

Back in the early exploration times lemons were used to as a prevention or a treatment of curvy – a common condition in those days, which resulted from a deficiency of vitamin C. This disease was really common among the sailors and in 1747 lemons (and oranges, as well) were found to
be effective in its treatment.

This fruit contains plenty of amazing nutrients and have many benefits for our health.
Lemons do not ripen, neither improve in quality, after they are picked and because of this they should be picked when they are in their peak ripeness.
They are acidic fruits and as such they may negatively affect people who have mouth ulcers or GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease).

Nutritional values

Per 100g lemons, raw without peel

Protein 1.1g
Fats 0.3g
Carbohydrates 9.3g
Calories 29
Dietary fiber 2.8g
Vitamin A 22 IU
Vitamin C 53mg
Vitamin E 0.2mg
Niacin 0.1mg
Vitamin B6 0.1mg
Folate 11mcg
Pantothenic Acid 0.2mg
Choline 5.1mg
Calcium 26mg
Iron 0.6mg
Magnesium 8mg
Phosphorus 16mg
Potassium 138mg
Sodium 2mg
Zinc 0.1mg
Selenium 0.4mcg

General information

They are good for the health of the heart due to their high vitamin C content. Lemons reduce the chance of stroke or heart diseases. However, the plant compounds and the fiber in this fruits also lowers the risk of developing heart disease due to lowering the effect of some risk factors. One study has shown that 4 weeks consumption of lemons lowered the cholesterol in participants’blood. Lemons contain diosmin and hesperidin, which can lower the cholesterol.

This fruit also helps to prevent kidney stones. Kidney stones form when waste products build up in your kidneys and crystallize there. They are quite common and since the citric acid may increase the volume and the pH of the urine, the lemons may be helpful in preventing this
disease. Some studies have also shown that the lemonade can also help the prevention but more research is needed on those topics.

It is thought that lemons can promote the weight loss. It is believed that this effect is due to the soluble pectin fiber, which they contain. People think that is expands in the stomach and makes the person feel full for a longer period of time. Nevertheless, remember that lemon juice does not contain pectin and is, thus, ineffective for the feeling of satiety. Some research has shown that the lemon’s plant compounds can reduce or prevent the gaining of weight.

Another beneficial effect of the lemons is that they may protect you against anemia. This is a common condition cause by deficiency of iron. Lemons do have some iron but they mostly work by increasing the absorption of iron from other plant foods.

They also improve the health of your digestive systems. They contain soluble fiber, mostly pectin, which lead to plenty of health benefits including improving the gut health and reducing the levels of blood sugar – due to slowing down the digestion of starches and sugars. However, these benefits are lost when the lemons are made into juice.

Some studies (observational ones) found out that those who eat citrus fruits tend to have lower cancer risk. Still, other studies have not supported it. Nevertheless, some researchers believe that the lemon’s plant compounds may have anticarcinogenic effect.

Lemons can also be beneficial for the skin due to their vitamin C content. Vitamin C is essential for the formation of collagen – the tissue that forms the support of the skin. It can improve the texture of the skin, reduce wrinkles and fight the damage on the skin caused by pollution or by
the Sun.

It is thought that they can lower the risk of asthma, too. That is also thanks to, partially, the vitamin C in the lemons. However, this topic needs further investigation.

With what foods can we eat lemons?

You can consume the lemons by themselves. Alternatively, you can put some lemon juice over your fish dish.
They can be put in many drinks, salad dressings, sauces, marinades and desserts.
Lemons are used in lots of Mediterranean dishes and desserts. They are commonly paired with shrimp, chicken or scallops. They go well with sweet or savory dishes.

They go well with goat cheese, coconut, honey, blackberries and blueberries.
Lemons may be used as a marinade for fish, meat or poultry.

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