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The Health Benefits of Citrus Fruits

It's winter! And that means citrus fruits are at their delicious peak. Load up on oranges, grapefruit, lemons and limes for flavor, color and these 7 health benefits:

1. Vitamins and plant compounds

Citrus fruits are high in vitamins, especially vitamin C. Just one medium-sized orange has the full daily recommended amount of vitamin C. Citrus fruits are also rich in plant compounds, which have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects.

2. Fiber

Fiber improves digestion and helps us lose weight. Citrus fruits are a good source. One cup of orange segments has four grams of fiber.

3. Low calorie

Citrus fruits are low in calories, but their water and fiber content helps you feel full. That's great news if you're counting calories like me!

4. Fighting kidney stones

Citrus fruits can boost levels of citrate in the body, which can help prevent kidney stones from forming.

5. Fighting cancer

Lots of studies suggest citrus fruits can help prevent or suppress some cancers, including lung, breast and pancreatic. The plant compounds in citrus fruits get much of the credit.

6. Boosting Heart Health

A study in Japan suggests a diet high in citrus fruits reduces the risk for heart disease and stroke. Other research suggests these fruits can improve cholesterol levels.

7. Protecting Your Brain

Plant compounds in citrus fruits may help fight inflammation that causes deterioration of the nervous system. This could help combat Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease.

Click here for more on the benefits (and the downside) of citrus fruits.

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