In addition to tasting delicious, oranges are also jam-packed with nutrients, vitamins and minerals that play a crucial role in enhancing overall health. Evidence suggests that oranges provide a host of benefits, from boosting bone health to protecting against cardiovascular disease.
Oranges are a rich source of vitamin C, which might protect against heart disease by improving artery health, according to lead researcher Ingrid Ellingsen and colleagues from Ulleval University Hospital in Norway. They discovered that elderly men increasing their intake of vitamin C through fruits, berries and vegetables experienced less thickening of the carotid artery -- one of the main arteries that supplies blood to the heart and brain -- compared to those not increasing their vitamin C intake, the February 2009 issue of the journal "Nutrition, Metabolism and Cardiovascular Diseases" reports.
Magnesium found in oranges might improve bone health. Lead researcher Kathryn Ryder and colleagues investigated the relationship between magnesium consumption and bone mineral density. Subjects were asked to complete a questionnaire regarding their magnesium intake through foods and supplements. In addition, participants underwent a bone mineral density test. At the end of the study, which was published in the December 2005 issue of the "Journal of the American Geriatrics Society," scientists observed that subjects with a higher magnesium intake had significantly greater bone mineral density compared to those with a lower magnesium intake.
Oranges contain soluble fiber, which might curb appetite in women, according to lead researcher Barbara Schneeman and colleagues from the University of California. Subjects consumed one of the following breakfasts: low fiber, low fat; high fiber, low fat; or low fiber, high fat. Researchers measured the release of cholecystokinin, a hormone associated with satiety. Scientists discovered that women eating high fiber, low fat and low fiber, high fat breakfasts experienced increases in cholecystokinin, the November 2002 issue of the "American Journal of Clinical Nutrition" reports