Mandarins are sometimes called the younger brothers of oranges. However, the set of nutrients in these fruits is slightly different. Tangerines, like grapefruits and lemons, are a storehouse of vitamin C, they contain flavonoids that help fight weight gain, diabetes and atherosclerosis. And this is not all the healing properties of mandarins.
Tangerines are the common name for different varieties of citrus fruits. As a rule, they are sweeter than other "brothers" of the citrus family, have a pleasant warm orange color, are easily cleaned and supply extremely many useful substances. In our latitudes, mandarin is the main fruit of the winter holidays and a favorite treat for kids.
Mandarin belongs to the largest and most diverse group of citrus fruits. Their fruits vary in size and sweetness, some may contain a lot of seeds, others be completely without them. A tangerine tree is usually slightly smaller than an orange tree. Although this does not mean that it belongs to dwarf plants - an adult tree has a wide crown and can exceed 7 meters in height. These are spiky evergreens with thin branches and fragrant white flowers. During the first 5 years, the tree practically does not yield a crop, and reaches a fruiting peak by about 12 years.
The fruits of this citrus are much smaller than oranges, slightly flattened with a peel from bright orange to red-orange. In mature fruits, the peel is loose and easily detached from the lobules. Compared to oranges, these plants are more resistant to cold and tolerant of drought, however, ripe mandarin fruits are more tender, it is easier to damage them. But like all citrus fruits, tangerines provide the body with many vitamins and minerals, while they practically do not contain calories and fat. Today, there are many varieties of this plant, so scientists use a variety of classifications for it.
Mandarin, where are you from?
It is believed that the homeland of these sweet citrus fruits is northeast India. Biologists suggest that the first mandarin trees appeared 3000 years ago. From India, mandarin "migrated" to China, then to Europe, the countries of North Africa and Australia.
At the beginning of the XIX century, two varieties of wood came to England, then they spread throughout the Mediterranean countries, from there - to the American continent. Today, this plant is most common in Japan, southern China, India, East Indies, Australia, USA, Mexico. But still, the main supplier of these sweet fruits is China, where about half of the world's mandarin harvest is grown. Every year, the Chinese collect 25-30 million tons of these fruits.
Types of Tangerines
Tangerines of different varieties and species fall into our markets. One of the most popular is Clementine. These fruits are a hybrid of mandarin and bitter orange. They have a sweet-sour taste, a pleasant aroma, a small amount of seeds. These are the smallest members of the tangerine family.
A hybrid of mandarin and grapefruit, called tangelo, is easy to recognize by its very sweet taste with light bitterness and large size (the largest). Seedless tangerines, which also often appear on our shelves, are called Japanese, and fruits with a reddish tinge are representatives of the Tangor variety.
If you are looking for very sweet fruits, then you should choose among Moroccan or Israeli varieties. The fruits of the varieties Robinson, Clementine, Honey, Mineola, Dancy, and Temple also fit into this characteristic. If you want sour fruit, you need to look among Turkish, Chinese or Abkhazian "guests". We need tangerines that are easily peeled from the skin - Japanese, Spanish, Moroccan, Turkish and Abkhaz varieties are suitable.
Despite the sweet taste, tangerines contain almost no calories. More than 85% of these fruits are made up of water. For this reason, tangerines are on the list of fruits allowed for diabetics.
Mandarin is the richest source of vitamin A among citrus fruits.
For comparison: if 100 g of pomelo contains about 8 IU of this vitamin, in lemon - 22 IU, in oranges - 247 IU, then in tangerines this figure is 681 IU. And, as you know, the health of the eyes, skin, teeth and bones depends on this vitamin.
As for ascorbic acid, its reserves of 100 g of fruits will provide 38% of the daily intake of vitamin. This fruit also contains a certain amount of B vitamins and the main vitamin antioxidant - E. And the flavonoids that make up the citrus fruit are an effective tool for the prevention and treatment of obesity, type 2 diabetes, cardiac diseases. It is important to know that the main concentration of this substance is found in the peel of tangerines.
|Calorie content||53 kcal|
|Folic acid||16 mcg|
|Pantothenic acid||0.2 mg|
|Vitamin C||27 mg|
|Vitamin A||681 IU|
|Vitamin E||0.2 mg|
Benefit for health
Pleasant taste is far from the only positive quality of tangerines. This citrus has several health benefits: from losing weight to preventing cancer.
Studies have shown that mandarin can reduce the risk of developing liver cancer. Scientists say that all this is due to the rich content of carotenoids. Many doctors attribute tangerine juice to patients with hepatitis C. In addition, this fruit contains a high concentration of limonene, which has anti-cancer properties, and is particularly effective against breast cancer.
Vitamin C Source
This is probably the most famous fact about tangerines: they contain a lot of vitamin C (approximately 38 percent of the daily intake). Now let's look at this fact in more detail. So what are the benefits of ascorbic acid? This vitamin is one of the most important antioxidants for humans. He fights free radicals that cause cancer and increase the tendency to colds, viral diseases. That is, the antioxidants contained in tangerines are able to "disarm" free radicals and protect the body from the most terrible diseases.
Synephrine is one of the components of the chemical composition of mandarins. What is he famous for? Scientists say that synephrine inhibits the production of so-called bad cholesterol in the body, which causes atherosclerosis. On the other hand, hemicellulose and pectin - the insoluble fiber present in the fruit, prevents the absorption of cholesterol in the intestine.
Tangerines help lower blood pressure. And it's not a joke. Scientists say that thanks to a unique set of minerals and vitamins, this fruit really has the ability to regulate blood pressure. Mandarin diet promotes a smooth and even movement of blood through the vessels.
It may seem strange, but this sweet fruit is ideal for an obese diet. And all thanks to the substantial fiber content in citruses. Dietary fiber, getting into the stomach, fills it and for a long time supports a feeling of satiety, preventing overeating. In addition, doctors found that tangerines are able to control blood glucose levels. And this means that the body uses the consumed sugar as fuel, and does not put it off in the form of fat reserves.
In addition, the composition of mandarins contains organic acids (citric and malic). They accelerate the process of cleansing the body of toxins and toxins, improve digestion, accelerate metabolism. In combination, it also contributes to easy loss of excess weight.
The immune system
What are we usually going to visit sick friends with? Right, with oranges. And all because they contain a lot of vitamin C, which is necessary to strengthen immunity. The same vitamin is found in sufficiently large quantities in tangerines. But in addition to this, sweet citruses also have antimicrobial, antiviral, and antifungal properties. Mandarins also relieve spasms in the digestive system, soothe nerves, thereby preventing vomiting, which often occurs against a background of high body temperature. And in addition to what has already been said: tangerines cleanse the blood of toxins and decay products, which is also a big help for an organism weakened by a disease.
And again, you have to remember about ascorbic acid. This delicious vitamin is also good for the skin. Moreover, the beneficial effect will be felt both after eating fruit in food, and after using its pulp as a natural cosmetic product. Regular consumption of tangerine juice improves skin tone and color. Antioxidants protect the skin from the aggressive effects of ultraviolet rays, help the skin withstand the sun. Beauticians advise wiping the skin with the juice of this fruit to get rid of age spots and wrinkles. Also, tinctures from tangerine zest, which contains no less useful components than the pulp of fruit, are excellent as a cosmetic product. But dermatologists advise tangerine oil as a means to accelerate wound healing.
The antioxidant ability of citrus fruits perfectly affects the health of the hair. Tangerine juice added to the finished cosmetics will make the hair shiny and strong. Effective for healing dull and weakened hair mask of tangerine juice.
Mandarins, like all citrus fruits, quite often cause food allergies. Therefore, nutritionists are not advised to abuse the fruit to pregnant women. Excessive consumption of citrus fruits can adversely affect the health of the expectant mother, as well as harm the child. In addition, doctors strongly recommend washing the fruits before use, since most of them are chemically processed during transportation.
This sweet citrus is also prohibited for people with ulcers, gastritis and other diseases of the digestive organs, especially during the period of exacerbation.
In a children's diet, mandarin should be introduced slowly, starting with small doses (from a few drops of juice).
How to choose and store
Ripe and healthy fruits should be bright orange in color, without stains, mold and rot. To determine the ripeness level of citrus, just put it on the palm of your hand: the right fruit feels a little harder, as for its size. The heavier the fruit, the more juice it contains. On the contrary, you should not take very light and soft fruits. Another evidence of the quality of the fruit is its flavor. It should be fresh, intense and free of "chemical" impurities.
It is better to store tangerines in a cool place, avoiding direct sunlight. In the refrigerator, the shelf life of the fruit will last up to 2 weeks. And one more important point: tangerines do not accept high humidity. Therefore, it is strongly not recommended to store these fruits in unopened plastic bags. You can extend the “life” of fruits if you grease their skins with vegetable oil or wax, which work as natural preservatives.
Tangerines on the table
Tangerines are a healthy, high-nutrient dessert. Nutritionists recommend eating at least 1-2 fruits daily, and the chefs have come up with many recipes to make the tangerine season more diverse. Slices of these fruits are added to salads, desserts, such as jellies and puddings, and tangerine oil serves as a natural flavoring for baking, ice cream, creams, sweets.
Healthy dessert for kids.
Prepare 1 package of gelatin, 1 glass of boiling water, half a glass of cold water, 1 glass of tangerine juice, chopped pineapple, yogurt and whipped cream.
To prepare this delicacy, first dilute the gelatin in warm water. Then add cold water, tangerine juice and slices of pineapple. Mix everything, pour into a mold and let harden. Then whip the cream with yogurt and garnish with this airy mass of jelly.
Tangerines with meat
For this dish you will need 3 bell peppers and 1 carrot, cut into strips, as well as onions, chopped in half rings, which should be stewed in a small amount of vegetable oil. About half a kilogram of beef (cut into strips) marinate in a mixture of tangerine juice, a teaspoon of sugar, ground ginger and soy sauce. During this time, fry the zest of tangerines in a pan. When the oil absorbs the citrus aroma, remove the peel and instead pickle the pickled meat in a skillet. Add the stewed vegetables to the finished beef. Stew for another 5 minutes and can be served.
In addition to the juice of these sunny fruits, essential oils are actively used in cosmetology. Preparations with this component will help:
- narrow the pores;
- align skin texture;
- remove traces of scars and age spots;
- make the skin supple and toned;
- cure ulcers, inflammation, acne.
At home, mandarin essential oil can be used as a component of a face mask.
For aging skin, a mixture of oils from mandarin, rosehip, mango, avocado is suitable.
For oily - a combination of tangerine and peanut oils, to which add the extract of calendula and hypericum.
You can remove irritation from the skin with a mask of essential oils of primrose, walnut and mandarin.
Smooth wrinkles according to the strength of a mixture of tangerine, olive, peach and lavender oils.
In addition, the antiseptic properties of mandarin make oil from it an effective remedy against herpes and fungi. Also, a few drops of citrus substance are added to massage oils - thus, a preparation is obtained from cellulite and stretch marks. And only 3 drops of tangerine oil added to the shampoo will help cure split ends and prevent hair loss.
Meanwhile, it is worth knowing that it is impossible to apply tangerine products to the skin before a visit to the solarium or going to the beach. Also, citrus essential oil is contraindicated in pregnant women, people with allergies and hypotension.
Tangerines are an important ingredient of the Chinese New Year. This fruit in China symbolizes good luck and long life. Because of its bright color, it is used in festive ceremonies, where citrus symbolizes the sun and the beginning of the new year. During the two-week celebration, the Chinese present these fruits to each other as gifts.
This sunny fruit is unique. It gives a good mood, strengthens the immune system, improves the condition of the skin and hair ... In general, tangerines work real miracles, and in many diseases they are more effective than certain medications.