Having a freshly squeezed glass of orange juice every day may help reduce inflammation and oxidative stress, claims a new study. Published in the Journal Advances in Nutrition, the findings, though limited in scope, indicate that drinking 100 per cent orange juice significantly reduces interleukin 6, a marker of inflammation, in both healthy and high-risk adults, along with two additional inflammatory and oxidative stress markers.
However, the results do not have statistical significance, suggesting that more analysis and larger studies are needed to reach conclusive evidence. The study also stressed that vitamin C and bioactive compounds in oranges play an important role in helping improve one’s health.
Notably, chronic inflammation, referred to as slow, long-term inflammatory response by one’s immune system as per National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), can cause chronic lifestyle diseases like that of the heart, diabetes, and more.
Another NCBI 2015-study investigated the effects of red-orange juice consumption on risk factors for metabolic syndrome. It noted how orange juice consumption can promote lower levels of oxidative stress and inflammation due to the antioxidant activity of citrus flavonoids and carotenoids. In addition, red-fleshed sweet orange juice (red orange juice) also contains lycopene. The study published in the International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition also observed how insulin resistance and systolic blood pressure were reduced in normal-weight volunteers after consuming orange juice every day for eight weeks, while diastolic blood pressure decreased in overweight volunteers after the intervention.
To understand if consuming a glass of orange juice every day can help, we reached out to experts.
Sakina Diwan, dietician, Bhatia Hospital explained how orange juice can help. “Orange juice consists of anti-inflammatory agents and compounds like flavonoids, hesperidin, and naringenin which helps in the proper functioning of the body and its organs. The juice is said to mediate the response in cell’s plasma and genes thus modulating inflammation in individuals,” she told indianexpress.com.
According to Diwan, here are some benefits of orange juice
*Orange juice is an excellent source of vitamin C: 1 cup contains twice the daily recommended value. Vitamin C supports your immune system and may be effective in fighting against several infections.
*It also contains folate that is found to support fetal development.
*Orange juice contains high levels of potassium citrate. The nutrient binds to calcium in urine, creating an environment where kidney stones are less likely to develop.
Dr Navneet Kaur, general physician, Apollo Spectra Nehru Enclave, Delhi said orange juice is rich in fibre and improves digestive health. “Since it is high in fibre, it also lowers cholesterol levels. It is jam-packed with Vitamin B9 and folate, promotes blood circulation and purification by helping in the production of red blood cells. Thus, it can manage blood pressure and improve the inner lining of blood vessels. The calcium and potassium present in oranges can help in the prevention of kidney stones,” Dr Kaur mentioned.
While the juice has a sweet taste, it is low in glycaemic index and fat content, said Kaur. “It is a good option if you want to battle the bulge. The vitamins C and E content in the juice can regenerate skin cells. This helps minimise the appearance of blackheads and spots. The vitamin A in it can keep your vision intact,” Dr Kaur stated.
How should it be consumed?
Diwan recommends “high pulp orange juice that has more fibre”. “You can even find orange juice that has been fortified with calcium and vitamin D, which does not naturally occur in orange juice,” she said.
While it is beneficial, experts recommend just one glass of orange juice per day. “In the case of children, it will be one small glass of juice in a day. Try to have the juice in the first half of the day, or make it a part of your breakfast,” said Dr Kaur.