There are many of us who are lemon fans, and we tell you why.
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Lemons are citrus fruits which have many health benefits. There are two features that characterize them: difference and versatility. Unlike other citrus fruits, these sour fruits can be consumed in other foods, and, regarding their versatility, lemons can be used not only for cooking but also for health-related purposes or even for removing a stain from our clothes.
Lemons are mainly used as condiments or diluted, thus, unlike other citrus fruits, their per capita consumption is smaller. According to information from the Argentine Citrus Federation¹, dated July 2021, Argentine people consume 3 kilos of lemons per capita every year, a number that is higher than the European average consumption, which is about 1.96 kilos per capita every year, according to Eurostat²
The benefits of these citrus fruits are increasingly popular. When it comes to cooking, they are known as “multipurpose keys” because they can be used in any recipe and in different types of food (jellies, puddings, jams, pastries, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, etc.) as well as in the manufacturing of cosmetic, pharmaceutical and cleaning products.
Lemons are also authentic nutritional treasures³.
Since lemons have fewer calories than other fruits, they are a source of vegetable compounds called flavonoids, which have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. Antioxidants are compounds that help protect body cells from damage and have a very low glycemic index (30) as well as large amounts of fiber. Moreover, their sour flavor helps digestion and kidney stones dissolution.
In addition, studies have shown that people who consume a large amount of vitamin C have a lower risk of developing chronic conditions such as cardiovascular or neurodegenerative diseases or cataracts, according to the Spanish Lemon and Grapefruit Interbranch Organization (Ailimpo). Their pulp contains organic acids, mainly citric acid and, secondly, malic (considered to be responsible for the sour flavor in this fruit), acetic and formic acids. Some studies have shown that organic acids boost the action of vitamin C and have a significant antiseptic effect. Lemons also have phenols such as caffeic and ferulic acids, which are strong antioxidants and inhibit carcinogenic activity.
On September 30, we celebrate the World Lemon Day, a date that was set to give value to the global chain of this citrus fruit.
By Osvaldo Gross, an Argentine pastry chef, world renowned for his dishes. He has written many books and is a TV presenter. He has also received many awards, such as Cordon Bleu, The Culinary Institute of America, École Etoile, Castalimenti.
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