Blood Oranges: Your Vitamin C Secret Weapon

red blood orangesWe’re all familiar with sweet oranges like the Valencia and Navel. But there’s another sweet orange you should know—the blood orange (also called the red orange). While the name “blood orange” may not sound appealing, once tasted you’re likely to fall in love with this nutrient powerhouse.

Blood oranges have a reddish orange outer peel and red color flesh. The red color comes from anthocyanins, the same compound that makes blackberries blue and red cabbage red. Anthocyanins are not only pigments but powerful antioxidants with many health benefits.

Numerous studies have shown an association between anthocyanins’ high antioxidant activity and a decreased risk of chronic diseases such as cancer, heart disease and type 2 diabetes. A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that individuals who consumed more than two servings of anthocyanin-rich fruit per week had a lower risk of type 2 diabetes.

In addition to it’s high anthocyanin content, blood oranges are low in calories which may help prevent obesity, a major risk factor for type 2 diabetes.

At just 70 calories per fruit, blood oranges are an excellent source of vitamin C, and a good source of… fiber and potassium.