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by inKin
18 Sep

The Best Super Foods from A-Z: L Is For Lemon

It happened to be the ancient Egyptians who discovered how to make lemonade. This drink was a luxurious beverage that only the pharaoh and the royal family were allowed to imbibe. Since then, it’s become something we’ve all enjoyed for centuries.

But drinks aren’t the only thing lemons are good for; they’re used to add a pleasant tart to a number of dishes and desserts. It’s something you can find in nearly any fridge, and that’s not just because they’re tasty. Lemons are incredibly good for you and can help prevent and treat a variety of health problems.

 

The Benefits of Lemons

This citrus fruit is a fantastic source of vitamin C and fiber. Additionally, lemons contain plant compounds, minerals, and are excellent as an essential oil. The potential health benefits of this hybrid (citron and lime) include:

 

1. Lowering Risk of Heart Disease

Lemons are a powerful antioxidant. A lemon provides approximately 21 per cent of a person's daily value (DV). The fiber and plant compounds, also called flavonoids, in lemon could also lower some risk factors for heart disease.

 

2. May Decrease the Risk of Cancer Growth

Studies are in progress to learn how and why the lemons and other citrus fruit may have cancer-fighting properties. The modified citrus pectin (MCP) and the limonoids in lemons have shown in animal testing to make it difficult for cancer cells to break off and spread.

 

3. Lessening the Possibility of Kidney Stones

Lemons contain citrate, a chemical that can prevent calcium stones from forming. Citrate can also break up small stones and allow them to pass through the urinary system.

 

4. May Lower Blood Sugar Levels

Individuals who get adequate amounts of vitamin C seem to have less risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Chinese scientists found that those who took at least 140 milligrams of vitamin C daily had less than a 5 per cent chance of developing diabetes.

 

5. Promotes Skin Health, Safe Blood Pressure, Energy, and May Prevent Anemia

  • Vitamin C — An essential vitamin, as well as an antioxidant. Vitamin C aids the immune system and provides properties that promote skin health.
  • Potassium — This mineral can help with lowering blood pressure levels and has found to have positive effects on heart function.
  • Vitamin B6 — This group of vitamins assists in the body's conversion of food into energy.
  • Small amounts of iron in lemons may help prevent anaemia or iron deficiency in premenopausal women.

 

Green Beans With Preserved Lemon

This recipe makes for an excellent addition to your Thanksgiving celebration.
 

Ingredients: 

  • Ice
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 pounds haricots verts or thin green beans, trimmed
  • Fresh ground black pepper
  • Two tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • Two tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Two tablespoons preserved lemon peel.
     

Instructions:

  • Fill a large bowl with ice water.
  • Blanch the haricots verts, which are a bright green bean of a variety with small white seeds. Blanch until the beans become crisp-tender and a deeper green. Let the beans drain well, then transfer them to the ice water, so they cool. Drain the green beans and dry them with a paper towel.
  • Whisk the preserved lemon peel.
  • In a small bowl, whisk the lemon peel with olive oil and lemon juice. Season the dressing with a bit of salt and pepper.
  • Toss the haricots verts.
  • Place the haricots in a bowl and toss them with the dressing. Season with salt and pepper and give the beans another toss. Serve the beans at room temperature or chilled.
  • Preserved lemons can be purchased at most grocery stores or online, or learn how to make your preserved lemons using the recipe here.
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