The mandarin is one of the most consumed citrus fruits on the entire planet. They are one of the most desired fruits in the fall. In addition, it has very beneficial properties for our health, especially at this time of year.
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What is mandarin?
The mandarin is a citrus that comes from the mandarin. In addition, this fruit tree has very similar characteristics to the orange tree.
This citrus fruit is from the orange family , but smaller and flattened at the bottom. Also, it is easier to peel off your bright orange skin. Furthermore, the skin can be found smooth or rough, depending on the variety.
The mandarin is a citrus fruit that can be more or less large. In this way, it measures 4 or 5 cm in diameter and can reach up to 8 cm depending on the type.
Origin of the mandarin
Curiously, it is believed that the name of the mandarin comes from the orange suits of the bureaucrats of Imperial China , since it was orange.
Also, it is believed that the mandarin comes from China where there are historical records that place its origin in this country for thousands of years. The first documented record dates from the 12th century BC
Soon its cultivation spread throughout the East first and later throughout the rest of the planet.
Currently, the countries with the highest citrus production are America and Asia, with China being the country that leads its production , followed by Turkey, Morocco, and Europe.
In Spain, the most producing provinces are Valencia and Castellón with 63% of the national production.
Mandarins are divided into different varieties, similar to the orange varieties. In this way, they are mainly grouped into the following: Clementinas, Clemenvillas and Híbridos y Satsumas.
This variety is quite common. It is intense in color and the rind is grainy and fairly easy to peel. In addition, inside it contains a very juicy pulp and it usually contains seeds. The season is usually from November to January approximately.
They are very similar to clementines but larger.
They are common in our markets. It is a bit more reddish and the interior has a lot of juice. In addition, it is more difficult to peel. The season is usually from January to April. They are also divided into the fortune, ellendale and ortanique varieties.
We also usually find these mandarins in our markets. They are of Japanese origin and stand out for their yellowish color in a thick and rough crust.
In addition, we can find the following varieties and their seasons:
- Clemenrubi : season from September to October
- Oronul : season from October to November
- Loretina : season from October to December
- Clemenules : season from November to January
- Clementina Fina : season from November to January
- Clemenvilla Nova : season from December to February
- Hernandina : season from January to February
- Orri Nacional (it is only harvested in Spain and is one of the best valued): season from January to April.
- Nadorcott : season from January to April.
- Murcott : season from January to April.
How do you eat mandarins?
It is very easy to eat and is a good source of vitamins and minerals. To peel it, in most cases, you can only use your hands. Its pulp is divided into very juicy segments with juice inside.
The pulp has an acid flavor with a more or less intense sweetness. Likewise, the segments it contains may or may not have bones, depending on the variety.
The best way to consume it is raw and fresh. In this way we benefit from all its beneficial properties for our health. In addition, it is the best way to enjoy its flavor and its unmistakable aroma.
We usually eat it for breakfast, as a dessert or a snack. In addition, we can consume it as an ingredient in delicious recipes. Examples of these recipes can be mandarin juice, jam, jam, fruit salad or preserved in syrup.
It is also present in numerous recipes for elaborate dishes, salads, desserts such as cakes, creams or ice cream.
These foods are a source of vitamins that are very beneficial for our health. In addition, they have a good appearance for their color, with an attractive bark to the eye. Likewise, eating these types of fruits give us much more, a delicious aroma and a distinguished flavor.
The campaign begins between September and October (early autumn) and lasts until February. In this period of dates we can find the seasonal mandarin in our markets.
You can check the calendar of the fruit season to be able to consume these foods at their most optimal moment. In addition, when they are in season they provide us with more benefits for our health, they have a better aroma and are tastier , among other advantages.
The fundamental characteristic, like all citrus fruits, is its vitamin C content . However, in less quantity than orange. In addition, its fiber and water content is also remarkable.
On the other hand, these foods are rich in minerals such as calcium, potassium, magnesium and phosphorus . The content of folic acid and beta-carotene that it provides us is important.
Average nutritional value per 100 grams of mandarin
Likewise , its nutritional properties provide different benefits to our health. Therefore, it makes this fruit a very healthy delicacy.
Among all its benefits we can highlight the following:
1. Source of vitamin C
They are foods that provide us with a large amount of vitamins . Most of the health benefits of mandarins are probably related to their high vitamin C content.
2. Stimulates our natural defenses
Vitamin C helps us boost our natural defenses and stimulate our immune system. It protects us from colds and flu so common in the season of these fruits.
3. Helps us reduce bad cholesterol
There is a relationship between the consumption of mandarin and the reduction of cholesterol in our body.
There are several studies that have analyzed the effects of mandarin consumption. In particular, the consumption of mandarin juice has several beneficial factors for health.
One of these studies looked at people who drank two cups of orange juice a day for 12 months. It appears that these people had lower “bad” LDL cholesterol levels. Also, lower total cholesterol than those who did not drink tangerine juice.
4. Natural antioxidant
Vitamin C and provitamin A or beta-carotene are great antioxidants that help us fight free radicals, the oxidation of cells.
Additionally, vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that helps maintain connective tissues, including skin, blood vessels, and bones.
5. Natural diuretic
Eating this food that helps us reduce fluid retention, since it is a natural diuretic thanks to its large amount of water. It is good for debugging.
6. Beneficial for weight control
It is a food rich in natural fiber that helps us regulate intestinal transit, like plum fruit . Also, it is low in sugar and fat which is ideal for our weight loss diet. In addition, thanks to its large amount of water, it works as a natural satiating agent.
Consequently, whole mandarins like oranges are high in fiber and relatively low in calories.
Studies have shown that a diet rich in fiber can be beneficial for weight reduction, lowering the risk of heart disease and improving blood sugar levels.
Therefore, tangerines and oranges are an ideal choice for a balanced diet and weight reduction.
Tangerines contain more vitamin A than oranges. However, oranges are lower in calories and higher in vitamin C and fiber. Both are good sources of vitamins and minerals , such as thiamine, folate, and potassium.
It is evident that these foods are a great help for our health. In addition, they are ideal in times of colder, since it helps us to strengthen our natural defenses and our skin.
In addition, eating this fruit gives us benefits that make mandarins an essential food in autumn.
Finally, it is important to note that most of these studies exposed in this article looked at the effects of drinking tangerine juice . However, when eating oranges, you also benefit from fiber, which is lost during juicing.
My name is Ellie Lauderdale, MD and I am USA based professional Nutritionist .
I am a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and board certified specialist in sports dietetics who is trained in integrative medicine. I have worked with hundreds of clients, from those suffering with chronic disease to professional and olympian athletes. My goal is to help optimize you from the inside so that you can feel, perform, and look your best on the outside.