Tangerines: beneficial properties, varieties and uses

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Elia Tabuenca García
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Mandarin is the only sweet fruit of the citrus family. Its wedges are small and juicy, with light orange pulp. The peel of the mandarins is thin and easy to remove, light orange in color and very fragrant. A mandarin tree, belonging to the Rutacae family, can give us up to 600 fruits per year and reach a height between two and four meters.



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Il tangerine It is the only sweet fruit of the degli family citrus fruits. Its wedges are small and juicy, with light orange pulp. The peel of the mandarins is thin and easy to remove, light orange in color and very fragrant. A mandarin tree, belonging to the Rutacae family, can give us up to 600 fruits per year and reach a height between two and four meters.



Beneficial properties of mandarins

Tangerines are rich in Vitamin C. It is good to consume tangerines as a seasonal fruit during the winter, so that their vitamin content can help protect us from ailments typical of the period, such as cold. The intake of mandarin pulp helps protect the mucous membranes and capillaries. Mandarin also contains vitamin A and B vitamins, along with magnesium, iron and folic acid.

It is a nutritious fruit, easily digestible and considered suitable in turn to promote digestion. Contains calcium, potassium and fiber, which are useful for the proper functioning of the intestine. It performs a function of regulating the blood pressure, promotes diuresis and may be able to counteract the water retention.

Scientific studies have attributed it to mandarins anticancer properties, especially with regard to the liver. It is therefore advisable to drink tangerine juice regularly, especially when the fruit is in season, or to consume the pulp. The consumption of mandarins has been linked to both a reduction in the risk of cancer of the digestive system, and of stroke risk. The seeds of the mandarin themselves, which can be chewed and ingested without problems, can help increase the vitamin intake from this fruit.

The consumption of tangerines also contributes to improve visual functions, lower the level of blood cholesterol and reinforce the immune system, especially in children. Tangerines are rich in antioxidants and perform a purifying function of the body. They strengthen it and protect it from infections and diseases. The consumption of mandarin juice is particularly recommended in case of asthma or bronchitis. As for the nutritional values of tangerines, 100 grams of these fruits provide 53 kilocalories, 0,800 grams of protein and 13,300 grams of carbohydrates.



Variety of tangerines

There are many variety of mandarins, among them are the following:

Chinese Mandarin: it is an Asian variety of mandarins, of which there are two species. The Nagami, which has small and oval-shaped fruits, and the Nerumi, with spherical fruits always of small size. The peculiarity of these fruits consists in their very thin and edible peel, which allows them to be eaten without peeling them.

Tangerine mandarin: derives its name from the port of Tangier, in Morocco, from which it was brought to Europe. Its peel is orange, tending to red, its shape is round and resembles that of an orange, but its dimensions are smaller.

Cleopatra mandarin: is a variety of mandarin coming from India. Its skin is not perfectly adherent to the pulp, its taste is very pleasant. It is a mandarin particularly rich in seeds and used for both food and ornamental purposes.

King mandarin: the king mandarin is one plant of Chinese origin, which can reach a height of more than four meters. Its fruits have a medium size, are very juicy and are wrapped in a thin skin. The king mandarin arrived in Europe at the end of the nineteenth century.

From mandarin they were born three hybrids well known: the mandarin (hybrid between mandarin and orange), le clementine (hybrid between tangerine and tangerine) and mapo (hybrid between a grapefruit and a mandarin).

Uses of tangerines

As far as the food uses, the mandarin is eaten mainly fresh, after being peeled and divided into wedges. It is excellent consumed alone or in the company of other fruit, in the making of a fruit salad. The tangerine can be squeezed to obtain an excellent one fresh fruit juice and rich in vitamins, to be added possibly to other ingredients for the preparation of a smoothie, or to be consumed simply alone.



Mandarin wedges can also be an addition in the preparation of dishes such as salads or in exotic vegetable side dishes. They are great gasket in the preparation of cakes, pies or pastries. Tangerine juice can also be used in the preparation of popsicles, natural jellies or slushes.

As far as the 'cosmetic field, a essential oil used for the preparation of products suitable for combating cellulite, for performing massages and for fighting water retention. The tangerine peel is also used for the preparation of oily macerates to be applied on the skin, especially to perform toning massages in the leg area, designed to favor the reabsorption of liquids and to counteract their stagnation.

Le peels of mandarins they can be dried and used for decorative purposes, or for the preparation of perfumed pot-pourri do-it-yourself, accompanied by dried flowers and dried peels of other citrus fruits. Mandarin essential oil is also used for stretch mark care of the skin. In aromatherapy it is used in order to promote a feeling of well-being, especially in case of stress. It has disinfectant, antibacterial properties and helps to relieve nervous tension. Mandarin essential oil can be purchased at a herbalist's shop, online, or in health food stores.

Marta Albè

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