Lemon (lat. Citrus limon) is a plant of the genus Citrus, subtribe Citreae of the Rutaceae family and the fruits of this plant.
The history of the appearance of lemon in nutrition
The evergreen lemon tree produces fragrant fruits – lemons. They appeared as a result of crossing citron and bitter orange. At the moment, wild lemons are unknown. The word is borrowed from the Italian “Limone”, and the Italians took the Persian word, which the latter meant any citrus.
This plant is native to China, India, and the tropical islands of the Pacific Ocean. Lemons were brought from Pakistan and India to Spain, Italy, and the Middle East. The tree seedlings came to Russia in the 17th century. Then it was a rarity, and for the sake of lemon trees they created the position of “keeper of lemons”.
Now the leaders in the cultivation of this fruit are Mexico and India. A total of 14 tons of lemons are harvested annually, which grow in subtropical countries.
The main exporters of these citrus fruits are the following countries:
- The USA;
Lemons are famous and especially appreciated by gourmets, French lemons from Menton, where a whole festival is dedicated to them, and Italian lemons from the Amalfi Coast, from Sorrento. Several monuments to lemon have been erected: the largest in California reaches 3 meters. In the Nizhny Novgorod region, the sculptural composition is dedicated to Pavlovsk lemon, which is one of the symbols of the city. In the 20th century, the Pavlovsk Lemonarium operated there, growing lemons on an industrial scale.
It contains substances important and useful for the human body, for which it is valued, in addition to its taste and aroma. Among them are vitamins, minerals, there are calories in it, albeit in small quantities.
Calorie content of lemon
The fruit contains 34 kcal / 100 g of product.
The nutritional value
The fruit contains the following substances in 100 g:
- Fat – 0.1 g;
- Proteins – 0.9 g;
- Carbohydrates – 3 g;
- Pectin – 0.5 g;
- Fiber (dietary fiber) – 1.3 g;
- Ash – 0.5 g;
- Organic acids – 5.7 g;
- Water – 88 g.
The fruit is their real treasure because it contains:
Contained in culture and many useful elements, including such macronutrients
The trace elements in its composition are as follows:
There are about 150 of them, and the most popular of them are:
- Villafranca. Representatives of this variety have an oblong-oval shape, a short blunt nipple, fragrant, tender, juicy pulp with a fine-grained structure. The peel of the fruit is of medium thickness, dense and smooth. The culture has a spreading crown, characterized by dense foliage, and it begins to bear fruit in the 3rd year of life;
- Genoa. The fruits have an oblong-oval shape, a sharp nipple, juicy, tender pulp of yellow color with a grayish tint. They have a yellow or greenish peel with a sweetish taste and roughness;
- Novogruzinsky. The height of the tree on which the elongated-oval fruits grow, with a wide blunt nipple, is about 2 m. It has a spreading crown, and it bears fruit 4-5 times/year. The skin of the fruit is of medium thickness, smooth and shiny. Their pulp is characterized by a pronounced pleasant smell, the presence of a gentle sourness;
- Commune. Native to Italy, this variety is known for its medium tree height and small thorns. But the fruits themselves are more interesting – oval, large in size, and the seeds in their juicy, sour, but tender pulp are absent. They have a skin of medium thickness, bumpy;
- Drummer. This variety is characterized by an average tree height, a crown with abundant foliage. Fruits are oval, large in size, wide nipple. Their flesh is tender, albeit very sour, and the yellow skin is rough;
- Tashkent. On a stunted tree, a large number of medium-sized fruits are formed, the pulp of which is orange in color, and their peel is thin. The culture bears fruit 2 times a year. The peculiarity of the plant is that it can be overloaded with crops;
- Anniversary. The tree is short, and it begins to bear fruit in the 2nd year of life. They are characterized by an oblong shape, dense and thick skin, and are large. Their pulp is tender, sour, with a pronounced aroma;
- World. Representatives of the variety are thin, round, and large in size. They grow on tall, spreading trees that do not have thorns. The flesh has a rich yellow color, as well as the peel of the fruit.
Lemon is a crop that is often used for breeding, thanks to which other, unusual varieties have been bred:
- Rosso. He is a hybrid with citron, has a yellow-red skin and rich color pulp;
- Bizzaro. Representatives of this variety have a juicy, delicate pulp, thick skin with outgrowths located longitudinally on it, and they have a teardrop shape;
- Eureka is variegated. Fruits have a striped yellow-red color as they begin to ripen. Over time, it turns pink, as does the color of the fruit pulp;
- Arcobal. The cultivar is the result of a selection of citrus fruits with Bloody Orange. When the fruit is fully ripe, the skin turns orange, diluted with bright red stripes. The taste of the pulp is sweet and sour, and it inherited its smell from an orange;
- Sanguineum. This fruit is large in size with a reddish flesh. When they begin to ripen, their rind is amber green, and then it turns coral yellow;
- Limandarin. The cultivar is a mixture of mandarin and lemon. It has an orange peel and a sour taste.
The benefits of lemon
It is huge and undeniable, and both the pulp and the peel of the fruit have a beneficial effect on the human body. Lemon has the following beneficial properties:
- Culture is an excellent helper in the treatment of colds, their prevention, and this is its most common property. Everyone knows that even doctors recommend taking tea with this citrus for these purposes;
- Thanks to this plant, immunity is strengthened, and in many ways, it owes its ability to the abundance of vitamin C in its composition;
- The fruits are able to actively and successfully fight infections, have an anti-inflammatory effect. Because of this, lemons, the benefits of which are undeniable, have found application in the treatment of angina in the early stages of the disease. This is also possible due to the fact that essential oils are present in abundant quantities;
- This culture is a storehouse of potassium, iron, as a result of which, thanks to it, the production of red blood cells improves, and the blood vessels and their walls are strengthened. It helps to normalize the work of the heart muscle, blood pressure;
- The benefit of lemon lies in the fact that it has an antioxidant effect. The content of ascorbic acid in it in abundant quantities allows it to cleanse the body of free radicals, preventing the development of oncological diseases;
- Fruits have a beneficial effect on the gastrointestinal tract, improving peristalsis, removing toxins and other harmful substances from the body;
- Its use in food helps to compensate for the expended energy, to give the body the necessary useful elements;
- Thanks to him, he is freed from unhealthy cholesterol;
- The fruit is considered an excellent antidepressant.
How is lemon useful for a strong half of humanity? Many of them:
Fruit juice helps to improve the quality of sperm, increase the rate of sperm. Because of this, the chances of conceiving a child are significantly increased;
The fruit also helps to normalize hormones, stimulating the production of testosterone, which is the prevention of infertility;
Its beneficial properties extend to male potency, which increases due to the content of an abundant amount of ascorbic acid.
The benefits of the fruit for them are as follows:
The culture contains a huge amount of active substances that contribute to the health and beauty of hair, skin;
Lemon has low-calorie content, and the substances in its composition improve the digestive processes. Thanks to these factors, many women use it when fighting extra pounds;
Being a natural antioxidant and removing harmful substances, toxins, free radicals from the body, citrus fruits slow down the aging process;
They are actively used in cosmetology, having the ability to remove acne, acne, and give the skin elasticity, firmness;
Owners of a light tone of hair use the fruits to wash their hair so that the color of the strands becomes more saturated and shiny.
Juice, lemon peel is also used for a children’s diet, but not earlier than from the age of 2 years of age. If he is prone to citrus allergies, he should try to give him the fruit at least 5 years old.
And the beneficial properties of the fruit for the child’s body are as follows:
- It helps to increase immunity, which is very important at this age;
- Fruits prevent metabolic disorders;
- Thanks to them, the child’s cardiovascular system develops correctly;
- Given the antibacterial, anti-inflammatory effect of culture, it protects the child’s body from pharyngitis, adenoiditis, tonsillitis;
- The useful substances contained in the plant not only saturate it, giving energy and resources for the proper development of all organs and systems.
Harm and contraindications of lemon
Like all citrus fruits, this fruit can also have a negative effect on the body. Its harm may be as follows:
- The acids that make up the fruit can have a negative effect on tooth enamel;
- They can also negatively affect if a person has gastrointestinal diseases accompanied by high acidity;
- The fruits are known as an excellent helper in the elimination of inflammatory processes, diseases of an infectious nature. But they will be useful in such cases only in the early stages of treatment. When a pathological process is gaining momentum, culture can aggravate it;
- The fruit is a powerful allergen, often acting as a product to which the individual intolerance of the body manifests itself.
Thus, contraindications to its use are as follows:
- The presence of problems with tooth enamel, cracks on it. Even if such troubles have passed you, you need to rinse your mouth after consuming this citrus;
- Diseases of the stomach of an inflammatory nature, associated with its increased acidity (gastritis, ulcers, pancreatitis);
- Inflammatory processes occurring in an acute form;
- Child’s age up to 2 years. If he is allergic to something, for the first time, fruit should be introduced into his menu no earlier than he reaches 5 years of age.
The benefits of lemon peel
This part of the fruit is often used in cooking. It has a pronounced taste, aroma, contains essential oils, so it comes in handy in many dishes. Lemon peel is the outer layer of the fruit’s rind and is yellow in color.
Its useful properties are as follows:
- Increased immunity;
- Antimicrobial, antifungal, and disinfecting effects;
- Prevention of aging processes;
- Lemons are also used for weight loss for the reason that the pectins included in the zest help break down fats;
- This part of the fruit normalizes the work of the heart, helps to strengthen blood vessels, improve blood circulation;
- Thanks to it, the liver is cleansed, toxins and toxins are removed from the body.
How to choose a lemon?
To get a good quality fruit with a full range of nutrients and properties, follow the recommendations as follows:
- Pay attention to the rind. It is not necessary that it have a pronounced yellow color – a greenish tint may be present in it. It is important that it has a shine as if it were polished. It indicates the freshness of the product;
- Continuing to study the skin, evaluate whether it is bumpy or smooth. It is believed that fruits taken from the first harvest are smoother and thinner, and they contain the maximum amount of useful components. In addition, the thick, uneven skin weighs a lot and the white layer between the pulp and rind is tasteless;
- If you find sunken brown spots on the fruit, chances are, this is a once frozen lemon that has been thawed. Such a product acquires bitterness, which is by no means to everyone’s taste, although some gourmets like to add it exactly in this form to various dishes and drinks;
- On the surface of the skin, there should be no dark spots, signs of mold, rot. You should not assume that such areas can be simply cut off – pathogenic microorganisms could already have spread to the rest of the fruit, but visually this may not be visible yet;
- The fruits should not be soft;
- Attach a napkin to the selected copy – if it has not been treated with chemicals, traces of essential oils will remain on it;
- A quality fruit should smell. Otherwise, it was grown using copious amounts of chemicals.
How to store lemon?
This should be done by choosing a cool, dark room, and it is better to use the refrigerator – its lower compartment. You can send the fruit to the freezer, but its taste will change from this, getting a bitterness.
At room temperature, it will quickly disappear, and in order to avoid the loss of most of its nutrients, including vitamin C, it should not be stored by mixing it with sugar.
Lemon in cosmetology
Its juice, zest, pulp are added to ready-made skin and hair care products. Compositions that you can prepare yourself at home will be no less effective.
For example, thanks to the sour fruit, you can give your face freshness, radiance, and a healthy look:
- Combine 1/2 fruit juice with honey in the amount of 4 tbsp. l .;
- Warm up the composition, apply to the skin of the face;
- After 5-7 minutes. wash it off with warm water.
To combat wrinkles, the following home remedy is used:
- Combine 150 ml of high-fat cream and 200 ml of milk;
- Heat the composition, but it should not boil;
- Place 1/2 citrus in it, after cutting it into slices, let the ingredients steep for several hours;
- Apply the resulting product for a third of an hour daily in the morning and evening, then rinse it off with warm water. You will soon be delighted with the result.
- Regular rubbing of the skin of the face with 1/2 citrus pulp will help eliminate age spots and acne.
If you want to get rid of dandruff with it, use this composition:
- Combine equal amounts of olive oil, citrus juice, grated ginger root, water;
- Use this mixture to rub into the scalp;
- When it dries, use warm water to rinse it off;
- After a few of these procedures, you will see that dandruff has receded.
Lemon in cooking
Lemon salad dressing
Sour spicy dressing for vegetables and even citrus salads. Store the dressing in the refrigerator.
Vegetable oil – 125 ml
Sugar – 10 gr
Lemon (juice) – 1 pc
Ground black pepper – to taste
Salt – 15 gr
Mustard – on the tip of a knife
Squeeze the juice from the lemon and remove the seeds. Mix the juice with all the ingredients – you can do it in a bottle.
In the same dressing, you can marinate fish or chicken.
Ginger with lemon and honey: recipe
The most popular natural remedy for colds, after raspberry tea, is a mixture of lemon with ginger and honey, which is diluted with hot boiled water and drunk.
0.5 l honey
0.5 kg lemons
100 g ginger
Wash the lemons thoroughly, pour over with boiling water and cut with the peel. Peel and cut the ginger into pieces. Pass the lemon and ginger through a meat grinder or chop with a submersible blender, add honey to the mixture, mix. Keep refrigerated. Eat a bite with tea or dilute in warm tea.
Lemon water: benefits and recipe
Drinking lemon water for healthy lifestyle fans has become a non-discussed norm. It is believed to help alkalize the body, promote rejuvenation and overall wellness, and promote weight loss. The effect of lemon on weight loss and the amount of lemon necessary to strengthen the immune system was mentioned above. Rejuvenating the body, improving well-being, and losing weight can also be attributed to the positive effects of hydration of the body, apart from the connection with lemon. There have been no scientific studies on the effects of lemon water on the human body.
This custard sweet and sour cream is suitable as a layer of cakes, added to cakes and eclairs. It can also be eaten as an independent dessert. The cream is stored for up to 2 weeks in the refrigerator.
Lemons – 3 pieces
Eggs – 4 pieces
Sugar – 80 g
Butter – 60 g
Wash two lemons and remove the zest with a fine grater, without touching the white layer. Stir the zest with sugar.
Squeeze juice from all lemons, add to the zest. Separate the yolks from the eggs – no whites are needed. Mix with juice and leave for a few minutes.
In a saucepan with a thick bottom, heat the cream over low heat, stirring constantly. This will take about 10 minutes. Then you need to strain the cream through a sieve to remove the zest.
Add the diced butter to the still-hot mixture, mix. After cooling, pour into sterilized jars.