It’s obvious to most people who follow a healthy diet, that consuming fresh fruit is highly beneficial to one’s health. However, instead of discarding the peels of many of favorite fruits when we eat them, why not do what our ancestors did, and eat the peel as well. Many extraordinary health benefits can be gained by consuming the peels of certain fruits, and below, is just a sampling of their many health-boosting benefits. HOWEVER, do be sure to ONLY consume organic fruit and peels. No matter how much you rinse and scrub your store bought fruit, if its not organic, pesticide and herbicide residues will always remain, and are typically most concentrated in the peels of produce.
Protect Your Skin with Lemon Peel – Researchers have found that regularly drinking black tea can cut your risk of dangerous skin cancer by 40%. If that wasn’t amazing enough, the researchers discovered that adding lemon rinds ups that protection to a whopping 70%! Credit goes to a compound found in the peels of lemon called d-limonene, which has the ability to block the growth of skin cancer cells. And, as an added skin bonus, lemon peel’s astringent oils help reduce oily skin and clear up acne. To use, simply add some freshly grated organic lemon peel to tea, water, smoothies, and even salad dressings.
Improve Digestion with Kiwi Peel – If you enjoy kiwis, but avoid eating their fuzzy skin, you might want to reconsider. Not only is it safe to eat the skin of a kiwi, but because the skins are loaded with digestive-enhancing prebiotics, they are able to reduce, or even completely alleviate, common digestive woes such as gas, bloating, constipation and diarrhea. Additionally, the skin of kiwis contains three times more antioxidants than the inner green flesh, and is high in natural dietary fiber, helping to ensure smooth digestion and improve absorption of nutrients.
Boost Your Mood with Banana Peel – Many people don’t know that you can actually eat the peel of bananas. Studies have shown that eating one whole banana peel daily ups your body’s serotonin 20% in as little as three days. Banana peels are rich in tyrptophan, an essential amino acid, which the brain then uses to make serotonin, your body’s natural feel-good, natural antidepressant. To consume banana peels, you never eat them raw. Boil the banana skin in a pot of filtered water for 10-12 minutes. Remove, chop and then blend it into your favorite smoothie, or other healthy beverage.
Destroy Cancer Cells on Contact with Tangerine Peel – British researchers have isolated a compound found in the rind of tangerines called ‘salvestrol Q40’, that is so toxic to human cancer cells, it destroys them on contact, while avoiding damage to nearby healthy cells! In fact, cancer researchers theorize that the modern trend of throwing away peels, instead of eating them as our ancestors did, may play a role in the recent rise of certain cancers. To use, just fresh grate tangerine peels into your salads, slaw’s and stir fry’s, for a delicious flavor boost, not to mention extraordinary cancer protection.
Melt Stubborn Fat with Grapefruit Peel – Many people have heard of at least one of the various forms of the ‘grapefruit diet’ for weight loss. Not only has grapefruit been found to be an effective and safe fat burner, but now, researchers have found that most of the fruit’s fat burning benefits are located in the rind. Grapefruit’s rind contains the highest concentration of ‘naringenin’, a compound that turbocharges the liver to burn excess fat instead of storing it. To use, just freshly grate some grapefruit peel into drinks and smoothies, sprinkle onto salads and desserts, and even try adding the grated peel to your Asian and French inspired dishes.
Reduce Bad Cholesterol with Orange Peel – The rind of oranges is chock-full of compounds that are proven to help reduce levels of bad cholesterol (LDL) by as much as 40% within 1 month, and, without all the dangerous side effects that prescription cholesterol-lowering drugs often have. An additional surprise health benefit of orange peels, is that it helps smokers quit their habit, as well as reduce the dangerous health effects of smoking, by flushing nicotine out of the body.
Bon Veggie Appetit!
Gina ‘The Veggie Goddess’ Matthews