It is taken as a given that orange juice is good for you. But many people don't realize how good for you it is. Here are five ways that an 8-ounce serving of orange juice each day benefits your body:
Nutrition: Orange juice is practically synonymous with vitamin C. But did you know that a serving of orange juice has about an entire day's worth? Orange juice is also a good source of vitamin A, thiamin, and folate, with 10%, 15%, and 19% of your daily values, respectively. And it is an excellent source of potassium, with 14% of your daily value for this mineral.
Cancer Prevention: Orange juice is chock-full of antioxidants, which are thought to help prevent cancer. The antioxidants in orange juice include vitamins C and A as well as a chemical called hesperidin, which may have a protective effect against colon cancer.
Helps with Blood Pressure: The antioxidant hesperidin is said to improve the health of the small blood vessels in your body, which can help regulate or reduce high blood pressure. Orange juice contains potassium, which also reduces the risk of high blood pressure. Keeping blood pressure within normal levels reduces the strain on your heart and reduces your risk of heart attack and stroke.
Reduces Inflammation: Low-level inflammation is believed to be a risk factor for developing insulin resistance, a major cause of type-2 diabetes. All citrus fruits and their juices have anti-inflammatory properties.
Helps Cholesterol Balance: Orange juice has been shown to reduce levels of low-density lipoproteins, the "bad" cholesterol. Keeping levels of bad cholesterol low helps prevent plaque build-up in your arteries and helps prevent heart attacks and strokes.
These are all wonderful reasons to enjoy a glass of orange juice regularly, but too much of a good thing can be, well, just too much. Orange juice has about 110 calories in an 8-ounce serving. Almost all these calories are from sugars, which means that orange juice has a high glycemic load and can cause fluctuations in your blood glucose levels if you drink a lot. But for most people, one glass a day is good and good for you.