By Geoff Lecovin

This time of year many of us look to add a squeeze of lime to beverages and meals. See how this sour green fruit benefits health and some recipes that will add a tasty little tang on to your palate.

Nutrition in a Lime

 

Limes are a round green hybrid citrus fruit that are about 1–2.5 inches in diameter. They contain acidic juice vesicles which are an excellent source of vitamin C and phytonutrients. Limes are typically used to accent the flavors of foods and beverages.

One teaspoon of lime zest (approximately 1 gram) contains 1 calorie and 4% of recommended vitamin C.

 

 

Want to learn more about nutrition? Check out the NASM Fitness Nutrition Specialization

Health Benefits

Citrus fruits including oranges, tangerines, lemons, limes and grapes contain bioactive compounds, such as alkaloids, flavonoids, phenols and tannins.

In addition, these citrus fruits are good sources of water-soluble vitamins, such as: ascorbic acid, riboflavin, thiamin and niacin.

These phytonutrients and vitamins contribute to the antioxidant, anticancer and anti-inflammatory properties of the citrus species.

Because of their nutrients, during the 19th century, British sailors were issued citrus fruits, such as limes, in order to prevent scurvy. They later acquired the nickname, “Limey” because of their usage of limes.

How to Incorporate Lime Into Your Diet

  • Top fish with thinly sliced limes
  • Combine lime juice with olive oil, salt and fresh herbs as a seasoning or dressing
  • Squeeze lime juice into water or tea
  • Top entrees with lime zest or use zest in marinades
  • several sprigs of fresh mint

Recipes

Dr. Geoff’s Sangria

Instructions: Mix

  • 1 bottle Red Wine (e.g. Rioja)
  • 2 ounces Tequila (Silver)
  • 2 bottles GT’s Ginger Kombucha
  • 3 oranges (sliced in quarters, squeeze in juice and then put entire piece in the mixture)
  • 2 limes (sliced in quarters, squeeze in juice and then put entire piece in the mixture)
  • 1 cup blackberries

Number of Servings: Just depends on your audience.

Limes in cookingGuacamole

  • 2 large avocados
  • 2 limes
  • 1 clove garlic
  • salt
  • paprika

Instructions: Mash avocados, squeeze in limes, press and add garlic. Mix together until creamy and then salt to taste. Garnish with paprika sprinkled on top.

Number of servings: 4-6

Homemade Corn Tortilla chips

  • 2 packs of non-GMO, stone-ground corn tortillas
  • 2 limes
  • 2-3 tbsp avocado oil
  • salt
  • chili powder

Instructions:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Slice tortillas into chip size pieces. Place pieces into large bowl. Toss with avocado oil and squeeze in lime juice. Toss until pieces are moist. Spread pieces onto two large baking trays. Lightly sprinkle salt and chili powder onto chips and then flip the chips and sprinkle salt and chili powder onto the other side. Bake until golden and crispy (about 10 minutes). Keep checking to avoid burning. Allow to cool slightly so they become crispy.

Number of servings: 4


References

https://www.britannica.com/plant/lime

Okwu, D. E., & Emenike, I. N. (2006). Evaluation of the phytonutrients and vitamin contents of citrus fruits. Int. J. Mol. Med. Adv. Sci, 2(1), 1-6.

USDA Food Composition Databases, https://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/