Thursday, April 8, 2010

Candied peel good for you?

C-limonene has been shown to prevent develop and cause regression of chemically induced cancers. Therefore maximizing your consumption of this would be a very good idea. Limonene is found in many fruits and vegetables and as its name suggests it is found in citrus.

Lemons and lime juice was made from lemons purchased at the supermarket. There average limonene level was 83 and 65 mg/L respectively. However commercial juices purchased had much lower levels of lionene with some having none. Juice was made by blending up whole lemons and limes, adding water then straining to obtain a juice. The lemonade made this way had an average level of 1027 mg/L and limeade had levels of 402 mg/L.

We can conclude from this, that (a) commercially prepared citrus drinks have lower level of limonene than fresh juices. Secondly that limonene is found at much higher levels in citrus peel. This is because it is found in the oils in the citrus peel.

I made candied grapefruit peel before Christmas. This was driven by (a) never had made candied product before and (b) had a whole heap of grapefruit skins as I had made a grapefruit salad which used up a lot of grapefruit. I froze the majority of  the peel as I didn't have a use for it! Make me wonder if the limonene remaining in this peel (if there is any) out ways the negative impact of the high sugar level.

Next time I squeeze citrus fruit for a sauce I will finely grate the rind (not the white stuff!!) and include it the sauce adding significantly higher limonene levels. 
Reference: Hakim et al Assessing Dietary D-Limonene. Journal of food composition and analysis vol 13 pg 329 2000.
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