High Vibe Highlight: Citrus (w/ Recipe!)
When I think of spring foods, I think FRUIT. And when I think FRUIT, I think CITRUS. I think juicy, fresh, bright + nutritious. The citrus genus is a generous one. It provides us with a wide array of fruit to please all palates. Lemons, limes, grapefruit and the impressive variety of oranges that exists allows us to pick the perfect citrus fruit to fit our mood or our needs.
So you may have noticed the term “spring food” earlier. I want to talk about this for a minute since seasonal eating is one of my favourite food concepts and I think it’s really important to understand. Seasonal eating is a practice where you consume foods when they are "in season", or around the time that they are harvested. Not only is it good for local business, the economy and the environment, seasonal food is fresher, tastier and, most importantly, more nutritious than food consumed out of season.
When an orange, for example, is plucked from a tree, it immediately begins to lose nutrients. The more time progresses between picking and consumption, the more nutrients it loses. If your orange is spending days or weeks in shipping containers, on the backs of trucks or on the shelves of your supermarket, it actually contains very few nutrients once it’s eaten.
So, when you choose seasonal products, LOCAL products, not only are you doing yourself a favour in terms of nutrition, but you’re also most likely paying local people for local goods and helping the environment by not having your food shipped halfway across the country.
BENEFITS OF CITRUS
Alright, back to citrus and its numerous benefits.
We all know that citrus fruit are known for their high vitamin C content. A medium orange can actually supply you with 130% of your daily requirement. Other notable vitamins and minerals found in citrus are lycopene, folate, potassium, vitamin B6, magnesium, niacin, fiber, thiamin & phytonutrients. All of these together promote heart health, a strong immune system, young looking skin, stress reduction along with hydration and a better absorption of nutrients.
HOW + WHEN TO CONSUME CITRUS
Citrus is one of those foods that can’t be mixed with just any other food or eaten any time of day. Okay, fine, technically you CAN. There’s nothing stopping you. However, a lot of people will experience digestive upset if they’re too willy nilly with their citrus intake.
It’s best to consume citrus fruits first thing in the morning on an empty stomach. However, pairing citrus with other fruit or after a small meal can work well too. Mixing any kind of citrus with a full meal, especially with vegetables, has proven to be painful for many. That’s why I’ve kept my citrus recipe for you sweet and simple, pairing grapefruit with another fruit: avocado!
Grapefruit Avocado Salad
1 grapefruit, peeled + segmented + seeds removed
For citrus dressing:
2 tbsp lime juice
1 tsp lime zest
1/4 cup olive oil
1/8 tsp salt
1 tsp mint, fresh + chopped
In a small bowl or container, mix the dressing ingredients.
Peel and slice the avocados.
Arrange slices of avocados and grapefruit segments on a plate.
Top with desired amount of dressing.