It is thought that limes were first grown in Indonesia or Southeast Asia, and were taken to the Mediterranean area around 1000 CE.
Back in the 19th century, British sailors were given limes daily to prevent scurvy. The nickname “Limey” has stuck with the Navy to this present day.
Today, limes are grown in India, Mexico, China, Argentina, Brazil, USA, Italy, Spain, Turkey and several other countries
What Is a Lime?
Limes are a citrus fruit with quite a bitter taste.
Small, round in shape and deep green in color, limes can be grown all year round and are an excellent source of vitamin C.
You will find many different varieties of lime depending on the region of the world in which you look. The most common for commercial production are the Persian and the Key lime.
Limes aren’t just about pies and cocktails. A staple ingredient in many countries, India, Thailand, Vietnam and Mexico use limes for their traditional dishes.
Limes are also very popular in the cosmetic industry. Many perfumes, and skin care products contain the fragrant oil extracted from the peel.
Limes are 88% water and also include an impressive list of nutrients. Vitamins in limes are A, E, K, the B vitamin complex. Limes have an extremely high content of vitamin C.
Minerals present are calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, copper, and selenium. To top it off, limes are low in saturated fat, sodium and cholesterol and are a high source of fiber.
Plant based antioxidants are extremely beneficial for health. Limes contain polyphenols, limonoids and flavonoids.
When you look at this extensive list, limes may be small in size but they really do pack in some huge health benefits.
Lime Juice Benefits for Health
Lime Juice Fights Bacteria
Evidence suggests lime juice has antibacterial properties which could be down to the plant based antioxidants it contains.
Cholera is not be something the western world is concerned about anymore. However in sub-Saharan Africa, this disease is still very prevalent.
This infection is the result of ingesting bacteria in contaminated food or water. In western Africa it was discovered that adding lime juice to meals it prevented cholera bacteria from multiplying.
One type of bacteria which you may have the misfortune to experience is E coli. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates each year 1 in 6 Americans gets sick because of foodborne bacteria.
Studies have proven that applying lime juice with a heat treatment eradicates the E. coli from food.
Acne is the effect of bacteria blocking the pores in your skin causing inflammation and the breakouts we are all too familiar with.
Lime juice can call upon the antioxidants and vitamin C it contains to create an antibacterial and anti-inflammatory environment. This helps stop bacteria flourishing.
Lime Juice Could Prevent Arthritis
Gout is a form of arthritis which causes uric acid crystal deposits to build up in the body. Usually starting in the feet, it causes inflammation and soreness in the joints affected.
Lime juice contains a high content of citric acid which could help break down those crystals preventing an episode occurring.
Lime Juice could Help Diabetes
The American Diabetes Association includes limes in their top 10 superfoods to include in any diabetic meal plan.
And for good reason, limes in particular the zest, juice, and pulp are a rich source of fiber.
Soluble dietary fiber takes longer to process in the body and is great for regulation of sugar in the blood. This avoids causing peaks in sugar levels which for diabetics could have serious consequences.
Lime Juice Could Help in the Fight Against Cancer
Limes contain many phytonutrients, plant based antioxidants which give protection to the body. These compounds are noted to have significant anti-cancer properties.
Limonoids are of one of those antioxidants, it’s also what gives limes the tangy bitterness.
Studies have shown limonoids not only inhibit the multiplication of cells in pancreatic cancer, but also cause the cancer cell to self destruct.
The powerful antioxidants in limes have also been linked with fighting breast, colon and liver cancer.
Limes Contain a Rich Source of Vitamin C
Vitamin C is also known as ascorbic acid and is found in all citrus fruits, including limes. The highest content is found in limes. One regular sized fruit contains 32% of your recommended daily intake alone.
Limes have such a high concentration of vitamin C, that not only should you expect a boost to your intake, but also the many health benefits it could provide.
Vitamin C enhances the immune system which keeps us healthy, creating resistance against colds, infections and viruses.
For skin health, it assists in producing collagen, which makes the skin smoother and helps with the anti aging process.
One of the most famous signs of vitamin C deficiency is scurvy. Admittedly in today’s society it’s very rare, but not impossible to experience. Alcoholism, poor nutrition or trendy “fad” diets are just a few factors which lead to an unbalanced diet and vitamin deficiency.
Initial symptoms of scurvy include fatigue, swollen, inflamed or bleeding gums. Over a longer period of time it causes more severe problems which include strokes, high blood pressure and gallbladder disease.
Precautions for Use
Generally the benefits of limes far outweigh the negatives, but there are a few precautions to be aware of.
Limes are very high in citric acid, in fact more than lemons which could play havoc with your dental enamel.
If you suffer with gastric ulcers it’s wise to avoid foods with high concentration of citric acid. This could stimulate further stomach acids and worsen your condition.
Lime juice could interact with certain medications for liver conditions, check with your healthcare advisor to be safe.
Lime Juice Recipes
Incorporating limes into a juice is a great way to receive all the benefits for your health without the “sour face”.
We would like to bring you our top five refreshing lime juice recipes, which will tickle your taste buds and keep you healthy too.
#1 Luscious Lime-berry Juice
Get an extra boost of vitamin C and antioxidants with this tasty tart juice.
- 3 oz fresh raspberries
- 1 lime
- Half a cup of mineral water
- Ice is optional
- Juice the raspberries and lime in your juicer
- Add the mineral water.
- Add ice you if wish and enjoy.
#2 Berry Lime Breeze
This “super berry” combo will guarantee to get your free radicals in a frenzy.
- 1 cup of strawberries
- 1 cup of blueberries
- 1 cup of ice
- 1 cup of water
- ½ a lime
- Garnish with fresh mint
- Juice the blueberries, strawberries and lime in your juicer
- Add the water
- Pour into a glass and garnish with mint.
#3 Lime Cucumber Cooler
This refreshing juice will keep your skin glowing and you feeling cool on any hot summer day.
- 11 oz cucumber
- 1/2 lime
- 1 medium apple
- 1.7 oz fresh mint, reserve some for garnish
- Juice the cucumber, lime, apple and mint in your juicer
- Pour into a glass and add ice and garnish with mint.
#4 Fruity Lime Punch
Pineapple and cherry make a seriously fruity combo, the lime creates the punch in this nutritious juice.
- 8 pitted cherries
- 1 fresh lime
- 2 sliced rounds of pineapple (1 inch thickness)
- Wash and pit the cherries place in your juicer
- Add the lime and pineapple
- Pour into a glass and add ice if you wish.
#5 Traffic Light Lime Juice
Carrots, lime and the spicy kick from ginger will get you seeing the green lights head on.
- 3 medium size carrots
- Half inch piece of fresh ginger
- 1 fresh lime
- Quarter cup of pomegranate seeds
- Juice the pomegranate seeds, carrots, lime and ginger in your juicer
- Pour into a glass and serve with ice