Lime is a small citrus fruit that resembles a small orange. The color of its skin and flesh is green. The fruit, juice, oil and peel are used to make medicinal products. Oil extracted from the crushed lime fruit is known as distilled lime oil.
Lime is consumed across the world in different forms including jams, cocktails, beverages, candies, and snacks.
The oil extracted from crushed lime fruit has several uses in soft drink concentrates, hair oils, toothpaste, and cosmetic products. Lime fruits are commonly grown in the tropics and the Mediterranean area.
Table of Contents
- 1 The Health Benefits Of Lime
- 2 Possible Side Effects Associated With Lime
- 3 Top Products Containing Lime
- 4 Final Thoughts
The Health Benefits Of Lime
Scurvy is a disorder caused by the lack of vitamin C in the body. Lime is a well-known cure for this deficiency disease. Scurvy is characterized by symptoms such as cracked lips and lip corners, mouth and tongue ulcers, and normal cold symptoms. Patients with scurvy may also present with spongy, swollen, and bleeding gums. Lime is an excellent source of vitamin C. The high vitamin C content in lime makes it the best cure for scurvy.
In the past, soldiers were given lime in large quantities as a preventive measure for scurvy which was a fatal disease back then. Currently, lime is distributed among workers who are based in highly polluted areas such as painting shops and cement factories. The fruit helps protect the workers from scurvy.
When lime juice and its natural oil are consumed orally, they are beneficial to the skin. Lime oil can also cure dermatological disorders when it is applied topically. Drinking lime juice keeps the skin moisturized and smooth. Lime is high in flavonoids and vitamin C which help maintain the skin healthy and rejuvenated.
The fruit also has antibiotic and disinfectant effects which help protect the skin against infections. The antibiotic effect also helps reduce body odor. Topical application of lime oil on the skin removes dead skin cells, cures dandruff, and rashes.
Lime juice or oil can also be added to bathing water to give one a refreshing bathing experience. Most cosmetic products contain lime as an ingredient due to its benefits on the skin.
3. Promotes Digestion
The overwhelming scent produced by lime in the mouth induces the production of saliva. The increase amounting to saliva in the mouth helps the enzymatic breakdown of food in the mouth before it reaches the stomach.
The natural acidity in lime juice also aids the process of digestion. The flavonoids which are found in lime oil stimulate the release of digestive juices in the stomach. The flavonoids also boost the production of bile and acids. The plant pigments may also promote peristaltic motion of the gut.
4. Management Of Diabetes
The American Diabetes Association considers lime as a diabetes superfood due to its high fiber content. Lime contains a high concentration of soluble fiber which regulates the absorption of glucose into the bloodstream.
Consuming lime has been shown to lower the occurrence of blood sugar spikes which is commonly seen in diabetic patients. Lime is one of the fruits that has low glycemic index. The low glycemic index indicates that lime does not lead to unexpected blood sugar spikes in addition to its high fiber content.
5. Management Of Cholera
Cholera is still a fatal disease in some parts of the world. The disorder is caused by a bacterial organism known as Vibrio cholerae. Lime and citrus fruits have been shown to help cure cholera in affected individuals.
Lime is an effective disinfectant when it is added to drinking water. When a person has consumed cholera-infected water, they may drink lime juice to reduce the risk of developing cholera. During the cholera outbreak in Guinea-Bissau in the year 1994, several studies were performed to determine the anticholera effects of lime juice. Most of the results were promising.
6. Reduction Of Fever
The high concentration of vitamin C in lime juice may help lower the body temperature. Patients suffering from illness can benefit from the use of lime juice and oil. It is advisable to consume a high concentration of lime and water to help manage a high body fever. However, when the fever is mild to moderate, one can include other fruit juices to help lower the body temperature.
7. Management Of Arthritis
Arthritis is caused by the accumulation of uric acid in the body. Uric acid is a waste product that gets excreted from the body through urine. Its buildup in the body may cause health problems associated with pain and inflammation. Lime fruit contains citric acid which is capable of dissolving uric acid.
The intake of lime juice increases the levels of citric acid in the body. The citric acid dissolves uric acid leading to their excretion through urine. The anti-inflammatory effects of lime juice help reduce inflammation that is common in arthritis.
Possible Side Effects Associated With Lime
According to WebMD, lime juice is likely safe for most adults when it is consumed in amounts found in food. Lime peel is possibly safe when it is consumed orally in medicinal amounts.
The application of lime oil directly on the skin is potentially unsafe. Topical application of lime oil to the skin may cause problems such as irritation, itching, and development of a rash. Lime oil can also increase the sensitivity of the skin to sunlight. Individuals who are light skinned should consider wearing protective clothing.
There is no sufficient evidence on the safety of lime in pregnant or breastfeeding women. It is advisable to avoid lime during pregnancy to avoid possible adverse effects.
Top Products Containing Lime
1. Santa Cruz, Organic 100% Lime Juice
The Santa Cruz organic lime juice can be used as an alternative to vinegar. Organic lime juice is the primary ingredient. The product has an overall rating of 4.3 out of a possible five stars. Its price on Amazon is $5.33.
2. True Lime Bulk Pack
The product contains natural ingredients. It does not contain preservatives, artificial sweeteners, sodium, or sugars. It has an overall rating of 4.5 stars out of a possible five stars on Amazon. The product’s price on Amazon is $23.28.
3. Realime 100% Lime Juice
The product is excellent for use in meat marinades, salads, and recipes. It contains juice from concentrate, sodium benzoate, and lime oil. The product has an overall rating of 4.4 stars out of a possible five stars on Amazon. Its price on Amazon varies from $2.99 to $13.99.
Despite the several health benefits that are associated with lime fruit, it is advisable to consume it in moderation. The citrus fruit is related to adverse effects such as allergic reaction on the skin, development of a rash, and itching.
More studies should be conducted to find out the possible side effect of lime in pregnant and breastfeeding women.