Healthy Fiber Foods – Oranges

Dense nutrition and delicious flavor make oranges one of our favorite healthy fiber foods.

How Much Fiber?

Grams Amount Description Calories
3.1 1 orange Fresh, Orange, Commercial variety (2-5/8 inch diameter) 62
7.2 1 orange Raw with peel, Orange (no seeds) 100
4.3 1 cup Fresh, Orange sections(Commercial variety) 85
4.4 1 cup Fresh, Orange sections(Florida) 85
3.6 1 cup Fresh, Orange sections(Navels) 81
4.5 1 cup Fresh, Orange sections(Valencias) 88
Nutrient Data Laboratory Database (SR22), Agricultural Research Service, USDA

Important Nutrients

  • Vitamin C
  • Folate
  • Vitamin B6
  • Pantothenic acid
  • Potassium
  • Lutein
  • Zeaxanthin
  • Polyphenols

For Your Health

A healthful source of vitamin C, the popular orange is also an excellent source of fiberfolate, vitamin B1, and potassium. This fiber food has over a hundred important phytonutrients that supplypolyphenolanti-inflammatory, and antioxidant compounds known to offer protection against cancers and heart diseases.

One research group in Australia reports positive effects associated with citrus consumption that cross a broad range of diseases:

Alzheimer’s disease
Crohn’s disease
Macular Degeneration
Multiple Sclerosis
Lung Function
Parkinson’s Disease
Ulcerative Colitis

That list makes eating an orange appear to be good for almost everything.

Here is a list of a few of the nutritional compounds in this fruit responsible for various health issues. Research continues to associate particular compounds with specific health benefits.

Health Issue What an Orange Provides
Respiratory Health beta-cryptoxanthin
Rheumatoid Arthritis carotenoids,
Oxidative Cell Damage flavanoids,
hydroxycinnamic acids
Cancer Risk limonoids,
various antioxidant elements
High Blood Pressure herperidin,
Iron Absorption vitamin C
Less Cholestrol Plaque polymethoxylated flavones,
Cardiovascular Disease folate,
vitamin C,
Obesity, Weight low fat, low calorie,
dense nutrition,
dietary fiber

In a Heart Healthy Diet

Oranges are plentiful in most markets year around. Look for fruit that is firm, without soft spots.

Color can range from light to dark orange, depending on variety of fruit and conditions of growth. Uneven color can be natural and a fruit showing partial green tones can be ripe. Some non-organic fruit can have skin injected with color dye to improve appearance, so choosing an orange by color is difficult.

Oraganic fruit is preferred when buying oranges because pesticide residues are often found on oranges marketed in the United States.

Wash the outside of fruit and store whole in a cool location. Refrigerate after fruit is peeled, cut, or sliced.

Orange juice is available in refrigerated containers, frozen concentrates, and various size cans and boxed packets. Canned and frozen packages of fruit sections are also available.

1 medium fruit Valencia Navel
Calories 59 kcal 69 kcal
Fiber 3.0 g 3.1 g
Protein 1.26 g 1.27 g
Calcium 48 mg 60 mg
Iron 0.11 mg 0.18 mg
Magnesium 12 mg 14 mg
Potassium 217 mg 232 mg
Zinc 0.07 mg 0.11 mg
Vitamin C 58.7 mg 82.7 mg
Folate 47 mcg 48 mcg
Lutein + Zeaxanthin 181 mcg
g=gram, mg=milligram, mcg=microgram

Sources for this Healthy Fiber Foods page include:
The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIRO): Collingwood, Australia.
Pratt, Steven, M.D. and Kathy Matthews. SuperFoods Rx. New York: William Morrow, 2004.
Nutrient Data Laboratory Database (SR22), Agricultural Research Service, USDA

Nutrition based on data assembled from United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference.
g=grams, mg=milligrams, mcg=micrograms, kcal=calories