Orange you happy it's July? We are! July is known for hot, summer days and an abundance of fruits, flowers, and herbs, so this month we honor Orange Peel as our Herb of The Month. With its bright, round fruit counterpart, it's no surprise that Orange Peel represents the sun, happiness, and fertility in most cultures. Let's explore Orange Peel's many virtues from around the world!
Orange Peel Traditions
Citrus sinensis, better known as Orange Peel, is an important part of herbal tradition. The Japanese traditional herbal-based practice called Kampo Medicine centralizes on controlling and maintaining digestive function by enhancing motility in the gastrointestinal tract, improving bodily fluids and promoting digestion. Orange Peel's use within this methodology has been clinically studied and used for inpatient care.
Orange Peel is most popular for its digestive supporting qualities. Its aromatic plant compounds or essential oils are naturally found in the rind and provide a bitter and pungent taste. You can capture these medicinal qualities through a hot water infusion, steam distillation (for topical use) or liquid extractions like tinctures! The steam distillation method is most common for isolating the essential oils from Orange Peel also known as Bergamot Essential oil.
For hundreds of years along the Calabrian coast of Italy, locals have partnered with their Orange tree varieties to create traditional preparations such as hydrosols, ointments, and conserves like marmalade.
Orange Peel for Modern times
Today, the Calabrian region is famous across the globe for their exquisite bergamot essential oils, which are widely used in perfume or cologne production. However, in WishGarden Herb's corner of the world, we cherish Orange Peel for its optimal bioavailability in the body when prepared in tincture form. Orange Peel's naturally high aromatic compounds are better extracted and better absorbed internally when using herbalism methods vs. other extraction methods. This method includes using solvents like alcohol, water, and vegetable glycerin - all organically and sustainably sourced, of course!
Our Kick-Ass Allergy Seasonal Rescue is a powerful histamine-balancing formula that has multiple herbs, however the Orange Peel plays a very important role. It directs the partnering herbs' movement by binding to bitter receptor points and moving herbs quickly around the body. The bitter compounds, like tannins and organic citric or malic acids move throughout our lymphatic systems, however they begin their work with the bitter signals in the mouth called 25 T2R receptors. These receptors are like a doorbell to our systems! Do you ever notice how your mouth starts to salivate when something bitter hits your tongue? Those are your bitter receptors hard at work! In addition to its medicinal bitter actions, its sweet taste gives a lovely balance and addition to any food grade product.
Botany of Orange Peel
Citrus sinensis belongs to the Rutaceae family, which has several global economically important fruit trees in the family. Orange Peel's leaves are smooth on the surface, alternate, ovate-oblong, acute, slightly serrated on the edges, and the stalk more or less winged. You can also distinguish Citrus sinensis from its lime or lemon relatives by the elegant aroma when the tree flowers that have 5 petals and twenty stamens in the center. These little yet mighty white flowers are steam distilled and known as Neroli essential oil. One of the most delightful aromas in the world!
What is Orange Peel good for?
In addition to worldwide traditional use, Orange Peel's medicinal usage has a long, juicy list. This delightful rind is packed with powerful vitamins like C, A, folate, riboflavin, thiamine, B6, and calcium. Sounds like a multi-vitamin, right? It makes a great lemon replacement in oxymel, cold water infusion, or simply to balance taste in herbal formulas while supporting optimal health! In herbalism, we cherish orange peel for its taste, digestive support, and carminative actions. Carminative herbs contain high amounts of sticky pungent oils that help harmonize digestive flow and support healthy tissue in or around the GI tract. Orange Peel's dynamic bitter yet sweet, neutral, cooling or warming energies accomplish a juicy worldwide reputation, what a gem!
A few of WishGarden Herb's formulas containing Orange Peel:
Lauren Ann Nichols-Sheffler attended The Colorado School of Clinical Herbalism and received her certificate in medical herbalism. She is the owner of Blue Yarrow Herbs aka Herbal Vice, an herbal product company practicing bioregional herbalism by cultivating plants and sourcing locally. Lauren loves educating and advocating for plant sustainability. She is the sourcing and Purchasing manager for WishGarden Herbs.
For educational purposes only. This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease, or sell any product.