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Endowed with many medicinal benefits, tangerine is among the most popular citrus in the world.
The fruit of the tangerine tree, Citrus reticulata Blanco, a tree of the botanical family Rutaceae, that is very similar to the orange tree. The main difference between the two is that, the tangerine tree is smaller and more fragile.
There are many varieties of tangerine, each with different taste and sweetness. The two best-known varieties are
* SATSUMA (which is greenish or light orange in color), and
* The CLEMENTINE (which is smaller, deep orange in color and much more sweeter).
Due to its sweetness, tender pulp and low acidity, tangerine is considered as one of the most popular citrus in the world. Moreover, tangerines are so simple to peel, this is the main reason why most children consider it as their favourite fruit.
Tangerines are being grown in some parts of North America, Southern Europe, and North Africa since the nineteenth century when they arrived from China.


The tangerine’s properties or composition is very similar to that of the orange. But almost all the contents are found in lower proportions than in orange. Although, tangerines and oranges are very similar in properties, but the tangerine’s are less intense.
As a result of the similarity of oranges and tangerines, they show the following properties :

* Fight infections
* Acts as a laxative
* Acts as a depurant
* Make the blood more fluidy
* Are remineralizing
* Are hypotensive
* Are antiallergenic
* Anticarcinogenic

For more properties and the composition of tangerines, refer to that of orange

Health benefits / medicinal uses

Tangerines are so easy to digest and eat, hence, are particularly beneficial for the elderly and childrens.
They have the following medicinal values:

* Hypertension
Treatment done with tangerine provides excellent results in cases of hypertension and arteriosclerosis. The treatment is done by eating 1.5 to 2 kilos of tangerine as the only food for one-two days a week for a month.

* Childhood fever
Tangerines are able to treat childhood fevers due to their ability to fight infection, replace lost minerals and give the body more strength.

* The consumption of Tangerines is also highly recommended in cases of colds, flu and throat infections.

* Cancer
All citrus prevents cancer, they possess anticarcinogenic properties, and when eaten regularly, they help prevent cancer. The anticarcinogenic effect of these citrus has been confirmed using laboratory animals.

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Abbati is a student from the department of Biological sciences, Ahmadu Bello Univeristy, Zaria. He loves learning about the medicinal properties of foods, and the need to explore them!

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