Limes and lemons are a very familiar fruit to those who prefer to live a healthier life by improving their diets. This is because these citrus fruits are very popular for being very low on calories and for having other nutritive importance. Though these fruits are very common to people, many people are not sure if there is any difference between lime and lemon. The fact is, even though there are evident differences between these two fruits, their functions are the same.
Lemon and lime differences
A number of things differentiate lemon and lime. The differences are in fact very clear. The most obvious one being the colour. We look at what distinguishes the two fruits from each other in detail below.
1. Acidity - lime vs lemon
Both these fruits are acidic, the only difference, however, comes in the level of acidity in them. Lime is more acidic compared to lemon which makes it suitable for losing weight and for reducing the levels of cholesterol in the body. The citric acidity of lemon is what gives it the sour taste it has. Lime, however, has three acids which are citric acid and 10% each of succinic acid and malic acid which makes it bitter.
You might also be asking, ‘are lemons and limes the same in colour? The answer is no. Lemons and limes are very different in colour and size. This is the main difference that will help you pick out lemons from limes. Lemons are large and yellow in colour while limes are small in size and green in colour. Any lemon that is partly green on the skin is not fully ripe but for the limes, you only get to know if they are ready to be consumed if they are the right size. Some people might also be wondering, "are limes unripe lemons?", because of their green colour. This is not the case. Limes are just green in colour.
If you happen to see a picture of lemon and lime, you will easily differentiate between the two. The shapes of these two fruits are also different in that lemons have an ovoid shape while limes have a round shape. Lemons also have a thicker skin than limes. For this matter, if you are trying to extract the juice out of lemons, you might need a lemon juicer for you to maximize the amount of lemon juice you extract. Limes, however, have thinner skin, making juice extraction easy. You can even extract the juice by pressing the skin of the fruit with your fingers.
Limes are bitter and tart in taste compared to lemons which are sour in taste. Limes are sometimes used to make cocktails and this is all thanks to their bitter taste. The bitter taste is due to its high acidity compared to the acidity of lemons. On the other hand, lemons are used for adding flavour to different cuisines and all the credit is given to their sour taste. The bitterness of lime is mostly associated with the compound limonoids. However, in many cases, very fresh limes are not as bitter.
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Due to the sour taste of lemons, they are widely used in salads and pasta dishes. Sometimes its juice is used on fish fillets and even meats. Lemons are sour as they have a higher concentration of the citric acid than other citric fruits such as oranges.
4. Nourishment for the body
It might be a little hard to differentiate between which is better in terms of nourishment but there are slight differences. Lemons are rich in magnesium and calcium. Magnesium and calcium are essential for the body as they help in maintaining healthy and strong bones. This is why lemons are very good if taken regularly. Limes, on the other hand, have vitamin A, phosphorus, calcium, folate and vitamin C. Limes have a 50% vitamin A content while lemons have a 50% vitamin C.
5. pH levels
pH value is the figurative number explaining either the acidity or alkalinity of a substance. The numbers range from 0-14 with 7 as the value of a neutral substance. In this case of lemon and lime differences, limes have a PH of 2.00 to 2.35. Lemons, on the other hand, have a pH of 2.00 to 2.60. This information, therefore, shows that limes are more acidic in comparison to lemons.
The difference between lime and lemon is also evident in their origins. Lemon is believed to have originated from India, Burma and China. The origin of lime, though not well known is believed to be Indonesia or South East Asia and brought to the Mediterranean and later to North Africa.
Although the difference between lime and lemon is evident, the benefits of these citrus fruits are immense. Limes and lemons are very good for the overall health of the body. If taken regularly, they can help in skin rejuvenation and also help fight infections.
Lemons and limes are also good in helping you lose weight and minimize cholesterol level. Lemons and limes also help you to drink more water if you dread drinking plain water. Just adding some lemon or lime juice to your drinking water will improve its taste.
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