Popular oranges are among the healthiest fruits you can consume. They can be eaten alone, juiced or even incorporated into savory dishes like salads. An orange's calories can range substantially, depending on the size of the fruit.
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An orange usually has between 45 and 85 calories. The exact number depends on its size.
Orange Calories and Nutrition Facts
According to the Mayo Clinic, most people should consume around six servings of fruits and vegetables each day. The USDA states that 1 cup of orange sections equals 180 grams. This is also the approximate size of one large orange.
A cup of orange sections has 85 calories. One large orange's calories are just a bit more, at 86 calories. Your average small (96 gram) orange's calories has 45 calories.
Every cup of orange sections has 0.2 grams of fat and 1.7 grams of protein. A cup of oranges also has 21.2 grams of carbohydrates. Out of these carbohydrates, 4.3 grams come from dietary fiber, while 16.8 grams come from sugar. A cup of orange sections also has a variety of essential nutrients, including:
- 6 percent of the daily value (DV) for calcium
- 7 percent of the DV for potassium
- 9 percent of the DV for copper
- 13 percent of the DV for vitamin B1 (thiamin)
- 6 percent of the DV for vitamin B2 (riboflavin)
- 9 percent of the DV for vitamin B5
- 6 percent of the DV for vitamin B6
- 14 percent of the DV for vitamin B9 (folic acid)
- 106 percent of the DV for vitamin C
Oranges also contain small amounts (between 1 and 4 percent of the DV) for a variety of other essential vitamins and minerals, including iron, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc, manganese, selenium, vitamin A, vitamin B3 (niacin) and vitamin E.
According to a December 2015 study in the journal BMC Chemistry, citrus fruits like oranges also have many different beneficial bioactive compounds. These include various types of antioxidants.
Oranges vs. Other Fruits
In comparison to other commonly consumed fruits, oranges are fairly high in calories. The USDA states that:
- A cup of grapefruit: 74 calories per 230 grams
- A cup of strawberries: 53 calories per 166 grams
- A cup of apple slices: 65 calories per 125 grams
- A cup of banana slices: 134 calories per 150 grams
But as you see, a cup is a measurement that can differ somewhat among these fruits. Gram for gram, oranges are calorically in the middle of these fruits. If you compare 100-gram-sized servings, you'll find that there are:
- 52 calories in an apple
- 89 calories in a banana
- 32 calories in a grapefruit
- 47 calories in an orange
- 32 calories in strawberries
Overall, all of these fruits are rich in different nutrients and fairly low in calories. Consuming a wide variety of fruits is recommended by the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. A variation of plant-based foods in your diet helps you stay healthy.
Read more: 5 Tricky Fruits and How to Eat Them
If you're concerned about your intake of carbohydrates — specifically the amount of sugar versus dietary fiber you're consuming — you may want to mainly consume fruits like strawberries. These have the lowest amount of net carbs.
In contrast, bananas have the most total dietary fiber. However, they also have the most sugar and overall carbohydrate content.
- Mayo Clinic: "1-2-3 Approach to Eating Fruits and Vegetables"
- Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health: "Vegetables and Fruits"
- MyFoodData: "Nutrition Comparison of Strawberries, Grapefruit, Bananas, Apples, and Oranges"
- BMC Chemistry: "Citrus Fruits as a Treasure Trove of Active Natural Metabolites That Potentially Provide Benefits for Human Health"
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Fruit of the Month: Oranges