See also: Lime oil
Common Names: Lime, Green Lemon, Key Lime, Mexican Lime, Persian Lime, Sour Lemon, Tahiti Lime, West Indian Lime
The Lime is native to the Indo-Malayan region. It was unknown in Europe before the Crusades. From Europe, it was introduced into the Caribbean islands and Mexico. It is now grown in tropical regions almost throughout the world, particularly in Florida. There are two main types of this small, lemon-shaped green citrus fruit: the acidic (the chief kinds being Persian Limes and Mexican or Key Limes), which is commercially grown, and the sweet, which is uncommon in North America. Limes have been crossed with other types of citrus.
Limes are available, if not common, throughout the industrialised world, and have many traditional uses in the developing world. Sweetened or unsweetened bottled Lime juice, frozen Lime juice, Lime syrup and limeade are some of the more popular Lime products and are available in most supermarkets. The Lime is used in mixed drinks (like margaritas), as a marinade, garnish, and sauce, and in the famous Key Lime pie. Limes are often made into jam, jelly and marmalade, and they are sometimes pickled. The juice and the skin oil are used for flavourings in processed foods. The minced leaves are consumed in certain Javanese dishes. In the Philippines, the chopped peel is made into a sweetmeat with milk and coconut. In tropical Africa, Lime twigs are popular chewsticks. Limes are an excellent source of vitamin C.
The juice has been used in the process of dyeing leather, and as an ingredient in cosmetics. The dehydrated peel is fed to cattle. In India, the powdered dried peel and the sludge remaining after clarifying Lime juice are employed for cleaning metal. The hand-pressed peel oil is utilised in the perfume industry.
The juice is regarded as antiseptic, tonic, antiscorbutic, astringent, diuretic, and digestive. It is used as a remedy for intestinal hemorrhage and hemorrhoids, heart palpitations, headache, insect bites, convulsive cough, rheumatism, arthritis, falling hair, bad breath, and ulcers. The juice and the oil mixed together are given as a vermifuge. The pickled fruit is part of a poultice to allay neuralgia, and is eaten to relieve indigestion. The root bark serves as a febrifuge, as does the seed kernel, ground and mixed with Lime juice. The leaves are a treatment for skin and eye diseases, fever, sore throat, thrush, headache and post-partum pain. In addition, there are many purely superstitious uses of the Lime in Malaya.
IGE AND IMMUNE:
Allergy reactions (as other citrus fruit). Contact Dermatitis and dermatitis.
Contact urticaria. (Picardo 1988 ref.2351 8)
Sensitisation to pollen from the Lime tree may occur. (Bousquet 1984 ref.4396 4)
See also: Lime oil
Barman, Food industry
A report on a bartender with hand dermatitis had allergic contact sensitivity to the skin of lemon, lime, and orange but not to their juices. Although most reported cases of citrus peel allergy are due to d-limonene, for our patient, reactions to patch tests for geraniol and citral, two minor components of citrus peel oil, were positive, whereas those for d-limonene were negative. (Cardullo 1989 ref.7732 1)
A 6-year-old boy presented with marked, symmetric, painful erythema and edema of both hands that rapidly developed into dramatic bullae covering the entire dorsum of the hands. The history revealed that the hands had been bathed in lime juice for a prolonged period in the preparation of limeade. This resulted in a phytophotodermatitis, a phototoxic reaction, occurring in skin exposed to sunlight after contact with plants containing furanocoumarins. In Lime, rind contained 6- to 182-fold concentrations of all furanocoumarins measured when compared with pulp. Bergapten was the most abundant substance in the rind. (Wagner 2002 ref.7735 5)
Coumarins, resulting in Phototoxic dermatitis, in lime pulp were 13 to 182 times less concentrated than those in the peel. (Nigg 1993 ref.2890 2)
97 (16%) of 622 children and seven (7%) of 104 counsellors developed a phototoxic dermatitis. The eruptions were confined to the hands, wrists, and forearms, and appeared as discrete and confluent polymorphous patches and linear streaks. The cause was attributed to the making of pomander balls (sachets), which was made by children puncturing the skin of limes (the principal component) with scissors, releasing oils known to contain photoreactive furocoumarin (psoralen) compounds. (Gross 1987 ref.2954 4)
Phytophotodermatitis. (Egan 1993 ref.1057 7)
Information supplied from an abridged section of:
Allergy Advisor - Zing Solutions
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