Citrus aurantifolia (Lime) is a citrus fruit and an excellent source of vitamin C and flavonoids which have unique antioxidant properties. This study determined the effects of C. aurantifolia on the bodyweight and hematological indices of rats. A total of 20 rats of both sex weighing between 120 and 130 g were randomized into 4 groups of five rats each and used. Group A: Normal Control; Group B: 2 ml/kg of C. aurantifolia fruit juice; Group C: 4 ml/kg of C. aurantifolia fruit juice; Group D: 8 ml/kg of C. aurantifolia fruit juice. The C. aurantifolia fruit was freshly squeezed and the juice was administered to the test groups for a period of three months. The haematological parameters were analysed using standard methods. The results revealed that administration of C. aurantifolia juice caused a significant difference (p<0.05) in the bodyweights of the experimented groups from week 3 up to week 12 compared with the normal control group. After three months of the administration, only the platelet counts showed a significant difference (p>0.05) in group B compared with other groups throughout the three months of administration. Therefore, it is then concluded that bioactive substances present in lime like lycopene and vitamin C induces the proliferation of white blood cells in the blood circulation. Hence, it was proven that lime has a protective effect which may serve as an alternative treatment option in patients with leukopenia.
Key words: Lime, three months, administration, platelet, fruit, groups.
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