Can lemon peels prevent cancer?

Several social media users have shared a post that says lemon peels can potentially prevent cancer.

By Sunanda Naik  Published on  2 Jun 2023 11:43 AM GMT
Can lemon peels prevent cancer?

Hyderabad: Several social media users have shared a post that says lemon peels can potentially prevent cancer.


Similar posts can be seen here.

What is chemotherapy?

NHS defines chemotherapy as a cancer treatment where medicine is used to kill cancer cells. There are many different types of chemotherapy medicine, but they all work in a similar way. They stop cancer cells from reproducing, which prevents them from growing and spreading in the body.

Fact Check

NewsMeter found the claim to be false.

How does chemotherapy work?

According to, “Chemotherapy is a systemic medication. This means it travels through the bloodstream and reaches all parts of the body. There are many different kinds of chemotherapy. In general, drugs used for chemotherapy are powerful chemicals that treat cancer by attacking cells during specific parts of the cell cycle. All cells go through the cell cycle, which is how new cells are made. Cancer cells go through this process faster than normal cells, so chemotherapy has more of an effect on these fast-growing cells.”

What’s so special about lemon peels?

“Modified citrus pectin is a carbohydrate found in the peels of citrus fruits modified to be absorbed into the intestinal tract for easier human consumption. In its natural state, pectin is an indigestible dietary fiber,” explains the National Centre for Health Research.

Pointing to an animal study, it further said, “Animal studies have found that MCP can inhibit the spread of prostate, breast, and skin cancer to other organs. MCP makes it difficult for cancer cells to break off and spread, although it has no impact on the initial tumor. However, there is almost no information about whether MCP is effective in humans.”

According to UAMS Health, “The myth significantly exaggerates the potential of lemons and lemon juice as a cancer remedy. The beneficial compounds in lemon juice have shown promise in recent studies, but the levels found in foods may only enhance the body’s ability to fight off cancer. In the end, there is no proven scientific replacement for radiation therapy or chemotherapy.”

According to National Academies, “Claims that limonene can fight cancer are based on laboratory studies of cancer cells growing in dishes. In some of those studies, limonene seemed to slow, block, or help kill some types of cancer cells growing in the lab. Some studies in mice also suggest that limonene may slow the growth of some tumors, including liver, colon, and pancreatic cancers.”

Hence, it is evident that there is no conclusive study that suggests that lemon peels can be a replacement for chemotherapy. Talk to your healthcare provider before trying social media remedies.

Claim Review:Lemon peels can potentially prevent cancer.
Claimed By:Social media user
Claim Reviewed By:NewsMeter
Claim Source:Facebook
Claim Fact Check:False
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