Grapefruit is full of health benefits and it helps with weight loss! Also, grapefruit helps lower cholesterol, fights heart disease and so many other things. It is a powerful superfood.
Remember when a person gorged on grapefruit in the 1980s and seriously lost lots of weight? It was highly restrictive but it turns out all those restrictions were not necessary, learn more below.
Health Benefits of Grapefruits
Grapefruit and Weight Loss
Eat half a grapefruit before each meal; it can help you lose up to a pound a week before sensible meals!
Or eat whatever you usually do and lose 3.6 pounds in 12 weeks. – Research at the Nutrition and Medical Research Centre at Scripps Clinic
Strangely, researchers are not sure how this works. They do know something in the grapefruit balances your insulin levels. This could certainly cause weight loss but there may be other factors involved also.
Here are two studies verifying grapefruits help with weight loss.
- A 12-week study had people who were overweight consume half a fresh grapefruit before a meal for 12 weeks, the results showed they lost almost 5 pounds after 4 weeks, and almost 11 ½ pounds after 12 weeks.
- Another study with 91 obese patients was conducted to find out how grapefruit affected body weight, insulin resistance, and metabolic syndrome. They found that those who ate half of a fresh grapefruit before meals (meals had no restriction) lost 3.5 pounds in 12 weeks, improved insulin resistance and had a reduction in two-hour post-glucose insulin level.
“So far I’ve always kept my diet secret but now I might as well tell everyone what it is. Lots of grapefruit throughout the day and plenty of virile young men at night.” – Angie Dickinson
We know grapefruit is helpful for weight loss. Grapefruits are also full of pectin, nutrients, and are low in calories and contain no saturated fats or cholesterol. On top of all those wonderful elements, they have many health benefits.
Red Grapefruit Lowers Cholesterol & Fights Heart Disease
One red grapefruit a day can help keep heart disease away, according to a study by Israeli researchers in 2006. A major risk factor for heart disease is high blood cholesterol. In the study, the patients consuming one grapefruit per day significantly reduced cholesterol compared to a control group of patients that did not. The researchers say it may be because grapefruit has a high level of antioxidants.
Helps Reduce Lung Cancer Risk
White grapefruit contains a high amount of the flavonoid, naringin, which inhibits the activation of a cancer-causing enzyme. Pink grapefruit has some too, along with the antioxidant lycopene.
Inhibits Colon Cancer
Limonin, grapefruit pulp powder, and the flavonoid naringin, were examined in a study in relation to colon cancer cells. The scientists concluded that eating grapefruit may help to suppress the development of colon cancer.
Helps Repair Prostate Cancer
A study has shown that the citrus flavonoid naringenin stimulates DNA repair in prostate cancer cells.
Flushes Heavy Metal
It is full of pectin which binds to heavy metals, flushing them out in the digestive process. A study was performed with hospitalized children between the ages of 5 and 12 years who had high blood serum levels of lead. They were given three dosages of citrus pectin per day for 28 days. The scientists found that there was a dramatic decrease in blood serum levels of lead as a result.
Full of vitamin C, to help keep colds at bay
Another health benefit of grapefruit is that half a grapefruit has 38.4 mg of vitamin C which is 64 percent of the daily requirement.
1 cup of fresh raw pink grapefruit juice has 93.9 mg which is 156 percent of the daily requirement.
This compares with oranges, which have about 95 mg of vitamin C per 1 cup of oranges.
An Excellent Liver Detoxifier
Grapefruit contains glutathione, which helps the liver detoxify harmful chemicals.
According to research at Massachusetts General Hospital it may even help combat hepatitis C infection.
“Phytonutrients in grapefruit, called limonoids, inhibit tumor formation by promoting the formation of glutathione-S-transferase, a detoxifying enzyme. This enzyme sparks a reaction in the liver that helps to make toxic compounds more water soluble for excretion from the body.
Since those with chronic Hepatitis C are at a greater risk for developing cancer of the liver, inhibiting tumor formation is especially important. By helping the liver clear out cancer-causing toxins, limonoids’ promotion of detoxification enzymes is a simple way to ward off the development of cancer.” ~ Hepatitis Central
- Grapefruits Burn More Calories Than They Contain. This fruit is similar to celery, as it is made up of about 60 percent water, with a bit of healthy fiber thrown in. The fiber helps with digestion and makes you feel full.
- Full of pectin that binds to heavy metals flushing them out.
- Has antiviral compounds that cleanse harmful viruses.
- Is an excellent intestinal and liver detoxifier.
- It is full of vitamin C, to help keep colds at bay.
- The grapefruit’s ancestor is the pummelo which is native to Indonesia and Malaysia.
- The seeds of pummelo were brought to the West Indies in 1693 by an English ship commander.
- It is thought that it might have been a horticultural accident between the orange and the pummelo.
- In the 17th century, citrus fruit was brought from Indonesia to Barbados.
- The first grapefruits were about the size of oranges.
- In the 18th century, they were discovered in Barbados.
- In 1814 in Jamaica, the name “grapefruit” came about because it hangs in clusters like grapes.
- In 1823, it came to the U.S. but it was not popular because of its thick skin.
- The grapefruit trees were planted in Florida at the beginning of the 19th century but didn’t become a commercial crop until later.
- Today, Florida is the major producer of grapefruits.
Did You Know?
- The name grapefruit comes from the way it grows, in a bunch like grapes.
- It was at first named the “forbidden fruit”.
- Grapefruit trees can produce for 30-40 years.
- 1.23 million tons of grapefruit were harvested in the United States in 2006.
- They are hand-picked, no mechanical harvesting is used.
- It is considered a berry botanically.
- The grapefruit is one of the Seven Wonders of Barbados.
- Some mature grapefruit trees can yield up to 1500 pounds of fruit in a season. The average yield is 350 pounds.
- Grapefruit is often cooked to remove the sourness, making them a sweet in Costa Rica.
How to Choose a Sweet Grapefruit
They have a reputation for being sour and bitter, which can be a bit of a turn-off. If you learn how to choose a tasty grapefruit and some delicious ways to eat them, grapefruits can be sweet!
- Slightly soft and heavy are the first things to feel for. The heaviness means the interior has been converted into sugar.
- Winter is the best season to eat grapefruit.
- Oro Blanco grapefruit is the sweetest, most tender, and juiciest of all the grapefruits. It has a golden yellow peel with a thick rind, and pith up to a 1/2 inch deep with a large hollow core.
- Pink and red grapefruits are sweeter than the other white grapefruit varieties as a general rule. Choose a grapefruit with at least some red pigment for the sweetest fruit. Also, red and pink grapefruit get their colour from lycopene, a powerful antioxidant that helps fight cancer.
- A good quality pink or red grapefruit has a smooth, firm, glossy thin peel. When the rind is thin, the fruit will be sweeter. When the peel is thick, the grapefruit is not ripe.
- Look for an imperfect looking grapefruit when buying pink or red ones. Look for small irregular patches of gray-brown on the peel, as that is a sign of sweetness. Those patches developed from being in cold weather as they take up to 18 months to ripen. Often, they are harvested before they are ripe because markings are thought to spoil the beauty of the fruit. However, this need for perfection has given us sour grapefruits!
- Grapefruits that are light and spongy, have a hard and thick peel, or are green in colour, are not sweet.
“Life is like a grapefruit. Well, it’s sort of orangy-yellow and dimpled on the outside, wet and squidgy in the middle. It’s got pips inside, too. Oh, and some people have a half a one for breakfast.” ~ Douglas Adams
Now you learned about the grapefruit health benefits, and know how to select the best, sweetest grapefruit, you have lots of good reasons to include it into your diet!
Here Are Three Delicious Grapefruit Recipes For You
Healthy Homemade Grapefruit Juice – Store-bought grapefruit juice with sugar and added preservatives is not healthy. Also, it has usually been brought to a high temperature to preserve it, which reduces its nutritional value. The best way to have a healthy glass of grapefruit juice full of health benefits is to make it yourself. You do not need a juicer. In fact, using a blender is better because a juicer removes the pulp, which is full of nutrients.
Delicious Winter Grapefruit Smoothie – How about a colourful fruit breakfast filled with nutritious greens, grapefruit, orange and flax seeds? This nutritious smoothie is very filling too.
Juicy Oranges are Full of Health Benefits for You– Delicious, juicy oranges are a healthy treat! They are for sure a very healthy superfood as they help fight cancer, fight viral infections, relieve constipation and much more.
Health Benefits of Lemons, the Alkaline Superfood – Lemons’ health benefits are immense. To begin they are acidic to the taste but are alkaline-forming in the body. In fact, they are one of the most alkaline-forming superfoods; this makes them great for balancing a highly acidic condition in the body. Also, they are full of many health benefits.
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READ: Superfoods – Over 100 of the Healthiest Foods You Should Have in Your Diet and learn more about the variety of Superfoods we think you should have in your diet.