Grapefruit Juice is the New Red Wine

Recently, grapefruit, by virtue of its rich flavonoids, is being viewed as the safe non-alcoholic alternative to red wine. That’s right! It has the cardiovascular benefits of red wine, without the risks and calories associated with red wine!  Let’s find out why . . .

A Brief History

Thought to be a cross between a pomelo and an orange, the grapefruit found its way from Taiwan to Barbados in the 1600s, and then Florida about 100 years later. Today, Florida is the center for grapefruit cultivation competing along-side newcomers Israel, Brazil, and South Africa.

 Grapefruit Lesson One: choose fresh, bright-red fruit!.

The ruby red variation remains the best-selling variety, and it’s not only because the bright color is attention-getting, it’s also because red grapefruits contains more flavonoids and anthocyanins — including lycopene — than their paler cousins.

Lycopene is also found in other yellow/red fruits such as watermelon, tomatoes, and papaya. It lowers triglycerides (making it diabetes-friendly), lycopene delivers high-capacity carotenoids which protect our skin from UV.

Here’s the Power Lesson for Men!

it fights free radical damage!  Particularly men who consume lycopene-rich foods have an 82% lower rate of prostate cancers! Lycopene also builds healthy hearts, while the pectin in grapefruits inhibits arteriosclerosis, and radically (and quickly!) lowers bad cholesterol (called low-density lipoprotein, or LDL).  (see the footnotes!!)

And you thought grapefruits were only good for weight loss!

Speaking of Weight Loss . . .

Grapefruit & Your Metabolism

Most of us know that grapefruit, like other acidic foods, is an excellent appetite suppressant.

What you may not know is that studies have concluded that for those with metabolic syndrome (a combination of obesity, type 2 diabetes, and hypertension) may experience significantly greater weight loss by including the fruit in their diet program. One researcher went on the record, stating: “Half of a fresh grapefruit eaten before meals was associated with significant weight loss. [And,] Insulin resistance was improved.”

Here’s what’s funny: from all the research I did I don’t believe scientists actually know why consuming the fruit before a meal is associated with weight loss, but it was convincing enough to the medical researchers to recommend grapefruit as a significant part of a weight reduction diet!

Here’s another thing: eating grapefruit may lower the risk of kidney stones! (to get fancy, drinking grapefruit juice ingestion increased oxalate excretion — which lowers the reoccurrence rate of kidney stones).

 So, if you want to get fast results by adding a food to your diet, grapefruit may be just the food you’ve been looking for!  

Warning: Grapefruit Upsets Absorption of Pharmaceuticals

In the ‘70s researchers discovered that grapefruit juice inhibits a digestive enzyme (called CYP3A4), from breaking down certain medications (particularly Lipator and Plendil) in the digestive track. In other words, the dugs do not break-down quickly, resulting in persistent high levels of these drugs in a person’s blood serum.

Interestingly, it accelerates the elimination of Allegra from the body (making a dosage less effective). The good news is that these are well-known issues in the medical world, and any drug you purchase from a pharmacy (in the United States) should include a warning label about such interactions.

More Grapefruit Fun Facts

  • It’s 92% water!  Great for quenching thirst and hydration.
  • The juice contains natural quinine, which naturally fights malaria, as well as lupus and arthritis. In some societies, the quinine is extracted from the fruit to treat diseases by boiling a quarter of a fruit and straining the pulp.
  • The juice reportedly fights hepatitis C, repairs DNA in prostate-cancer cells and may prevent high blood cholesterol, and diabetes.
  • Its pith is fiber-rich, which helps reduce colon cancer rates. 

Here’s Where YOU Can Help, Dear Reader . . . become a health detective  🙂

For two years, I’ve scoured the internet seeking sources that can back up the health and benefit claims of fruits, vegetables, and supplements (sometimes called “boost”).  

In the chart below are the health claims I and others have discovered about grapefruit. Where you see a footnote, you’ll find a link to the source.  If there is not a footnote, then that means that the specific health claim is made, but neither I or anyone I know has been able to locate sources of research or anecdote to backup the claim.

So, if you are aware of a direct source of research or anecdotes to back up the claims, please post them in the comments.  I’ll check them out and if they meet our standards, I’ll make sure that they’re included in the next edition of the blog and give you a shout-out!

Reported Health Benefit Claims of Grapefruit:

Anti-inflammatory [7]

Improves digestive health [5]

Antioxidant [2][9][11]

Increases energy
Prevents asthma

Prevents heart attack [2][10]

Prevents arthritis

Prevents insomia

Prevents some forms of cancer [5][7][8]

Prevents kidney stones [8]

Improves cardiovascular health [3][5][6]

Prevents sore throat

Lowers cholesterol [10]

Reduces risk of stroke [5][7]

Strengthens immune system [7][8]

Prevents tumors

Prevents diabetes [4][6]

Promotes weight loss [1][3][5][7][8]

Sources: t%20and%20pancreatitis