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23 Major Health Benefits of Grapefruit

Grapefruit is a citrus fruit that grows on the subtropical citrus plant of the same name. It is a hybrid plant that originated in Barbados by an accidental cross between the sweet orange and the Pomelo. Grapefruit is a good source of a number of nutrients like vitamins,minerals,antioxidants, flavonoids,dietary fibers etc. and the presence of these compounds make them very beneficial for our health. In this article, we will know about the major health benefits of grapefruit but first, let’s take a look at below mentioned nutrition chart of grapefruit.

Nutrition Chart of Grapefruit

Nutrition Chart of Grapefruit
Source-USDA

Health Benefits of Grapefruit

Health Benefits of Grapefruit
source-pixabay.com

(1) Aids In Weight Loss

If you are on a weight loss regime then it will be very beneficial for you to add grapefruit to your diet. This is because regular and moderate consumption of grapefruit is very beneficial for weight loss. This benefit of grapefruit is mainly because of the high fiber and high water content present in it.

The presence of high fiber and high water content make us feel fuller for a long time and decrease our urge to eat again and again. This, in turn, controls overeating which is a major cause of obesity.Not just eating but even the smell of grapefruit helps in controlling overeating as it stimulates cholecystokinin ( a hormone that regulates digestive juices) and reduces the feeling of hunger.

Grapefruit is a low-calorie fruit and eating 100 grams of grapefruit provides only 42 calories of energy which is a good thing during our weight loss regime.

As per a study called “Grapefruit Diet” conducted by Dr. Ken Fujioka of Scripps Clinic, it was found that group of  obese men and women who had consumed grapefruit juice (along with placebo capsules)  for a period of 12 weeks had lost the most weight in comparison to the other groups .

On an average, the group which was taking fresh grapefruit had lost around 3.52 pounds, the group which was taking grapefruit juice had lost around 3.52 pounds, the group which was on grapefruit capsule had lost 2.42 pounds and finally the group which was placebo capsules had lost 0.66 pounds.

(2) Reduces The Risk Of Influenza

Consuming grapefruit on a regular and moderate basis is also beneficial for reducing the risk of influenza and also acts as a valuable remedy for the same. This benefit of grapefruit is mainly because of the presence of a flavonoid called “Naringin” in it.

Naringin is an important essence that tones up our digestive system, is a powerful antioxidant that also possess antiviral,antifungal,anticancer, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It helps in minimizing the acidity in our system, makes our immune system stronger and thus protects against influenza and other serious health issues.

(3) Effective Against Malaria

Mosquitoes are so tiny but the damage they can do on our health can be so big that we can’t even imagine. Although mosquitoes can cause a number of diseases but one of the most common and infamous diseases is Malaria. Malaria is an infectious disease which affects millions of people all over the world.

As per a 2015 report published by World health Organization (WHO) , nearly half of the world’s population are at a risk of Malaria and in 2015 alone there were about 214 million cases of Malaria and about 438,000 people bid goodbye to the world because of malaria.

Grapefruit can help in case of malaria too,  and eating grapefruit or drinking grapefruit juice on a regular basis ( but in moderation) is very beneficial for helping in the treatment of malaria because of the Quinine present in it. Quinine is an alkaloid which is well known for the treatment of malaria, as well as lupus,arthritis, and nocturnal leg cramps. The best way to extract quinine from grapefruit is to boil a quarter of peeled grapefruit and then straining the pulp.

(4) Helps In Recovering From Fever

Suffering from fever ? No worry, grapefruit is here to the rescue. Eating grapefruit or drinking grapefruit juice during fever helps in quickly recovering from the same. Grapefruit reduces the burning sensation experienced by the patient when the body reaches a high temperature.

Grapefruit also helps in making our immune system stronger and reduces the risk of common cold and other common illness. These benefits of grapefruit are mainly due to the presence of Vitamin C ( an antioxidant) in it. Vitamin C helps in making our immune system stronger as it fights with the free radicals of our body, stabilizes them and thus prevents them from causing oxidative damage to our body.

Grapefruit is also an excellent way to keep us well hydrated ( around 91 percent of grapefruit’s volume is water , source ) which helps a lot in the treatment of fever. In general, we don’t like drinking water during fever but drinking water is one of the best ways to combat fever. (source)

(5) Helps In Tackling Fatigue

Everyone wants to stay alert and energetic all the time but practically this is not at all possible and in fact we all have experienced fatigue at least once in our life. But, we all know that this is not possible. There are many times when we experience fatigue because of our routine work which can sometimes be quite boring. Eating grapefruit on a regular basis or drinking grapefruit juice helps in providing refreshment and is a wonderful way to tackle fatigue.

For this, an equal amount of grapefruit juice and lemon juice are mixed together. This juice is not only delicious but is also very refreshing and is a good way to boost our energy level. This  benefit of grapefruit juice is mainly due to the presence of Nootkatone in it. Nootkatone activates AMPK ( an enzyme which plays an important role in cellular energy homeostasis) and improves the energy metabolism in our body. This activity increases our endurance and energy, helps in weight loss and also reduces the risk of diabetes.

(6) Provides Relief From Indigestion

Grapefruit is very good for our stomach and is very beneficial for providing relief from the digestive problems like indigestion etc. This benefit of grapefruit is mainly because of the ability of grapefruit to improve the flow of digestive juices in our stomach. It is lighter on our stomach ( in comparison to other food) and thus helps in easing the heat and irritation experienced by the stomach. By doing so, it helps in providing immediate relief from indigestion.

(7) Beneficial For Controlling Insomnia

Sleep is like a magic and irrespective of whether we want it or not but most of us sleep almost every day. Sleep is must for our body as it is the time when to get some rest, and our brain and body works together for various biological and biochemical activities. However, there are many people who deal with Insomnia and find it difficult to sleep. Insomnia is no joke and some of the major side effects of sleep deprivation are increased risk of high blood pressure, risk of Type-2 diabetes, cardiovascular problems, weight gain, depression, weaken immune system, moodiness, hallucination, memory problems, cognitive dysfunction etc. (source)

Eating grapefruit or drinking grapefruit juice ( before going to bed ) on a regular and moderate basis is very beneficial for controlling Insomnia. This benefit of grapefruit is mainly because of the presence of Tryptophan in grapefruits. This is the same chemical which makes us sleepy after eating heavy meal. Consuming grapefruit or grapefruit juice promotes healthy sleep and also aids in providing relief from the irritating and unwanted symptoms of Insomnia.

Suggested Read11 Wonderful Beauty Benefits of Grapefruit For Skin And Hair

(8) Good For People Suffering From Diabetes

If you are suffering from diabetes then grapefruit is very beneficial for you and you can safely add it to your food plate. Intake of grapefruit on a regular and moderate basis aids in reducing level of starch in our body and thus helps in regulating blood sugar flow in our body.

In addition to this, grapefruit is also a good source of dietary fibers which plays an important role in regulating blood sugar level of our body as it slows down the rate at which sugar is absorbed into the bloodstream. The glycemic index of grapefruit is 25 which is considered as low and is an indicator that eating grapefruit will not cause a sudden spike in the blood glucose level of our body.

(9) Provides Relief From Acidity

Acidity is a common digestive problem that we all experience every now and then. There could be various reason for acidity but the most common reasons are the unhealthy lifestyle, eating too much spicy food etc. Grapefruit is here to the rescue again. Drinking fresh grapefruit juice provides relief from the acidity as it creates an alkaline reaction.

Grapefruit is also a good source of citric acid which is already present in our body. Eating grapefruit increases the effect of alkalinity reaction in our body and thus helps in preventing acid formation and provides relief from acidity and other associated problems like heartburn, dyspepsia, gastric inflammation etc.  (source) .

(10) Provides Relief From Constipation

Grapefruit is very good for our stomach and we have already seen how it can help in providing relief from indigestion and acidity. It should be noted that digestive benefits of grapefruit don’t end here and it is also beneficial for providing relief from constipation.

Eating grapefruit on a regular ( but in moderation) basis or drinking a freshly squeezed grapefruit juice in the morning acts as wonderful remedy against constipation. This benefit of grapefruit is mainly because of the presence of dietary fibers in it.

These dietary fibers stimulate digestive juices in our body and play an important role in regulating the bowel movement of our boy. By regulating the bowel movement, it ensures smooth elimination of waste out of our body and thus provides relief from constipation.

(11) Relieves Flatulence

Another important digestive health benefit of grapefruit is its ability to providing relief from flatulence. For this, take ten to 20 drops of grapefruit juice before all the three meals of the day. Grapefruit juice works as a probiotic and digestive enzyme which provide relief from flatulence and stomach discomfort.

Although further research needs to be done on the subject but it is believed that this benefit of grapefruit is mainly because of the flavonoids present in citrus fruit present in them.

(12) Helps In Treating Urinary Disorders

Grapefruit is a good source of potassium and vitamin C, and the presence of these compounds in grapefruit makes them very beneficial for the treatment of dangerously reduced urination which is often caused by liver,kidney or cardiovascular problems.

Being a vasodilator, potassium also helps in reducing the risk of high blood pressure and other cardiovascular problems like heart attack and strokes. This is because potassium relaxes our blood vessels and arteries.

Increased potassium level also improves our cognitive health as it improves the flow of blood and oxygen to the brain.

(13) Improves Our Cardiovascular Health

Eating citrus fruits like grapefruit on a regular and moderate basis is good for our heart and is very beneficial for reducing the risk of cardiovascular problems like heart attack, stroke, irregular heartbeat, atherosclerosis etc. These benefits of grapefruit are mainly because of the presence of compounds like Vitamin C, potassium, dietary fibers etc. in it.

Vitamin C is an antioxidant that fights with the free radicals of our body, stabilizes them and prevents our cardiovascular system from oxidative damage. Potassium is a vasodilator which relaxes our blood vessels and arteries and ensures smooth circulation of blood.

It also plays an important role in reducing the risk of high blood pressure or hypertension. In addition to this, grapefruit is also a good source of dietary fiber which helps in regulating cholesterol level of our body and thus  keeps our cardiovascular system healthy.

(14) Reduces The Risk Of High Blood Pressure Or Hypertension

Grapefruit is very beneficial for reducing the risk of high blood pressure or hypertension. This benefit of grapefruit is mainly because of  the presence of  important mineral “Potassium” in it.  Potassium is a natural vasodilator which relaxes our blood vessels and arteries and ensures smooth blood circulation in our body and thus reduces the risk of hypertension.High potassium intake also provides protection against loss of muscle mass, preserve bone density and reduces the risk of kidney stones formation.

In a study, it was found that those who consume around 4069 mg of potassium per day are at a 49 % lower risk of death from ischemic heart disease in comparison to those who only consume 1000 mg of potassium per day. High blood pressure is bad for our cardiovascular health too as it increases the risk of heart attack, heart stroke, irregular heartbeat, atherosclerosis etc.

By regulating high blood pressure, potassium also helps in keeping our heart healthy. In addition to the potassium, other compounds like dietary fibers, vitamin C etc. also plays an important role in maintaining good heart health.

Suggested Read- 10 Major Side Effects of Eating Too Many Grapefruits

(15) Reduces The Risk Of Various Types Of Cancer(s)

Eating grapefruit or drinking grapefruit juice on a regular basis is very beneficial for reducing the risk of various types of cancers like colon cancer, prostate cancer,esophageal cancer etc. This benefit of grapefruit is mainly because of the presence of antioxidants like Vitamin C, Lycopene, and beta-carotene in it.

These antioxidants fight with the free radicals of our body, stabilizes them and thus prevents them from causing oxidative damage to our body. Free radicals are bad for our health as they are the unstabilized ions that get formed in our body mainly during the oxidation process.

As they are unstabilized ions to they get stabilized by stealing electrons from the molecules of our body cells and while doing so they harm them. Antioxidants react with them and stabilizes them and thus prevents our body cells from damage.

(16) Keep Us Hydrated

Water plays an important role in our body and this can be understood from the fact that our body is made up of around 60 percent water, our brain and heart are composed of 73 percent water, 83 percent of our lungs is water. In fact, even our bones are watery ( around 31 percent) (source). Water is needed by our body for almost every cellular activity and for this reason it is important for us to make sure that we stay well hydrated.

Eating grapefruit is one of the best ways to keep us hydrated as it is made up of around 91% water which makes it one of the most hydrating fruits in the world. It keep us well hydrated also maintains electrolyte balance in our body.

(17) Reduces The Risk of Asthma

There are certain nutrients that reduce the risk of development of asthma and such nutrient is Vitamin C. Grapefruit is a good source of vitamin C which means that those who consume grapefruit or drink freshly squeezed grapefruit juice are at a lower risk of suffering from asthma.

(18) Make Our Immune System Stronger

Our Immune system plays an important role in keeping us healthy as it prevents foreign invaders like bacteria and viruses from entering our body and even if they somehow enter our body, it is the immune system that fights with them and makes us healthy again. Immune system do its best to keep us healthy however the free radicals of our body constantly harm our body cells including the immune system and reduces its ability.

Eating grapefruit on a regular basis plays an important role in improving the strength of our immune system. This is because grapefruits are good source of antioxidants like Vitamin C which reacts with the free radicals ( unstabilized ions) of our body stabilizes them and thus prevents them from causing oxidative damage to our body ( and the immune system too ).

By preventing oxidative damage, it not only strengthens our immune system but also reduces the risk of premature aging, cancer, cardiovascular problems etc.

(19) Detoxifies Liver

Grapefruit is very beneficial for our liver as regular consumption of grapefruit or drinking freshly squeezed grapefruit juice  aids the liver in removing harmful toxins out of the body.

It detoxifies our liver which improves the overall health and helps in reducing the symptoms of chronic conditions like depression, stiff muscles, chronic headaches etc. It is very important for us to make sure that toxins get eliminated from  our body without fail and grapefruit help in doing the same.

(20) Reduces Bad Cholesterol

Another important health benefits of grapefruit are its ability to reduce bad cholesterol which in turn is associated with maintaining good cardiovascular health.

As per some studies, it has been found that regular consumption of grapefruit reduces the level of bad cholesterol or LDL cholesterol by around 15 percent and it also reduces the level of Triglycerides ( another form of bad cholesterol ) around 17 percent.

LDL cholesterol or bad cholesterol is considered bad for our heart as it clogs up arteries and makes them less flexible. This increases the risk of various cardiovascular problems like heart attack, heart stroke, atherosclerosis etc. ( source ).

(21) Prevents Gum Diseases

Grapefruit is good for our gums too and it has been found that eating two grapefruits a day prevents and may even reverse the damage caused by the gum diseases.

This benefit of grapefruit is also because of the antioxidants like Vitamin C in it which stabilizes free radicals of our body. Undiagnosed or untreated gum disease can be fatal for our gum health and can even lead to oral cancer. Gum diseases are bad for our heart too as they can lead to bacteria which causes damage to our heart.

(22) Beneficial During Pregnancy

Pregnant women must ensure that they are eating a well-balanced diet as the food they eat not  provide nourishment to their body but also to the baby developing in their womb. There are certain fruits which play an important role in keeping pregnancy healthy and grapefruit is one such fruit.

It is a good source of Vitamin C and folate content, and both these nutrients are very much needed during the pregnancy stage. Folate is needed as it prevents the babies from the serious birth defects of spinal cord and brain. Vitamin C plays an important role in promoting proper bone growth and helps in maintaining the cell strength in the womb.

(23) Good For Our Eyes

Grapefruit ( particularly pink and red grapefruits) are beneficial for our eyes too because of their high beta-carotene content. Beta-carotene plays an important role in keeping our eyes healthy and improving our vision as our body converts beta-carotene into vitamin A ( a must have vitamin for our eyes).

In addition to this, grapefruit is also a good source of antioxidants like Vitamin C which prevents our eyes from oxidative damage and reduces the risk of age-related macular degeneration. Other antioxidantal compounds like naringenin, lycopene, xanthin, lutein etc. also play an important role in keeping our eyes healthy. To reap these benefits,eat at least one grapefruit a day.

These were some of the major health benefits of grapefruit. Being a good source of nutrients like vitamins,minerals,antioxidants etc. it is benefecial only for our health but also for our skin and hair. Although grapefruit provides a lot of health and beauty benefits, but it is important to eat it in moderation as there are also some side effects of eating too many grapefruits.

Reference(s)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grapefruit

http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/grapefruit.html

http://naturalsociety.com/10-amazing-health-benefits-of-grapefruit/

https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/fruit/health-benefits-of-grapefruit.html

http://www.lifehack.org/articles/lifestyle/10-benefits-grapefruit-you-may-not-know.html

http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/280882.php

http://www.stylecraze.com/articles/amazing-benefits-of-grapefruits-for-skin-and-health/

Disclaimer

The information contained in the post is for general purpose only and shouldn’t be considered as a medical advice or as an alternative to medical advice. Although I’ve tried my best to keep the information contained in this post as accurate and updated as possible, but I make no guarantee of the accurateness of the same.

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