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Grapefruits are subtropical citrus fruits that are commercially grown in Florida, California, and Texas. Known to the science community as Citrus × paradisi, grapefruit has a sweet flavor akin to the orange, though the sweetness is followed by a bitter aftertaste. The best and most common way to enjoy grapefruits is by eating their segments whole or juiced. Like other popular citrus fruits, grapefruits are loaded with immune-boosting vitamin C among other powerful nutrients. Read on to see why you should consider incorporating grapefruit into your diet.
Important Note: Each of the benefits of eating grapefruit noted herein is backed by the most current research at the time of this publication.
Packed With Nutrition
One of the most obvious reasons to add grapefruit to your diet is that it’s loaded with vitamins and minerals. For starters, a single serving of grapefruit contains 64% of the daily recommended intake of vitamin C and 28% of the daily recommended intake of vitamin A. Additionally, grapefruit is rife with potassium, thiamine, folate, and magnesium. Grapefruit has high concentrations of fiber and protein as well. What’s more, grapefruit is packed with powerful antioxidants. Best of all, grapefruit is one of the lowest-calorie fruits; this coupled with its nutrient density means it’s a perfect addition to a well-balanced diet.
General Consensus: 5/5 and here is why. Undoubtedly, grapefruit is loaded with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, each of which contributes to your overall health.
Good for Your Immune System
The most obvious health benefit of consuming grapefruit is that it’s highly beneficial to your immune system. Loaded with vitamin C, grapefruit is fraught with antioxidative properties that fend off harmful free radicals that might otherwise lead to illness. Moreover, vitamin C has been scientifically linked to treating the common cold, so ditch the supplements and eat some delicious grapefruit. Vitamin A is another nutrient found in high concentrations in grapefruit; vitamin A boosts immunity by protecting against inflammation and infections. Lastly, grapefruit contains trace amounts of zinc, copper, vitamin B, and iron, all of which have positive effects on immunity.
General Consensus: 5/5 and here is why. Grapefruit is chock full of powerful nutrients that fight off illness and enhance your immune system.
Supportive of Weight Loss
To begin, a single serving of grapefruit contains just 52 calories and 13 grams of carbohydrates. Better yet, grapefruit is loaded with fiber which creates a feeling of satiety so that you’re less likely to consume unnecessary calories; notably, grapefruit contains 2 grams of fiber per half. Moreover, grapefruit is made up of 88% water making it incredibly hydrating, a factor that contributes to weight loss. Furthermore, one significant study concluded that subjects who ate grapefruit daily experienced a subsequent reduced waist measurement.
General Consensus: 4/5 and here is why. Although grapefruit consumption in and of itself will not produce weight-loss results, when added to your diet, it can certainly help you achieve your goals.
Good for Diabetic Blood Sugar Control
An unexpected benefit of consuming grapefruit is that it has a positive effect on blood sugar levels in diabetics. Specifically, research indicates that eating grapefruit may improve insulin resistance in type-2 diabetics. Insuslin is important to both blood sugar control and metabolism so eating grapefruit could improve their functionality. Essentially, eating grapefruit may better control insulin markers thereby reducing your risk of becoming insulin resistant. One study revealed that subjects who regularly consumed grapefruit at meal time showed more improved insulin control and resistance than those who didn’t eat grapefruit.
General Consensus: 3/5 and here is why. Although the research on this topic isn’t abundant, it’s a promising field; be on the lookout for future studies.
Improves Heart Health
Another possible benefit of including grapefruit in your diet is that doing so may lead to improved heart health. Essentially, grapefruit consumption is thought to remediate risk factors, such as high cholesterol and high blood pressure, that may otherwise lead to cardiovascular disease. In a study of individuals who consumed three servings of grapefruit per day for six weeks, scientists observed drastic reductions in blood pressure levels as well as reduced cholesterol. Researchers believe that it’s grapefruit’s high potassium content that leads to these improvements. Potassium is historically linked to blood pressure management as well as a reduced risk of death from cardiovascular disease. Another facet of grapefruit that may have a positive effect on heart health is its fiber content. Research shows that a fiber-rich diet is connected to healthier blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
General Consensus: 4/5 and here is why. Research indicates that eating foods, such as grapefruit, that are rich in fiber, potassium, and antioxidants have positive overall effects on heart health.
Packed With Antioxidants
There’s no doubt that an antioxidant-rich diet has incredible implications for your overall health. Grapefruit is rife with antioxidative plant compounds that are known to fight harmful free radicals that could lead to chronic illnesses such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Some of the most prevalent antioxidants contained in grapefruit include vitamin C which protects against certain cancer types and heart disease as well as beta-carotene which which can reduce your risk for certain eye diseases and macular degeneration. Moreover, grapefruit is rich in the antioxidant lycopene which is good for inhibiting cancerous tumor growth in addition to flavonones which reduce the risk of heart disease through cholesterol and blood pressure management.
General Consensus: 5/5 and here is why. Grapefruit is an excellent source of powerful antioxidants the likes of which can fight many dangerous diseases.
Good for Skin Health
Grapefruit’s vitamin C content has the ability to protect the skin from sun damage and inflammation. In fact, vitamin C is often noted as an active ingredient in skincare products such as moisturizers and serums. What’s more, vitamin C is integral to the production of collagen which is good for hydration and elasticity of the skin. Lastly, grapefruit contains citric acid, malic acid, and tartaric acid, all of which are featured in skincare products as beneficial to skin texture and elasticity.
General Consensus: 5/5 and here is why. Dozens of studies tout the benefits of vitamin C in skincare products. Therefore, grapefruit is an excellent contributor to skin health.
Unlikely Benefits: Further Research Needed
May Reduce Kidney Stones
General Consensus: 2/5 and here is why. While research indicates that citric acid, which is found in grapefruit, can remediate kidney stones, there are only a few studies that connect grapefruit to this health benefit. More research is needed.