Grapefruit is a big round citrus fruit with a bitter yellow skin and a juicy rather tart pale yellow, pink, or reddish pulp. [1]

Grapefruit History

The Start

America is the world’s biggest consumer of grapefruit, with large commercial groves in Arizona, California, Florida and Texas. However the grapefruit’s ancestor, the pummelo (likewise pomelo or shaddock), comes from far away– it’s belonging to Malaysia and Indonesia. Pummelo seeds were brought from the East Indies to the West Indies in 1693 by an English ship leader. The grapefruit may have been a horticultural accident or a deliberate hybridization between the pummelo and the orange. The original grapefruit was about the size of an orange. It was initially called both “forbidden fruit,” and the “smaller sized shaddock,” after Captain Shaddock, who brought the seeds.

Grapefruit Pertains To America

The grapefruit arrived in the U.S. in 1823, however it was not right away popular; the thick skin was uncommon and an impediment. However the tree thrived, and its name evolved in English based on how it grows: in grapelike clusters. In 1870, the big, golden clusters on a tree he passed attracted John A. MacDonald, who lived in Orange County, Florida. MacDonald developed the very first grapefruit nursery. Florida’s first shipment of grapefruits to New york city and Philadelphia, in 1885, produced interest and assisted create the industrial grapefruit industry. By the late 1800s, grapefruit trees were being cultivated in the southern part of Texas; by 1910 grapefruit had actually prospered in the Rio Grande Valley of Texas, in addition to in Arizona and California. The pink grapefruit and other varieties were developed. In Jamaica, the grapefruit was crossbred with the tangerine to produce the ugli (which is indeed ugly), a sweeter fruit that the residents prefer. In 1929 a Texas citrus grower discovered an altered red grapefruit growing on a pink grapefruit tree, which became the Ruby Red cultivar. Clusters growing like grapes earned grapefruit its name. Grapefruit has actually been a household favorite in the U.S. given that the 1940s. In the U.S., the peak season for grapefruit is October to June; Florida and Texas groves flourish beginning in October, and Arizona and California chime in January to June. Since grapefruits are so popular, they are imported in the off-season. Just like almost all products, industrial growers concentrate on developing fruits that are larger, more consistent in size, more attractive color and with fewer seeds. Regrettably, taste is compromised to achieve more industrial residential or commercial properties. The heirloom varieties were far more delicious than today’s cultivars. If you can find any, get them up. [2]


The grapefruit tree grows to be as big and energetic as an orange tree; a fully grown tree might be from 4.5 to 6 metres (15 to 20 feet) high. The foliage is extremely dense, with leaves dark and glossy green and nearly glabrous (without plant hairs). Flowers are large and white, borne singly or in clusters in the axils of the leaves. Many varieties are yellow when ripe. The fruit varies from 100 to 150 mm (4 to 6 inches) in size, its size relying on the variety and upon growing conditions. Its pulp is typically light yellow-colored, tender, and very full of juice, with an unique slightly acid flavour. A number of varieties have pink or red pulp. [3]

Grapefruit Nutrition Information

Half grapefruit measuring approximately 3 3/4″ in diameter (123g) provides 52 calories, 0.9 g of protein, 13.2 g of carbs, and 0.2 g of fat. Grapefruits are an exceptional source of vitamin C and vitamin A. The following nutrition info is supplied by the USDA.1.

  • Calories: 52
  • Fat: 0.2 g
  • Salt: 0mg
  • Carbohydrates: 13.2 g
  • Fiber: 2g
  • Sugars: 8.5 g
  • Protein: 0.9 g
  • Vitamin C: 38.4 mg
  • Vitamin A: 71.3 mcg


There are about 13 grams of carbs in a half grapefruit. Most of the carbohydrate comes from naturally happening sugar (8.5 g). There are also 2 grams of fiber in a half grapefruit.

The glycemic load of half a grapefruit (with no sugarcoated or honey) is approximated to be 4.


There is practically no fat in grapefruit. One half of a medium grapefruit has approximately 0.2 g of fat.


There is less than one gram of protein in half a grapefruit.

Vitamins and Minerals

Grapefruit is an outstanding source of vitamin C, supplying nearly 64% of your daily requirements in a single serving. It’s likewise an outstanding source of beta carotene (which the body converts to vitamin A), providing 28% of your everyday needs.

Grapefruit provides percentages of certain minerals, such as potassium, calcium, and magnesium. [4]

17 Health Benefits of Grapefruit according to Nutritionists

Grapefruit contains a great deal of water

At about 92% water, grapefruit has among the highest water contents of any fruit. That makes it helpful for general health.

” All of our body systems and procedure … need water,” Wesley Delbridge, RD, a Phoenix-based dietitian, informs Health. “Correct hydration makes your body more efficient in everything you’re doing.”.

About 20% of your everyday fluid intake in fact originates from food. So include some grapefruit to get closer to your everyday water goal and select the heavier of two fruits of equal size: It has more juice.

Grapefruit might speed weight-loss

A number of studies have actually shown that people who eat half a fresh grapefruit or beverage grapefruit juice before each meal lose more weight than individuals who do not.

Not all research studies have revealed the same weight-loss benefit and scientists do not understand if the result seen in the research studies was specifically due to grapefruit– or filling up on a low-calorie food in general– but vegetables and fruits should always belong to your method to lose or maintain weight.

What is 100% ironclad fact: Grapefruit delivers a great deal of nutrition and water for very few calories: there are just 39 calories in one half of a grapefruit. So it’s a great choice if you wish to improve your intake of high nutrient, low calorie foods.

Even the pith is good for you

When you peel away the outer layer of a grapefruit, you may be lured to pick off the white flesh that is in between you and the juicy fruit, and throw it away. This things is called pith. Don’t do it.

” That [pith] is really abundant in anti-oxidants and nutrients and also soluble fiber which is going to help you feel fuller and effect your glucose responses,” states Delbridge.

While the pith of grapefruit can have more of a bitter taste than say, oranges, it’s worth consuming in addition to the fruit (if you can). Fiber is a good thing, and can assist lower blood glucose, cholesterol, and perhaps even colon cancer danger.

Grapefruit can assist lower “bad” cholesterol

A grapefruit a day might assist lower “bad” LDL cholesterol levels by as much as 15.5%, according to a 2006 research study in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. In the study, researchers took a look at 57 patients ages 39 to 72 who had high cholesterol and had undergone bypass surgery for heart difficulty. For one month, some ate a grapefruit everyday (either red or white) while others, the control group, did not. Grapefruit eaters, particularly those consuming red, had a drop in bad cholesterol, while the control group did not.

This is great news for your heart. LDL cholesterol is a type of fat that can develop in your arteries and raise the danger for cardiovascular disease and stroke. However if you are taking a cholesterol-lowering drug, do not add a grapefruit for additional impact– the FDA released a caution in 2012 about interactions with such medications.

Grapefruit might assist pump up your immune system

That’s because of the significant dosage of vitamins A and C in each serving. “Vitamin C and A are huge as far as immune enhancing,” states Delbridge.

Some research indicates that not having enough vitamin C (and other micronutrients) may really harm your body immune system, specifically if you’re elderly.

Grapefruit may not prevent a cold but the vitamins inside may decrease your suffering or perhaps the period of a cold.

” There’s nothing else you can do for a cold so why not?” says Ann Marie Chiasson, MD, assistant director of the Fellowship in Integrative Medication at the University Of Arizona College Of Medication in Tucson.

Grapefruit can lower triglyceride levels

There’s another reason grapefruit can be helpful for your heart: It reduces levels of triglycerides, another kind of fat– like “bad” LDL cholesterol– which can quickly clog up your arteries.

The very same study that discovered that including one grapefruit a day lowered cholesterol levels also found that this basic everyday regimen lowered triglycerides– by as much as 27%. This remained in clients who already had coronary artery disease and so were at high threat for heart attacks and other complications.

Grapefruit can decrease high blood pressure

” Grapefruit has actually got some information that it reduces systolic blood pressure, not by a lot– it’s usually about 5 points– however there’s absolutely great information,” says Chiasson. And for the 70 million Americans who have hypertension, any drop in blood pressure is a great drop.

The effect on high blood pressure might be due to grapefruit’s high potassium levels. Potassium neutralizes the negative results of salt. (Here are 15 foods that are high in potassium.).

However once again, do not eat grapefruit if you are currently taking a blood-pressure reducing drug. Certain ones, such as Procardia and Adalat CC (both are from the generic nifedipine), can be hazardous when integrated with grapefruit, according to the FDA.

The redder, the better

All the grapefruit colors are packed with goodness, vitamins, and nutrients but the red and pink ones included a little extra.

” They have a greater antioxidant level, specifically beta carotene,” states Delbridge. “They likewise have lycopene, another antioxidant.”.

Lycopene is among a group of carotenoids or pigments that provides hued grapefruit (and other vegetables and fruits) their color. Consuming diets abundant in carotenoids might lower the risk of heart disease and some cancers.

Anti-oxidants in general may play an essential function in avoiding cancer.

Grapefruit might assist control blood sugar

Grapefruit likewise has a low glycemic index (GI), around 25, which implies it does not raise blood glucose as rapidly or as much as high-GI foods like white bagel (72) and even a banana (48) or watermelon (72 ). (The greatest GI rating is 100.).

A 2006 research study published in the Journal of Medicinal Food, discovered that people who consumed grapefruit (juice or half a fruit) before a meal had a lower spike in insulin 2 hours behind those taking a placebo, and fresh grapefruit was associated with less insulin resistance. All 91 clients in the 12-week study were overweight, but they did not always have type 2 diabetes.

While the results are guaranteeing in those without diabetes, blood-sugar responses to food can vary extensively, so if you have actually been detected with type 2 diabetes, test your blood sugar after consuming grapefruit to make sure it can be part of your healthy eating plan.

The fruit is better than the juice

Grapefruit juice has a lot of benefits, however the standard fruit itself is going to offer you more bang for your buck when it concerns nutrition and health advantages.

” When you take juice, you’re getting a few of the nutrients but you’re losing all the fiber,” states Delbridge. “Grapefruit juice is great however at the end of the day, the whole fruit has pectin and skin and all the parts of it.”.

Grapefruit juice can also surge your blood sugar level more than the fruit itself. If you select juice of any kind, Delbridge suggests not drinking more than 6 ounces a day and going only for 100% juice products that do not have sugarcoated.

Grapefruit may speed injury recovery

Vitamin C assists form healthy scar tissue and new blood vessels, both of which aid return your body to a healthy state. A grapefruit includes about 72 mg of vitamin C, which is 120% of the day-to-day worth.

Vitamin C accelerate injury healing post surgically,” states Chiasson. “I tell individuals to take 500 milligrams of vitamin C before they go into surgery.”.

Always ask your medical professional prior to adding vitamins, minerals, or any natural supplements to your day-to-day program, specifically if you will have surgical treatment. In this case, that chooses grapefruit too, offered its ability to affect the metabolic process of specific drugs.

Grapefruit might even assist avoid cancer

A big study conducted in Japan found that individuals who consumed citrus (consisting of grapefruit) throughout the week had a lower risk of developing cancer, particularly prostate and pancreatic, compared to the overall group of participants.

The effect was enhanced among those who likewise consumed a lot green tea.

The authors hypothesize that substances in citrus fruits reduce swelling and stop cancer cells from multiplying. They may also assist fix harmed DNA, which contributes to the advancement of growths.

The fiber in grapefruit might likewise assist avoid colorectal cancer while fruits high in vitamin C and beta-carotene, which remains in pink and red grapefruit, may decrease the threat of esophageal cancer.

They can be saved in your fridge, or on the shelf

Grapefruit can be stored in your fridge for as long as 3 weeks however they release their finest taste when kept at room temperature level. If you plan to eat them within a week, leave them on a counter or table.

There’s an added benefit to keeping them in plain view.

” The increased presence helps you advise yourself that you need to consume them,” states Delbridge. “Studies show that when you put vegetables and fruits out in a bowl or common location of your home, you will consume more.”.

If you don’t believe you will eat the grapefruit for 2 or 3 weeks, tuck them in the refrigerator but ensure they’re at space temperature level before you actually dig in. This will give you optimal flavor.

You can make a meal out of grapefruit

Grapefruit is frequently connected with breakfast, however don’t let that limit your imagination.

Grapefruit is likewise super in salads and with fish or chicken. In fact, it’s best when paired with protein and a little fat, like a handful of walnuts.

” If it’s paired with proteins and fats, it will delay your gastric emptying so you’ll feel complete longer,” says Delbridge. The fiber, too, keeps you feeling fuller longer.

Grapefruit may have more vitamin A than an orange

Half of one grapefruit includes 28% of your everyday worth of vitamin A (based upon a 2000-calorie everyday intake), or even more than the 4% in oranges, states Delbridge. This first vitamin in the alphabet is good for your eyes, not to mention your heart, lungs, kidneys and other organs.

What’s more, you likewise get 64% of your vitamin C, 8% of your fiber, a bit of calcium (3%) and iron (1%), and you start to comprehend why it’s called a superfood. (For more contrasts, check out “12 Foods That Have More Vitamin C Than an Orange.”) Why consume a half a grapefruit when you can consume a whole one?

You can consume it in beer form

If you find the fruit itself to be too tart, try a grapefruit-flavored beverage: There are a bunch of products– including grapefruit-flavored beer– that might be more palatable to you.

Due to the fact that citrus sets well with beer, there are plenty of orange and lemon flavored beers, however grapefruit is the a more recent flavor in the brewing world: A few examples include Pink Fuzz, Grapefruit Shandy, and Turtle Power Grapefruit Pale Ale.

The fragrance alone can give you a boost

Citrus aromas are ending up being more popular in aromatherapy for a reason. “Citrus is actually fantastic for increased energy and vitality,” states Chiasson. “It will wake individuals up.”.

Not all aromatherapy is breathed in. You can also rub a vital oil on your skin, which enables you to feel it and inhale it at the same time. Grapefruit aromatherapy might even serve as a natural skin toner, states Chiasson. [5]

How to Prepare Grapefruit

People usually delight in grapefruit on its own rather than in recipes or meals.

To eat a fresh grapefruit, very first cut the fruit in half. Then, using a spoon, dig the fleshy triangles of fruit out of the rind, preventing the bitter walls nestled in between littles fruit. Grapefruit can have a sharp, tasty taste to it– sprinkling a little sugar on it can cut the bite and make it taste much better.

For other methods to add grapefruit into your diet plan, think about:.

  1. Freezing grapefruit portions and adding them into smoothies
  2. Making grapefruit salsa as an accompaniment for fish
  3. Adding grapefruit to a salad as a healthy option to salad dressing
  4. Making a quinoa bowl with grapefruit and avocado

Dosage of grapefruit

There is no common dose.

More than 4 glasses juice each day for pharmacologic effects, or 1-9 glasses daily, or 240 ml of double-strength juice twice daily.

Dosing Factors to consider– Ought To be Offered as Follows:.

Ventricular and Supraventricular Arrhythmias.

Betapace or Sorine: 80 mg orally every 12 hours at first; increased as required to 120-160 mg every 12 hours (2-3 days between increments).

Intravenous (alternative to oral): 75 mg over 5 hour every 12 hours initially; changed if required (on basis of tracking of scientific effectiveness, quarterly interval, and adverse effects) every 3 days; not to surpass 150 mg every 12 hours. [7]

How grapefruit juice can disrupt medications

With a lot of drugs that are affected by grapefruit juice, “the juice lets more of the drug go into the blood,” says Shiew Mei Huang, Ph.D., of the FDA. “When there is too much drug in the blood, you may have more negative effects.”.

For instance, if you consume a lot of grapefruit juice while taking specific statin drugs to lower cholesterol, excessive of the drug might stay in your body, increasing your risk for liver and muscle damage that can result in kidney failure.

Many drugs are broken down (metabolized) with the help of a crucial enzyme called CYP3A4 in the small intestine. Grapefruit juice can obstruct the action of digestive CYP3A4, so instead of being metabolized, more of the drug gets in the blood and remains in the body longer. The result: too much drug in your body.

The quantity of the CYP3A4 enzyme in the intestine varies from person to person. Some individuals have a lot of this enzyme and others simply a little. So grapefruit juice may impact individuals in a different way even when they take the exact same drug.

Although scientists have known for several years that grapefruit juice can cause excessive of specific drugs in the body, more current studies have actually discovered that the juice has the opposite result on a few other drugs.

” Grapefruit juice can trigger less fexofenadine to enter the blood,” reducing how well the drug works, Huang says. Fexofenadine (brand name Allegra) is available as both prescription and OTC to relieve signs of seasonal allergic reactions. Fexofenadine might also not work as well if taken with orange or apple juice, so the drug label says, “Do not take with fruit juices.”.

Why this opposite result? Instead of altering metabolism, grapefruit juice can impact proteins in the body referred to as drug transporters, some of which help move a drug into our cells for absorption. As a result, less of the drug goes into the blood and the drug might not work also, Huang says.

How Grapefruit Juice Impacts Some Drugs

When drugs are swallowed, they may be broken down (metabolized) by enzymes and/or taken in utilizing transporters in cells found in the small intestine. Grapefruit juice can cause problems with these enzymes and transporters, triggering too much or insufficient drug in the body.

Some drugs, like particular statins utilized to lower cholesterol, are broken down by enzymes. As revealed above, grapefruit juice can block the action of these enzymes, increasing the quantity of drug in the body and might cause more side effects.

Other drugs, like fexofenadine, are moved by transporters into the body’s cells. As revealed above, grapefruit juice can obstruct the action of transporters, reducing the amount of drug in the body and might cause the drug to not work too. [8]

What side effects are possible?

Side effects can vary based upon the connecting drug and possible adverse effects.

Adverse effects can vary from unusual heart rhythms, stomach bleeding, muscle pain, muscle breakdown, kidney damage, low blood pressure, trouble breathing, sedation, and lightheadedness.

Other reactions may take place– it depends upon the drug and the levels of the drug in the blood.

If you have been alerted about a possible drug interaction with grapefruit, ask your healthcare provider to describe the possible adverse effects and learn how to recognize it. [9]
Grapefruit’s perpetrator chemical does not interact directly with your pills. Instead, it binds to an enzyme in your digestive tract called CYP3A4, which reduces the absorption of specific medications. When grapefruit juice obstructs the enzyme, it’s simpler for the medication to pass from your gut to your blood stream. Blood levels will increase faster and higher than regular, and in many cases the unusually high levels can be unsafe. [10]


Grapefruit disrupts proteins in the small intestine and liver that usually break down lots of medications.

Eating grapefruit or drinking grapefruit juice while taking these medications can lead to higher levels of them in your blood– and more side effects.

With some drugs, with even small amounts of grapefruit can trigger severe adverse effects. Therefore, the combination ought to be prevented.

Your drug store may mark these drugs with a grapefruit interaction warning.

Make sure your doctor and pharmacist understand if you regularly consume grapefruit. They can help you decide whether it’s safe to consume it while on specific medications. [11]


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