It should come as no surprise that grapefruit like all citrus is a great source of Vitamin C. However that’s not the only reason why grapefruit is great. It is a great source of fiber, vitamin B6, Vitamin A, and various minerals including calcium and potassium. It is also a great source of phytochemicals, non-essential-nutrients that provide extra health benefits. With so much great stuff in grapefruit, It’s no wonder that it keeps us so healthy.
Eating any fruit or vegetable as a substitute for fatty food will lower your cholesterol. However, eating grapefruit makes your heart particularly strong. This is due to the high levels of vitamin C and –without getting too technical — the flavonoids (a type of phytochemical) found in citrus. To reduce the risk of having a stroke or heart disease eat flavanoids. In even more exciting news, a recent experimental trial found that eating grapefruit improved both insulin resistance and helped the weight loss. In the battle to maintain a healthy heart it’s comforting to know that your diet doesn’t have to consist completely of Cheerios: Score diabetes and heart disease 0 Grapefruit 1.
Cancer has stolen the lives of so many loved ones. What if a slice of grapefruit a day could keep the oncologist away? It has been hypothesized that vitamin C plays a big role in cancer prevention and in certain studies it is shown that phytochemicals may cause anti-tumor activity. The truth is the field of research connecting diet and disease is vast and we have only just scratched the surface. However, we are taking our first steps in exploring this new domain. Already it has been proven that eating grapefruit reduces the risk of getting certain cancers.
Stopping Birth Defects
We all want to keep our kids healthy. During pregnancy is the most important time to eat right. Unfortunately, that’s also the time when our cravings are at their strongest. Few people know how important it is for pregnant women to get enough folate in their diet. So if you are ever faced with a decision between pickles, salsa, and grapefruit — pick grapefruit. It is high in folate. Folate is a water-soluble vitamin commonly found in citrus. Getting enough folate can prevent severe birth defects such as spina bifida. Public health Officials recommend 400 mcg of folate per day for pregnant women. Regularly eating citrus could greatly reduce the risk of birth defects and give more kids a healthy, normal life.
Anemia is unfortunately a very common disease. There are 3 million US cases per year. Consuming citrus which are rich in vitamins can help prevent anaemia and its devastating consequences. Vitamin C can increase the absorption of the iron necessary to make red blood cells and the folate found in citrus helps the body produce those red blood cells which ultimately prevent anaemia. The recommended daily intake of folate is 180 mcg for females and 200 mcg for males, which is about 8 cups of grapefruit juice — if grapefruit was your only source of folate. However folate is available in other foods to such as oranges, cantalope, pumpkin seeds and leafy greens.
Although we typically think of carrots preventing bad eyesight there’s a new food on the scene. Grapefruits are a good source of vitamin A as well as vitamin C. Most cataracts are caused by oxidation on the lens of the eye. So a simple way to prevent cataracts is to eat lots of antioxidants, such as vitamin C. While eating grapefruit doesn’t guarantee you 20/20 vision it can prevent having to get cataract surgery later in life.
Opting Out of Osteoporosis
Being big boned isn’t always bad, it sure beats having osteoporosis. Especially since osteoporosis has no cure. It has been theorized that the antioxidants in grapefruit may prevent osteoporosis later in life. A recent clinical trial using rats has shown a diet with lots of grapefruit can increase bone growth. Research is still being done to find out how eating citrus affects bone density. Preliminary studies have theorized that the citric acid found in fruits like grapefruit has a beneficial effect on bone growth.
Curing Kidney Stones
They say passing a kidney stone is as painful as giving birth. But if you don’t want to test this hypothesis — eat grapefruit. It turns out our favorite fruit can prevent the formation of kidney stones. Most kidney stones are made out of calcium and the citric acid found in citrus breaks down calcium before it can build up into a kidney stone.
Living in Arizona, where a typical summer day is 100-and-something degrees I know a thing or two about dehydration. Dehydration isn’t 100% about how many water bottles you’ve finished off by the end of the day it also comes down to what kind of food you eat. A grapefruit right off the tree is 50% water while grapefruit juice is approximately 90% water which makes it a great way to stay hydrated under the blazing sun.
***Grapefruit in conjunction with medication is not recommended
Despite how wonderful grapefruit is it’s important to be cautious when eating it while taking medication for blood pressure, anti-anxiety, anti-arrhythmia, or organ transplant rejection medications, as well as some antihistamines and statins.
Getting Behind Grapefruit
Grapefruit is a great fruit to include in your diet if for no other reason than it is a whole food. Grapefruit has an astounding number of health benefits. It helps keep your heart healthy and your weight low as well as helping prevent cancer, birth defects, anemia, cataracts, osteoporosis, kidney stones, and dehydration. It is truly amazing how many ailments could be stopped (or at the very least slowed) by the consumption of grapefruit. With so many health benefits it’s no wonder why so many people are happily retired in Florida.