Grapefruit is a large subtropical citrus fruit generally recognized for its slightly bitter and sour taste. It was first produced in Barbados as a hybrid fruit that resulted from a cross between pomelo and sweet orange.
Nowadays grapefruit is produced in many countries such as South Africa, South of Italy, Texas, Florida and in UAE. Low in calories, high in fibres and phyto-nutrients, grapefruit is a healthy dietary choice.
Grapefruit intake should be avoided when taking certain medications, because of its enzyme binding ability. If you take prescription medications, especially drugs, avoid undesirable interactions by consulting your doctor before eating grapefruit.
Half of a medium pink grapefruit, (3 ¾ in diameter) contains approximately 52 calories, 13 grams of carbohydrate (including 8.5 grams of sugar and 2 grams of dietary fibres), and 1 gram of protein.
Eating half of a grapefruit per day will meet 64% of your vitamin C needs, 28% of vitamin A, 2% of calcium and 2% of magnesium.
Grapefruits also contain small amounts of vitamin E, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, folate, pantothenic acid, potassium, phosphorus, manganese, zinc and copper.
Not only are pink grapefruits high in common vitamins and minerals, they also pack a powerful antioxidant punch with lycopene and beta-carotene along with the phytonutrients limonoids and naringenin.
Fresh pink or red grapefruit contains higher quantities of bioactive compounds and has significantly higher antioxidant potential than white or yellow grapefruit. .
Consuming daily grapefruits will help to lose weight and reduce blood cholesterol and maintain blood pressure and protect heart health
The powerful nutrient combination of fibres, potassium, lycopene, vitamin C and choline in grapefruit all help to maintain a healthy heart.
The addition of fresh red grapefruit to the diet could be beneficial for people with atherosclerosis wanting to lower their high lipid levels, especially triglycerides.
High potassium intakes are also associated with a reduced risk of stroke, protection against loss of muscle mass, preservation of bone mineral density and reduction in the formation of kidney stones
Moreover increasing potassium intake makes it possible to lower blood pressure thanks for its powerful vasodilatation effects.
As an excellent source of the strong antioxidant vitamin C as well as other antioxidants, grapefruit can help combat the formation of free radicals known to cause cancer. Lycopene intake has been linked with a decreased risk of prostate cancer prevention in several studies and foods high in vitamin C and beta-carotene have been shown to lower the risk of esophageal cancer in particular.
Grapefruit, because of its water and fibres content, helps to prevent constipation and promote regularity for a healthy digestive tract.
As one of the most hydrating fruits in the world made up of 91% water (just below watermelon) and full of important electrolytes, grapefruit juice is a refreshing drink, ideal in warm climates.
Anyhow it is better to eat grapefruit rather than drinking its juice, in order to benefit of all the nutrients in the pulp, in particular the rich fibres and calcium.