Grapefruit

Background Information: 

  • Varieties include red seedless, pink seedless, or white seedless
  • The redder the flesh, the sweeter the taste and the greater the lycopene
  • So named because they grow hanging in clusters like grapes

Health Benefits: 

  • Could help with weight loss
    • Full of water and fiber which can help curb your appetite
  • May improve insulin resistance
  • Contains lycopene
    • Antioxidant linked to lowering the risk of breast cancer and heart disease

Nutrition Information (1/2 cup): 

  • Calories: 40
  • Protein: 1 gram
  • Fat, Cholesterol, Sodium: 0
  • Carbohydrate: 10 grams
  • Fiber: 1 gram
  • Sugar: 9 grams
  • Vitamin A: 46%
  • Vitamin C: 70%
  • Calcium: 2%

Choose:

  • Find a heavier fruit, it will be juicier
  • Check that it doesn’t have any soft spots
  • Look for a slightly flat end
  • When pressed, the skin should feel springy and have a smooth texture
    • Signs that it isn’t dried out

Store: 

  • Room temperature
    • Away from direct sunlight
    • 1 week
  • Refrigerate
    • In the vegetable bin or cut in a container not made of metal
    • 2-3 weeks

Serve: 

  • Fruit is the juiciest when eaten at room temperature
  • Add to salads

Cook: 

  • Great for grilling, as a spritzer, or in salsa
  • Half, char on a medium-hot grill pan, drizzle with honey

Food & Drug Interactions: 

  • Grapefruit can increase the absorption of some drugs into the bloodstream making them toxic or can interact with the metabolism of the drug making them less potent
  • Examples:
    • Some statin drugs to lower cholesterol, such as Zocor (simvastatin), Lipitor (atorvastatin) and Pravachol (pravastatin)
    • Some blood pressure-lowering drugs, such as Nifediac and Afeditab (both nifedipine)
    • Some organ transplant rejection drugs, such as Sandimmune and Neoral (both cyclosporine)
    • Some anti-anxiety drugs, such as BuSpar (buspirone)
    • Some anti-arrhythmia drugs, such as Cordarone and Nexterone (both amiodarone)
    • Some antihistamines, such as Allegra (fexofenadine)
  • Be sure to speak with your physician or pharmacist as this is not a complete list of drugs

Research:

  • 1 red grapefruit a day can lower the bad cholesterol by 15.5% and triglycerides by 27%
  • Those who ate 1/2 of a grapefruit before meals lost more weight than those who didn’t

References:

  • Bauer, Joy. “Cancer-fighting foods.” Woman’s Day. October 2014. 148.
  • Young, Grace. “Scarlet fever.” Weight Watchers. January/February 2015. 67
  • “Grapefruit, fresh.” (2012, December). Retrieved from http://www.fns.usda.gov/sites/default/files/HHFS_GRAPEFRUIT_FRESH_December2012.pdf
  • Fujioka, K et al. The effects of grapefruit on weight and insulin resistance: relationship to the metabolic syndrome. J Med Food. 2006; ;9(1):49-54. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16579728
  • “Grapefruit juice and medicine may not mix.” (2014, January). Retrieved from http://www.fda.gov/downloads/ForConsumers/ConsumerUpdates/UCM292839.pdf
  • Reistad-Long, Sara. “Healthy Eating Grapefruit.” Better Homes & Gardens. January 2016. 91.
  • Malia, Michelle. “6 Juicy Secrets to Winter Health.” Men’s Health. January/February 2016. 36-37.
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