Have a Plant: Fruits & Veggies for Better Health

About The Buzz: Eating Grapefruit = More Nutrients, Healthier Weight for Women?

TheBUZZ Eating Grapefruit (whole or juice) = More Nutrients, Healthier Weight For Women?

WHAT THEY’RE SAYING

Consumption of grapefruit or 100% grapefruit juice is associated with higher intakes of magnesium, vitamin C, potassium, dietary fiber and beta-carotene.1 Among women, consumption of grapefruit at least every other day is also associated with a lower body weight, smaller waist, lower body mass index (BMI), reduced triglyceride levels and increased high-density lipoprotein (HDL) values.

HOW WE KNOW THIS

A study published in 2014 analyzed two 24-hour diet recalls and body measurements for more than 12,700 men and women over the age of 19 who participated in the 2003-2008 NHANES study to determine if they consumed grapefruit or 100% grapefruit juice.1 There were 333 individuals who were considered grapefruit eaters, defined as those who consumed either grapefruit or 100% grapefruit juice at least once over a two-day period. This represented less than 3% of the population. In comparison to non-grapefruit consumers, men and women with diets that included grapefruit were more likely to have:

  • Vitamin C and magnesium levels within the recommended daily intake
  • Greater intake of fiber, potassium and beta-carotene
  • Lower body weight, smaller waist circumference and reduced BMI values (women)
  • Lower triglycerides and C-reactive protein (associated with inflammation) levels, as well as higher HDL (good cholesterol) values (women)
  • A higher intake of whole grains and fruit
  • Lower consumption of added sugars throughout the day in both men and women

Men were found to typically consume 100% grapefruit juice where women on average ate fresh grapefruit. Amounts consumed were equivalent to about ½ a cup of grapefruit juice or 2/3 cup of sections with juice.

OUR ADVICE

This study demonstrated a correlation between grapefruit and better health outcomes. Grapefruit alone may not be fully responsible but it’s a very nutritious fruit and should be incorporated into more diets.

Individuals on specific medications may have an undesired drug-nutrient interaction and have been told not to eat grapefruit.2 Individuals not on these specific medications, however, can easily include grapefruit or 100% grapefruit juice as part of her/his healthy diet.

6 Easy Ways to Add Grapefruit to Your Day

  1. Have ½ medium grapefruit with your breakfast, lunch or dinner.
  2. Add grapefruit segments to your dinner salad.
  3. Toss grapefruit into your next stir-fry!
  4. Use grapefruit juice to make oatmeal.
  5. Make a parfait using fresh or canned grapefruit to satisfy your sweet tooth.
  6. Create a colorful fruit salad with grapefruit & grapefruit juice.

 

1 Mary Murphy, et al. Consumption of grapefruit is associated with higher nutrient intakes and diet quality among adults, and more favorable anthropometrics in women, NHANES 2003-2008. Food & Nutrition Research. (2014);58:22179. Accessed January 21, 2015. View Article

2 Food and Drug Administration. “Grapefruit Juice and Medicine May Not Mix,” last modified January 2014. Accessed January 21, 2015. View Article

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