Studies show grapefruit fights battle of the bulge and more
Three Published Reports Coincide With National Nutrition Month®
March 06, 2006
Sherman Oaks, CA (March 2, 2006) – From weight loss to heart health to disease risk reduction, three recent studies confirm the multiple health benefits of grapefruit. With March designated as National Nutrition Month®, it’s an opportune time to highlight the benefits of the tangy nutrient-packed fruit, which unlike some citrus fruits is available year-round.
Human Study Confirms Grapefruit Promotes Weight Loss
A study published in the March 2006 issue of the Journal of Medicinal Food supports the long-held belief that grapefruit is useful in the battle of the bulge. Dr. Ken Fujioka from Scripps Clinic in San Diego conducted a 12-week study of 100 obese men and women and found that consuming one-half grapefruit before meals resulted in an average weight loss of 3.6 pounds with some participants losing up to 10 pounds. Individuals who ate the grapefruit had significantly lower levels of insulin in their blood, which the researchers speculate resulted in the weight loss. The researchers further speculated that a natural plant compound in grapefruit, not the fiber content, was responsible for the weight loss since those who consumed grapefruit juice also lost weight despite the lack of fiber.
Grapefruit Lowers Cholesterol Levels
Researchers in Israel found that red and white grapefruit contain powerful antioxidants that may help reduce the risk of heart disease. Published in the February 2006 issue of the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, scientists found that serving heart by-pass patients the equivalent of one grapefruit a day significantly reduced cholesterol levels. The study included 57 patients, both men and women, who recently had
coronary bypass surgery and failed to respond to cholesterol-lowering medication. Red grapefruit was especially effective, reducing cholesterol by 15 per cent and triglycerides (a type of fat that increases the risk of heart disease) by 17 per cent.
Compound in Grapefruit May Protect Against Prostate Cancer
A laboratory study conducted by researchers at UCLA and Zhongshan University in China discovered that naringenin—a beneficial plant compound in grapefruit and oranges—helped repair damaged genetic material (DNA) in human prostate cancer cells. DNA repair is an important factor in cancer prevention since it stops cancer cells from multiplying. The research was published in the February 2006 issue of the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry. Scientists noted that DNA repair by naringenin might contribute to the cancer-fighting effects associated with a diet high in fruits and vegetables.
At only 60 calories, one half a grapefruit is an excellent source of vitamin C. Red and pink varieties are also rich in vitamin A. Grapefruit and other citrus fruits are included in the dietary programs of some of the world’s leading nutrition organizations including USDA’s Dietary Guidelines for Americans, the Produce for Better Health (PBH) Foundation’s 5 A Day Program, American Heart Association, American Cancer Society and the National Cancer Institute.
About Sunkist Growers
As one of the world's oldest and largest citrus marketing cooperatives, Sunkist Growers is owned by more than 6,000 citrus growers in California and Arizona, most of whom are small family farmers harvesting oranges, lemons and grapefruit. For more citrus information, nutrition tips and healthy recipes, visit www.sunkist.com.
1 Fujioka K, Greenway F, Sheard J, Ying Y. The Effects of Grapefruit on Weight and Insulin Resistance: Relationship to the Metabolic Syndrome. J. of Medicinal Food. Spring 2006;9(1):49-54.
2 Gorinstein S, Caspi A, Libman I, et al. Red Grapefruit Positively Influences Serum Tryglyceride Level in