The grapefruit is a cross between an orange and a pomelo.The grapefruit offers many health benefits for skin, blood pressure, heart health and disease prevention. Grapefruits are also used in slimming diets, because of the alleged promoting effect on metabolism and fat burning. However, this is not supported by scientific evidence. Grapefruit has excellent nutritional value and is high in vitamin C. Store grapefruit in a cool, dry place away from sunlight. Choose a grapefruit that is heavy and full of juice and feels a little soft when you squeeze it a bit.
What is grapefruit?
The grapefruit (Citrus ×paradisi) is a subtropical citrus tree known for its relatively large sour to semi-sweet, slightly bitter fruit. Grapefruit is a citrus hybrid native to Barbados as an accidental cross between two introduced species – sweet orange (C. sinensis) and pomelo (C. maxima), both of which were introduced from Asia in the 17th century.
The evergreen grapefruit trees usually grow to about 5-6 feet in height, although they can reach 13-15 feet. The leaves are glossy, dark green, long (up to 15 centimetres) and thin. 5 cm large white flowers with four petals appear. The fruit is yellow-orange with a generally flattened spherical shape; it varies in diameter from 10-15 cm. The flesh is segmented and varies in color depending on the cultivars, including white, pink and red with varying degrees of sweetness (in general, the redder varieties are the sweetest).
Grapefruit comes in many different varieties.The most popular varieties currently grown are red, white and pink grapefruits, referring to the color of the flesh. The taste of the different types of grapefruit varies from very sour and slightly sour, to sweet and bitter. Grapefruit mercaptan, a sulfur-containing terpene, is one of the compounds that has a strong influence on the taste and smell of grapefruit.
Nutritional value of grapefruits
Vitamins and minerals
Per 100 grams of grapefruit:
- Vitamin A 1,150 IU
- Vitamin B1 0.04mg
- Vitamin B2 0.02mg
- Vitamin B6 0.03mg
- Vitamin B11 (folic acid) 15 mcg
- Vitamin B12 –
- Vitamin C 45mg
- Vitamin D –
- Sodium –
- Potassium 180mg
- Calcium 10mg
- Phosphorus 22mg
- Iron 0.1mg
- Magnesium 9mg
- Zinc 0.17mg
Grapefruits are rich in vitamin C
Grapefruit is an excellent source of vitamin C, a vitamin that supports the immune system. Vitamin C-rich foods like grapefruit can help reduce cold symptoms or the severity of cold symptoms; Vitamin C fights colds (as well as the flu ). Vitamin C also prevents the free radical damage that causes inflammation, and it is therefore associated with reduced severity of inflammatory conditions, such as asthma, osteoarthritis (a form of osteoarthritis ), and rheumatoid arthritis . Since free radicals can oxidize cholesterol leading to plaques that can rupture, causing heart attacks or strokes, vitamin C is beneficial for promoting cardiovascular health. Due to the many health benefits of vitamin C, it’s not surprising that research has shown that consuming fruits and vegetables high in this nutrient is associated with a reduced risk of death from a variety of causes, including heart disease , stroke, and cancer.
Grapefruit contains the antioxidant lycopene
The rich pink and red colors of grapefruit are due to lycopene, a carotenoid phytonutrient. Lycopene is only found in pink and red grapefruit. White grapefruit contains this carotenoid. Lycopene appears to have anticancer properties. Of all the common carotenoids in food, lycopene has the greatest capacity to fight oxygen free radicals, which are substances that can damage cells. Regularly eating lycopene-rich foods, such as pink grapefruit, can significantly reduce a man’s risk of developing prostate cancer .
Health benefits of Grapefruit
1. A real thirst quencher
Grapefruits consist mainly of vitamins and water. Freshly squeezed grapefruit juice is therefore the ideal thirst quencher for after exercise. It not only tastes nice and fresh, you also immediately bring your moisture level back to the right level.
2. Vitamin C Bomb
We could all use some extra vitamin C in the winter. Vitamin C protects your healthy body cells and immune system and is therefore very good for your resistance. Grapefruit contains a whopping 64 percent of the recommended daily intake of vitamin C. Feeling a cold coming on? Then you can eat a grapefruit, or squeeze it and drink juice from it.
3. For beautiful skin
Grapefruits provide important antioxidants that have several health benefits. The antioxidants in the fruit fight waste products and counteract lines, wrinkles and spots in the skin. They also protect cells from damage from free radicals that cause harmful reactions in your body, which can help prevent disease.
4. Good for bowel movements
Since grapefruits contain a lot of water and fiber, the nutrients of the fruit are easily transported throughout your body. So good for your bowel movements.
5. Good for your kidneys
Did you know that the bitter taste of grapefruits comes from the substance naringenin? Research shows that this substance can protect you from kidney damage.
6. Good for your muscle function
Grapefruits contain potassium, a mineral that is good for the muscles and nervous system.
7. Keeping you in a good mood
If you really don’t like grapefruits, it can be enough to smell them now and then . Scientists at the University of Chicago discovered that smelling this fruit has a beneficial effect on your emotions. For example, it can help to combat nervousness and lethargy.
8. Lowers Cholesterol Levels
Grapefruits contain pectin, a natural substance that lowers cholesterol levels.
9. Good for the weight
A grapefruit is one of the fruits with the fewest calories, and therefore also good for the weight.
10. High in Vitamin A
Red grapefruits in particular contain a lot of vitamin A. This vitamin keeps your eyes, skin, mucous membranes and bones healthy.