Grapefruit Juice for weight loss is a very beneficial gift of nature. It has been used since ancient times as a fruit to benefit health because of its distinct and wonderful taste. Being rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants this fruit can cure many diseases and disorders.
Is Grapefruit Juice Good for Weight Loss?
Some fad diets claim that the enzymes in grapefruit (and grapefruit juice) burn fat, according to the Cleveland Clinic. There isn’t evidence to back this up, and what little research is out there is scant and conflicting. Still, it’s possible that grapefruit juice may help with weight loss indirectly.
For instance, a February 2011 study in Nutrition & Metabolism had 86 adults with obesity eat either fresh grapefruit, grapefruit juice or water before each meal for three months after completing a two-week caloric restriction phase. All three groups lost weight, indicating that eating fruit, hydrating or drinking grapefruit juice before meals may be linked to reduced caloric intake.
That said, because all three groups lost weight, the researchers concluded that grapefruit or its juice isn’t more effective than water.
Another October 2014 study in PLOS One found that mice on a high-fat diet gained less weight when they drank grapefruit juice compared to water. However, this research only studied what grapefruit juice does for weight loss in mice, so more studies are needed to show this same link in humans.
Other evidence is conflicting. An older March 2006 study in the Journal of Medicinal Food gave 96 people with obesity either a placebo, a grapefruit capsule, apple juice, grapefruit juice or half a grapefruit before each meal for three months. The study found that the group who ate fresh grapefruit lost more weight than the other groups.
But this research is older, so new and larger studies are needed to better determine the link (if any) between grapefruit juice and fat loss.
If losing weight is your goal, talk to your doctor about the best diet and exercise plan for you rather than relying on one ingredient to find results, according to the Mayo Clinic.
Benefits of Drinking Grapefruit Juice
While there’s no clear link between grapefruit juice and weight loss, the beverage can still be a part of a balanced diet. Here are some of the benefits of 100-percent grapefruit juice:
1. It Contains Vitamins and Minerals
Grapefruit juice contains vitamins and minerals like calcium and vitamin C, per My Food Data. While these nutrients alone aren’t responsible for inducing weight loss, eating a balanced diet full of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein and healthy fats can contribute to finding your ideal weight, according to the Mayo Clinic.
And per a May 2014 review in Food & Nutrition Research, people assigned female at birth (AFAB) who regularly ate grapefruit or drank its juice had higher intakes of vitamin C, potassium, magnesium, fiber and beta-carotene compared to those who didn’t.
2. It May Support Healthy Cholesterol Levels
Per the Food & Nutrition Research review, grapefruit juice may be good for cholesterol, too. The research found that those who regularly ate the fruit or drank its juice had higher levels of HDL (“good”) cholesterol and lower triglyceride levels.
However, it’s important to note that this doesn’t mean grapefruit juice causes good cholesterol levels — the study just establishes a link between the two.
And remember, grapefruit can interact with medications for high cholesterol. So if you’re taking this type of medicine, steer clear of the fruit despite this potential benefit.
3. It May Help Stabilize Blood Sugar Levels
It’s possible that drinking grapefruit juice before a meal may help keep your blood sugar levels from spiking. For example, the 2014 PLOS One study found the mice that drank grapefruit juice had lower blood sugar and improved insulin tolerance compared to the mice that drank water.
Again, though, this study focused on mice, not humans, so more research is needed to clarify this link.
Similarly, the older Journal of Medicinal Food research found that grapefruit helped reduce insulin levels and improved insulin resistance — however, these results were observed with those who ate fresh grapefruit, not juice. And this study is older, so new research is needed to better establish the relationship between grapefruit juice and blood sugar levels specifically.
Benefits of Grapefruit Juice
Grapefruit juice has many health benefits. We’ll discuss the most important ones below:
1. For Weight Loss
Grapefruit juice can assist your weight loss because of its nutrients and caloric intake according to several studies:
- Low-calorie. According to the USDA, 100g of this juice contains 39 calories. Therefore, you can replace a heartier snack with a glass of grapefruit juice if you want to lose weight.
- Naringin. Naringin is a flavonoid found in grapefruit. This phytochemical has been shown to accelerate fat loss and to increase metabolism.
- Nootkatone. This essential oil in grapefruit helps your body burn glucose and fat at a higher speed. As a result, nootkatone accelerates your metabolism and stabilizes your insulin levels.
- Vitamin C. This vitamin has been shown to have fat-burning properties because it increases your metabolism. Likewise, a glass of this juice per day can help you burn more calories even at rest.
- Fiber intake. A medium grapefruit contains 4g of fiber that will decrease your appetite according to research. So if you want to lose weight faster, don’t filter the pulpy part of the grapefruit that contains a lot of fiber.
2. For Skin
Grapefruit juice helps your skin stay beautiful and young because of several nutrients:
- Vitamin A. Inflammatory skin conditions like rashes and dermatitis are the most common skin problems, but vitamin A reduces inflammation, helping your skin to stay healthy.
- Vitamins B and C, zinc, copper, and iron. These vitamins and minerals improve your immune system’s health, therefore, your body can fight pathogens that trigger skin infections more effectively. Besides, these nutrients can help to keep the integrity of your skin.
- Vitamin C and fiber. Several studies show that an unhealthy digestive system can trigger skin issues. However, vitamin C and fiber improve your digestion and promote the health of good gut bacteria.
Now that you know this juice is so healthy for you, let’s see how you can prepare it.
How to Make Grapefruit Juice Recipes
Grapefruit juice recipes are easy to make, but you have to choose the best recipe according to your fitness and health goals.
You can read more recipes below, but for now, let’s focus on some basic principles.
1. Make for Weight Loss
If you want to lose weight quickly, it’s important to ingest the grapefruit’s healthy fibers. Therefore, you should add enough water in your blender along with the grapefruit to create a juice-like consistency.
Adding some chili to the mix is another good idea because the capsaicin in chili has fat-burning properties.
2. Make for Skin Health
Studies show that garlic, green tea, carrots, beetroot, and turmeric improve your skin health. Consequently, you should add some of these spices and veggies to your grapefruit juice recipes if you have chronic skin issues.
3. Make for Better Immunity
If you’re always coming down with something or simply want to give your immune system a boost, mix this juice with other citrus fruits. Adding orange and/or lemon will increase your intake of vitamin C and antioxidants.
Since honey is a popular ingredient to strengthen the immune system, it can be a good addition to your juice. So if you crave a sweeter combination in your grapefruit recipes, add some honey to your taste.
4. With No Pulp
If you don’t like pulpy juice, you can use a sieve on top of your glass or pitcher to extract the juice. Another option is to prepare the grapefruit juice without using a blender.
You have two main options available:
- Cut the this fruit in half and squeeze the juice with your hands. Pro tip: Put the grapefruit in the microwave for a few seconds to squeeze more juice.
- Use a lemon squeezer.
After that, you can mix the this juice with other juices or spices for more flavors and aromas
Science-Based Benefits of Grapefruit
It’s high in powerful antioxidants
Grapefruit contains a few different antioxidants that provide various health benefits, including a reduced risk of several diseases
Antioxidants protect your cells from damage caused by free radicals, which are unstable molecules that may cause harmful reactions in your body
Here’s an overview of the most important antioxidants in grapefruit:
- Vitamin C. This is a powerful, water-soluble antioxidant that is present in high amounts in grapefruit. It may protect cells from damage that often leads to heart disease and cancer
- Beta-carotene. It’s converted into vitamin A in the body and is thought to help reduce the risk of some chronic conditions, including heart disease, cancer, and eye-related disorders like macular degeneration
- Lycopene. This is known for its potential ability to prevent the development of certain types of cancer, especially prostate cancer. It may also help slow the growth of tumors and decrease the side effects of common cancer treatments .
- Flavanones. Their anti-inflammatory properties have been shown to reduce blood pressure and cholesterol levels, reducing the risk of heart disease
Grapefruit contains several types of antioxidants that may help prevent the development of some chronic conditions, including heart disease and cancer.
7. It may reduce the risk of kidney stones
Consuming grapefruit may reduce your risk of developing kidney stones, which result from a buildup of waste materials in the kidneys.
These waste materials are products of metabolism that are typically filtered through the kidneys and removed from the body in urine.
However, when they crystallize in the kidneys, they become stones. Larger kidney stones may cause a blockage in the urinary system, which can be incredibly painful.
The most common type of kidney stone is calcium oxalate stones. Citric acid, an organic acid found in grapefruit, may be effective at preventing them by binding with calcium in your kidneys and flushing it out of your body
Also, citric acid has the ability to increase the volume and pH of your urine, producing an environment that is less favorable to the formation of kidney stones .
The citric acid in grapefruit may help reduce the formation of calcium oxalate kidney stones.
8. Grapefruit has hydration benefits
Grapefruit contains a lot of water and is, therefore, very hydrating. In fact, water makes up most of the fruit’s weight.
There are almost 4 ounces (118 ml) of water in half of a medium-sized grapefruit, which accounts for about 88% of its total weight
While drinking lots of water is the best way to stay hydrated, eating water-rich foods can also help.
Grapefruit has a high water content, which helps you stay hydrated.
9. It’s easy to add to your diet
Grapefruit requires little-to-no preparation, so it’s fairly easy to add to your diet.
Even if you live a busy, on-the-go lifestyle, you can still enjoy grapefruit on a regular basis without worrying about it taking up too much of your time.
Here are some ways you can enjoy grapefruit:
- Snack on grapefruit slices alone.
- Eat it as an alternative to dessert foods that are less nutritious.
- Try this salad, which combines grapefruit with arugula and pecans.
- Blend it into a smoothie with other fruits and veggies.
- Include it in a breakfast parfait with yogurt and honey.
Grapefruit is a nutritious food that’s easy to incorporate into your diet.
10. Grapefruit has benefits for skin
Grapefruit contains vitamin C, which helps protect the skin against sun damage, aging, and inflammation
Vitamin C is often used in serums to heal the skin, brighten dark spots, and smooth the skin surface. However, studies also show that an increased intake of vitamin C through foods like grapefruit may help with hyperpigmentation, discoloration, and signs of aging
Vitamin C helps the body produce more collagen, which has been shown to benefit skin hydration and wrinkles
Grapefruit also contains citric acid, malic acid, and tartaric acid. These are all different types of alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs). AHAs are often used in skin care products due to their variety of benefits, including improved skin texture and elasticity
Grapefruit contains several ingredients that have a wide range of skin benefits and protections.
Does Grapefruit Juice Burn Belly Fat?
In an effort to help speed up fat loss, many people look for quick tips and tricks that they can easily add to their daily routine. One such tactic is to start drinking grapefruit juice. While grapefruit juice may have certain health properties, however, it’s unlikely to lead to a direct increase in burning belly fat.
The idea that grapefruit may be a fat-burning super food stems from the 1930s, notes Jennifer Koslo, nutritionist at Precision Nutrition. The grapefruit diet made a reappearance in the mainstream in the 1970s with claims that you could lose 10 pounds in 10 days. According to Koslo, backers of the grapefruit diet and using grapefruits or grapefruit juice to lose weight in general claim that the fruit has powerful metabolic properties that help to ignite fat loss.
There’s some evidence linking a diet that contains grapefruit to maintaining a healthier weight. One study, published in Food and Nutrition Research in 2014, found that people who ate more grapefruit (which included drinking grapefruit juice) had lower body weights than those who didn’t eat the fruit, and they also had smaller waist and higher “good” HDL cholesterol levels. The researchers also found that people who ate grapefruit tended to get more essential nutrients — including fiber, which can aid weight loss.