Wednesday, April 17, 2013
Refreshing and delicious grapefruit is rich in phytonutrients such as vitamin A, beta-carotene, and lycopene. It is revered as fruit of "paradise" for its unique health-promoting as well as disease-healing properties, especially among health-conscious, fitness freaks.
The plant is a subtropical citrus tree and botanically belongs to the large Rutaceaefamily of citrus fruits of the genus: Citrus. Scientific name: Citrus paradisi.
Health benefits of Grapefruit
Delicious, grapefruit is very low in calories,
consists of just 42 calories per 100 g. Nonetheless; it is rich in
dietary insoluble fiber pectin,
which by acting as a bulk laxative helps to protect the colon mucous
membrane by decreasing exposure time to toxic substances in the colon
as well as binding to cancer-causing chemicals in the colon.
Pectin has also been shown
to reduce blood cholesterol levels by
decreasing re-absorption of cholesterol binding bile acids in the
The fruit contains very good levels of
vitamin-A (provides about 1150 IU per 100g), and flavonoid antioxidants
such as naringenin,
Besides, it is a moderate source of lycopene,
beta-carotene, xanthin and lutein. Studies suggest that
these compounds have antioxidant properties and are essential for
vision. The total antioxidant strength measured in terms of oxygen
radical absorbance capacity (ORAC) of grapefruit
is 1548 µmol TE/100 g.
Further, vitamin A is also required
maintaining healthy mucus membranes and skin. Consumption of natural
fruits rich in vitamin-A, and flavonoids helps to protect from lung and
oral cavity cancers.
It is an excellent source of antioxidant vitamin-C;
providing about 52% of DRI. Vitamin-C is a powerful natural
anti-oxidant and helps the body develop resistance against infectious
agents and scavenge harmful free radicals. It, furthermore, is required
for the maintenance of healthy connective tissue and aids in early
wound healing. It also facilitates dietary iron absorption from the
100 g of fresh fruit contains about 135 mg of
potassium electrolyte. Potassium is an important component of cell and
body fluids, helps controlling heart rate and blood pressure through
countering sodium effects.
Red varieties of
grapefruits are especially rich in the most powerful flavonoid
Studies have shown that lycopene protects skin damage from UV rays, and
offers protection against prostate cancer.
Additionally, it contains moderate levels of
B-complex group of vitamins such as folates, riboflavin, pyridoxine,
and thiamin in addition to some resourceful minerals such as iron,
calcium, copper, and phosphorus.