Low Calories in Grapefruit, but High in Nutrients
There are not a lot calories in grapefruit, but there is lots of nutrition in every bite. Packed with fiber, vitamin C, and potassium, but not calories, the grapefruit deserves a place on every breakfast table. The Ruby Red variety, produced in Texas, and other red and pink varieties are high in beta carotene, which is important in maintaining eye health and function. Red and pink varieties are also a good source of lycopene, a powerful antioxidant. All varieties are a good source of folate, essential to a healthy pregnancy, and calcium, which helps maintain bone density and reduce the risk of osteoporosis. All varieties are an excellent source of vitamin C, important to maintaining immune system function and skin elasticity. Grapefruit can be a useful tool in promoting heart health, lowering LDL cholesterol, the type of cholesterol linked to hardening of the arteries and heart attacks.
The Grapefruit Diet, also known as the Mayo Clinic Diet and the Hollywood Diet, gets its name from the daily consumption of grapefruit and its juice to lose weight as part of a very low calorie diet. It was not approved by the Mayo Clinic, but came to be associated with the clinic by long-standing rumor and fax machine distributed lore. The low number of calories in grapefruit make it an excellent diet food. There are several versions of the diet, some of which eliminate entire food groups, allow for unlimited consumption of high-fat, high-cholesterol, or sugar-laden foods, and some are quite rigid as to which foods can be eaten at certain meals. It is considered a fad diet for these reasons, and for the fact that there is no food or combination of foods that will guarantee weight loss or burn fat. The Grapefruit Diet also promises weight loss that is too rapid to be considered healthful by experts. Reducing overall calorie intake, exercising regularly, and consumption of low-calorie, nutrition-dense foods like grapefruit will lead to weight loss- but rapid, guaranteed results should be considered suspect. Like most diets, much of the rapid early weight loss is due to loss of part of the body’s water content, not burning fat.
The fruit contains nutrients essential for good health. It need not be consumed as frequently as the Grapefruit Diet calls for to assist with weight loss,however. Its inclusion with other low-calorie, nutrition-dense foods can be more than sufficient to encourage weight loss while obtaining the nutrients needed to maintain good health. Studies have linked consumption of fresh grapefruit, the juice and pills with improved weight loss, with consumption of the fresh fruit yielding the best results. For each of the calories in grapefruit, there is a burst of vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber like no other fruit. Grapefruit packs a low calorie punch that is packed with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fiber, and can be enjoyed any time.