Grapefruit and weight loss
The 12-week pilot study, led by Dr. Ken Fujioka, monitored weight and metabolic factors, such as insulin secretion, of the 100 men and women who participated in the Scripps Clinic 'Grapefruit Diet' study.
On average, participants who ate half a grapefruit with each meal lost 3.6 pounds, while those who drank a serving of grapefruit juice three times a day lost 3.3 pounds. However, many patients in the study lost more than 10 pounds.
'For years people have talked about the grapefruit diet, and some even swear by it, but now, we have data that grapefruit helps weight loss,' said Dr. Fujioka, principal researcher at the Nutrition and Metabolic Research Center at Scripps Clinic.
'Our study participants maintained their daily eating habits and slightly enhanced their exercise routine; the only dietary change was the intake of Florida grapefruit and grapefruit juice.'
Additionally, the research indicates a physiological link between grapefruit and insulin, as it relates to weight management. The researchers speculate that the chemical properties of grapefruit reduce insulin levels and encourage weight loss.
The importance of this link lies with the hormone's weight management function. While not its primary function, insulin assists with the regulation of fat metabolism.
Therefore, the smaller the insulin spike after a meal, the more efficiently the body processes food for use as energy and the less it's stored as fat in the body. Grapefruit may possess unique chemical properties that reduce insulin levels which promotes weight loss.
Obesity continues to plague the American public and the health system.
According to the National Center for Health Statistics, 64 percent of U.S. adults are considered overweight or obese. Overweight or obese people stand a greater likelihood of developing life-altering and/or life-threatening illnesses such as heart disease, cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, sleep apnea, arthritis, liver problems, and many others.
'Our study shows grapefruit can play a vital role in overall health and wellness, and in battling America's ever-growing obesity epidemic,' stated Dr. Fujioka.
'Whether it's the properties of grapefruit or its ability to satiate appetites, grapefruit appeared to help with weight loss and decreased insulin levels leading to better health. It's good the 'Grapefruit Diet' never lost its popularity among the public.'
The study linking grapefruit and grapefruit juice consumption to weight loss continues to broaden the health benefits associated with this citrus product.
You can learn more about how grapefruit can be beneficial to your health in our article, What are the health benefits of grapefruit?