Grapefruit: Nutritional Value, Health Benefits, Interactions

Grapefruit: Nutritional Value, Health Benefits, Interactions

Bajaj Finserv Health
March 07, 202213 mins read

Key Takeaways

  • Have grapefruit salad to reduce constipation and boost your immunity
  • Improve your heart and kidney health by eating grapefruit frequently
  • Whether or not you follow the grapefruit diet, this fruit aids weight loss

Tropical citrus fruit with sweetness and a tinge of sourness, you simply cannot resist grapefruit benefits! Being rich in fiber and packed with antioxidants, it is one of the healthiest fruits you can include in your daily meals. Though grapefruit is common in the winter season, you can buy certain varieties even during spring. 

You can see that the flesh of the grapefruit comes in different colors. While there are white and pink grapefruits, the sweetest of all varieties is the red grapefruit. Wondering how this fruit got its name? It is because you find grapefruit on trees in clusters similar to grapes. Include a grapefruit salad in your daily diet and enjoy its umpteen health benefits!

Read on to know more about how grapefruit benefits your health. 

Nutritional Component in Grapefruit

Grapefruit is packed with vitamins, minerals, carbs, proteins, lipids, and fiber. Grapefruit has the following nutritional value per 100 grams:




10.7 g


0.77 g


0.14 g


1.6 g


6.89 g


22 mg


0.08 mg


9 mg


135 mg


0.07 mg


18 mg


0.022 mg


0.11 mg

Vitamin C

31.2 mg


0.043 mg


0.031 mg


  0.204 mg  

Pantothenic acid 

0.262 mg  

Vitamin B6 

0.053 mg


13 mg


42 calories

Additional read: Top Everyday Superfoods

Benefits of Grapefruit Consumption

Prevent diabetes and insulin resistance

Regular consumption of grapefruit may have the ability to protect against diabetes-causing insulin resistance. Your cells become insulin resistant when they cease reacting to insulin. In addition, this fruit is low in carbohydrates and high in fibre, which helps control blood sugar levels and makes it a healthy option for people with diabetes. According to several kinds of research, those who eat grapefruit are less likely to develop insulin resistance and have stable blood sugar levels.

The hormone insulin controls several bodily functions. Although it plays a part in various metabolic processes, blood sugar regulation is the one for which it is most well-known. Increased insulin and blood sugar levels due to insulin resistance are significant risk factors for type 2 diabetes. Consuming grapefruit may help regulate insulin levels, which reduces your risk of developing insulin resistance. One study found that, compared to the control group, people who had half a fresh grapefruit before meals experienced significantly lower insulin levels and insulin resistance. Additionally, Naringin, a substance found in grapefruit, can help increase glucose tolerance, particularly in people with type 2 diabetes.

High levels of antioxidants are present in Grapefruit

Grapefruit is a high-fibre, low-carb food with a lot of water. Numerous antioxidants, including Vitamin C, lycopene, beta-carotene, flavanones, etc., are found in the body and can aid with heart health, digestion, immunity, blood pressure, diabetes, cholesterol levels, skin health, renal health, and other conditions. They also protect your cells from the harmful effects of free radicals and unstable molecules that can cause negative physiological reactions.

Eat grapefruit and improve your heart health

Consuming grapefruit regularly can boost your cardiovascular health by decreasing risk factors for heart illnesses. According to a study, daily intake of this fruit showed improvements in blood pressure [4]. Blood pressure and cholesterol are key factors responsible for heart diseases. Presence of vital nutrients in grapefruit helps in improving your heart health. The potassium present in grapefruit plays an important role in reducing blood pressure. It also contains high fiber that helps lower your cholesterol.

Having a grapefruit a day reduces the risk of kidney stones

When there is a buildup of waste in the kidney, you are prone to kidney stones. These waste substances need to be flushed out from your body in the form of urine. In case that does not happen, they get crystallized and form stones. These stones can obstruct your urine flow. Calcium stones are one of the most common types of stones found in kidneys. Grapefruit contains citric acid that binds with calcium in your kidneys. This helps eliminate stones from your body.

Stay hydrated thanks to grapefruit

This fruit has a lot of water content and eating it can quench your thirst. You’ll be surprised to know that the total weight of the fruit is made up of water. If you are bored of drinking water to avoid dehydration, an interesting way is to eat plenty of grapefruits! 

Drink grapefruit juice and beat insomnia

Insomnia is a condition in which you have disturbed sleeping patterns. Taking a glass of grapefruit juice before you sleep can work wonders! It contains tryptophan chemical, which helps promote good sleep. Have this fruit and sleep peacefully. 

Prevent insulin resistance with grapefruits

Resistance to the insulin hormone is a key factor causing diabetes. This happens when your cells no longer respond to insulin. This hormone is essential in regulating your blood sugar levels. When there is resistance, there is high blood sugar that results in diabetes. Eating grapefruit regularly can keep your insulin levels in control, lowering the chances of insulin resistance. It is better to have the whole fruit instead of drinking just the juice to regulate your blood sugar. 

Lose weight by eating grapefruit

Grapefruits boost your metabolism and aid in weight loss. If you are looking to become trimmer and lose inches, following the grapefruit diet can be an ideal solution! This diet recommends having grapefruit benefits with every meal but isn’t backed by proper research. Take elements of this diet and incorporate grapefruit into your weekly meals. The presence of essential nutrients in grapefruit can help in controlling your weight and preventing obesity. Grapefruit is also rich in fiber that keeps you satiated.

Boost immunity by eating grapefruit

Since it is packed with all essential nutrients, this fruit helps boost your immune system. It is rich in Vitamin C with powerful antioxidant properties. These antioxidants protect your cells from viruses and bacteria [1]. Vitamin C also plays a key role in reducing respiratory tract infections like common cold [2]. Grapefruits also contain vitamin A that helps in protecting your body from inflammation and other infections [3]. Several other nutrients present in grapefruit include:

  • Vitamin B
  • Iron
  • Copper
  • Zinc
  • Potassium
  • Magnesium

You may not be able to think of a better immunity-boosting breakfast than eating grapefruits regularly!

Additional read: Vitamin A for the immune system

Reduce constipation with grapefruit

Since grapefruit is rich in fiber, eating it in the morning hours is beneficial. It helps in easing your bowel movements, eliminating constipation. The juice of this fruit enables your digestive organs to work efficiently. As a result, there is proper secretion of digestive juices that help induce bowel movements. This way you get relief from all sorts of digestive ailments.

Grapefruit has skin advantages

Vitamin C, abundant in grapefruit, shields the skin from UV rays, ageing, and inflammation.

It is widely used in serums to repair the skin, lighten dark spots, and smooth the skin surface. However, studies indicate that consuming more foods high in vitamin C, such as grapefruit, may help with hyperpigmentation, discolouration, and other signs of ageing. [2]

Collagen is produced by the body when vitamin C is stimulated, and collagen has been shown to reduce wrinkles and skin dryness.

Citric, malic, and tartaric acids are also present in grapefruit. The varieties of alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs) are wide. AHAs are often used in skin care products because of their many benefits, which include improved skin texture and suppleness.

Ways to add Grapefruit in diet infographic

List of the Essential Antioxidants Found in Grapefruit:

C vitamin:

This is a potent, water-soluble antioxidant found in high concentrations in grapefruit. Vitamin C, a potent antioxidant that destroys free radicals in the body, is plentiful in grapefruit. These free radicals cause cancer. Antioxidants from lycopene are also present, lowering prostate cancer risk. Cells may be shielded from harm that commonly causes cancer and heart disease.


Another advantage of grapefruits is their high content of beta-carotene, a form of vitamin A. Beta-carotene is turned into vitamin A in the body and is considered to help lessen the risk of some chronic illnesses such as heart disease, cancer, and eye problems such as macular degeneration. You only get around 4% of the vitamin A you need from an orange, but you can get more than 50% from a complete grapefruit.


Consuming grapefruit can reduce the risk of developing cancer. It also helps lower prostate cancer risk. Additionally, it could help prevent tumours' growth and lessen conventional cancer treatments' side effects.


Hesperidin and naringenin are the two flavonoids that are most frequently found in grapefruit. According to research, several flavonoids have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and cardioprotective characteristics that may help shield against a number of diseases and ailments. For example, their anti-inflammatory characteristics have been demonstrated to lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels, lowering the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Various Ways To Eat Grapefruit:

Grapefruit takes little to no preparation, making it simple to incorporate into your diet. So even if you have a hectic, on-the-go lifestyle, you may consume grapefruit daily without worrying about it taking up too much of your time.

  • Snack just on grapefruit slices
  • Consume it as an alternative to less healthful desserts
  • You can cut the grapefruit into slices and add some salt or sugar in the required amounts
  • You can grill the grapefruit
  • You can make very tasty grapefruit salsa
  • You can enjoy the juice of the grapefruit
  • Try salads made with grapefruit, arugula, and pecans
  • Blend it into a smoothie with additional fruits and veggies
  • Combine it with yoghurt and honey in a morning parfait

Precautions Tips For Grapefruit

Here are some standard safety measures you should follow when eating grapefruits:

Precautions for women who are expecting a baby or nursing:

There is insufficient evidence to recommend using grapefruit during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Grapefruits have the ability to generate heat. Therefore, if one is pregnant, grapes should be avoided during the third trimester. Also, it should not be consumed in liquid form as consuming grape juice may cause an imbalance in blood sugar levels. So, it is preferable to eat in moderation and consult a dietitian.

Children and the elderly should be cautious:

While grapefruit is safe for most seniors, those who use prescription drugs should read the warning label. Grapefruit can aggravate the effects of various drugs, including those used to treat sleeplessness, anxiety, and high blood pressure.

Irregular heartbeats and cardiac muscle abnormalities (cardiomyopathy):

Drinking grapefruit juice may raise the risk of abnormal heart rhythms and heartbeat abnormalities. Grapefruit juice should be avoided by people with cardiac muscle diseases (cardiomyopathy). Also, the proteins in the liver and small intestine that typically break down many drugs are hampered by grapefruit. When you consume grapefruit or drink grapefruit juice while taking certain medications, your blood levels of the drugs may rise and you may have additional negative effects. Grapefruit juice should also be avoided by people with irregular heartbeats.

For Patients with diseases such as hormone-sensitive cancers:

Grapefruit juice may raise hormone levels in the blood. So, avoid grapefruit if you have a condition that makes you hormone sensitive. This increases the chance of hormonally sensitive disorders.

 Menopausal Adults:

According to several studies, postmenopausal women who drink at least a quart of grapefruit juice daily have a 25% to 30% higher risk of breast cancer. Grapefruit juice slows down the body's metabolism of estrogen and may even raise its levels. These results need to be confirmed by other research. Avoid consuming large amounts of grapefruit juice until further information is available, especially if you have breast cancer or are more likely than average to acquire breast cancer.

Side Effects of Grapefruit:

When used in moderation, grapefruits and juice may be safe to eat or drink. However, here's what you need to know before eating grapefruits:

  • Grapefruit contains a lot of vitamin C, which isn't usually hazardous in excessive amounts. However, exceeding the recommended daily consumption for an extended period of time may result in tissue damage. As previously stated excessive vitamin C use can cause diarrhea, nausea, cramps, and other mild gastrointestinal disorders.
  • Certain drugs may be affected by grapefruit, grapefruit juice, and similar oils and extracts. This is due to grapefruit's natural capacity to inhibit CYP3A4, an enzyme necessary for drug absorption. For example, if you consume grapefruit juice with your medicine, the drug will not work properly.
  • Grapefruit juice consumption may increase the risk of abnormal cardiac rhythms and increase irregular heartbeats. Grapefruit juice should be avoided by people with cardiac muscle diseases (cardiomyopathy).
  • Some antibiotics should not be combined with grapefruit because they can cause a disruption in heart rhythm or function.
  • Grapefruit consumption in larger quantities is a concern to postmenopausal women since it raises the likelihood of breast cancer
  • Additionally, consuming grape juice may raise the blood's hormone levels

Grapefruit Interactions With Other Drugs:

Significant Interaction (Avoid using this combo)

Drinking grapefruit juice while taking certain drugs may improve their effectiveness and adverse effects:

  • Artemether, Buspirone, Carbamazepine, Carvedilol, Cisapride, Clomipramine, Cyclosporine, Dextromethorphan, Estrogens, Halofantrine, Methadone, Methylprednisolone, Praziquantel, Quinidine, Scopolamine, Sildenafil, Tacrolimus, Terfenadine, Ticagrelor Calcium channel blockers (help reduce blood pressure
  • Diazepam, Alprazolam, and Midazolam are examples of sedative drugs.
  • Sotalol, Amiodarone, and Quinidine are medications that produce an irregular heartbeat.
  • Medications that reduce cholesterol levels in the blood, such as Atorvastatin, Pitavastatin, and Lovastatin, are a few examples. 

Drinking grapefruit juice with some drugs may reduce their effectiveness and adverse effects:

  • Etoposide, Celiprolol (used to treat high blood pressure), Clopidogrel (used to treat heart disease and stroke) (anti-cancer drug)

Interactions of Moderate Strength (Be careful while using this combo)

When using the following drugs, avoid drinking grapefruit juice:

  • Aliskiren, Blonanserin, Budesonide, Caffeine, Colchicine, Dapoxetine, and Erythromycin are metabolized by the liver. 
  • Sedatives, antidepressants, and allergy medications are among the examples.

Small-scale Interactions (Be watchful of such combinations):

  • Pumps in the cells transport drugs like Acebutolol and Amprenavir (P-glycoprotein substrates)

You should speak with your doctor about the fruits and vegetables to avoid if you are on medication for a health problem. Additionally, before consuming any plant or grapefruit juice for its health advantages, consult your doctor about possible side effects and complications.

Interesting Grapefruit Benefits

Ways to Enjoy Grapefruit


The most apparent method to consume grapefruit is fresh off its rind. However, if you want a sour, refreshing flavour, scoop your grapefruit right out of the skin with a grapefruit spoon or cut it into segments with a sharp knife. Grapefruit is a terrific morning fruit that also works well as a snack, especially when you consider how nutritious grapefruit is.

When eating fresh grapefruit, try to avoid the firm, white meat (known as pith) between the segments. This carries most of the sourness in the fruit and is only sometimes the most enjoyable-tasting component of this exquisite citrus.

Using Sugar:

A modest sprinkling of sugar goes a long way when it comes to adding sweetness to grapefruit. Brown sugar is traditionally used to enhance the flavour of grapefruit, but if you don't want to load your meal with unneeded sweets, an artificial sweetener works just as well.

Cut your grapefruit in half with a serrated knife, add your preferred sugar, and serve.

Using Salt:

While it may seem counter-intuitive, adding salt to fresh grapefruit is one of the finest ways to neutralize the fruit's inherent bitterness and bring out its sweetness.

According to science, salt inhibits some of the taste receptors on your tongue, making us less likely to detect bitterness. Grapefruit dusted with salt, on the other hand, tastes sweeter. [3]

If you want to bring out the taste of the fruit, sprinkle it with a bit of sugar and salt.

In the Juice:

Grapefruit is a very juicy citrus fruit, so why not capitalize on this by producing a big fat jug of grapefruit juice to drink on its own or as a mixer? Of course, you may drink grapefruit straight or mixed with lemon or orange juice and sugar. In any case, it's a refreshing treat that's also quite healthy for you.

Studies have shown that eating grapefruit and grapefruit products can lower blood pressure and reduce heart disease risk.

While there are numerous grapefruit benefits you can enjoy, you need to take care while consuming them. There are certain medications that can cause reactions in your body when you have grapefruits. Speak to a doctor before including them in your diet in a major way. Search for the ‘doctor near me’ option on Bajaj Finserv Health so that you can meet a specialist close to you. Book online consultation to get your questions answered and live a healthier, fitter life!

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Please note that this article is solely meant for informational purposes and Bajaj Finserv Health Limited (“BFHL”) does not shoulder any responsibility of the views/advice/information expressed/given by the writer/reviewer/originator. This article should not be considered as a substitute for any medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always consult with your trusted physician/qualified healthcare professional to evaluate your medical condition. The above article has been reviewed by a qualified doctor and BFHL is not responsible for any damages for any information or services provided by any third party.

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