Grapefruit is an ideal fruit for a weight-loss diet and is low in calories, has large amounts of water and has a certain compound or mechanism that can help control your insulin levels. Before you add grapefruit to your diet or begin any new weight loss diets, it is important for you to also understand how losing weight works.
Low in Calories
One of the primary reasons grapefruit is a good weight loss fruit is because it is so low in calories but also has vitamins and minerals that your body needs. The American Council on Exercise notes that a medium grapefruit has only 40 calories, with a larger grapefruit being closer to 60 calories. Jonny Bowden, Ph.D, in his book, “The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth,” explains that grapefruit is also a smart choice for dieting because it is a good low-calorie source of vitamin C and potassium. He also notes that it has moderate amounts of calcium, magnesium and phytosterols. Red and pink grapefruit are also a good source of vitamin A. White grapefruit is not as high in these vitamins and minerals.
Bowden states that fruits such as grapefruit are “high-volume foods.” He explains that a high-volume food has a relatively large amount of air, fiber and water and a relatively low number of calories. High-volume foods, such as grapefruit, work well on a weight-loss diet because they will fill you up and suppress your appetite without significantly increasing calories. A medium grapefruit has a little over 2 g of fiber, but has sizable amounts of water.
While many different foods are low in calories and high in overall volume, grapefruit may be a particularly smart choice for your weight-loss diet according to researchers at Scripps Clinic, Bowden and the American Council on Exercise. In a study published in the Spring 2006 “Journal of Medicinal Foods,” Scripps’ Clinic researchers found grapefruit had a unique mechanism or compound that can increase your insulin resistance. Ideally, as a dieter, you want to keep your blood sugar as stable as possible to prevent your body from releasing insulin. Insulin release can promote fat storage. The more resistance you have to insulin, the better. The researchers admit that they do not quite understand how grapefruit improves your insulin sensitivity, but they suggest that you add grapefruit to your diet.
It is important for you to understand that simply eating grapefruit will not “make” you lose weight. Food does not burn fat; weight loss is a product of your overall diet and lifestyle. In short, to lose weight, you need to consume fewer calories than you burn. This is called a caloric deficiency. As the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention explains, a caloric deficiency is most healthfully created by substituting low-calorie foods, such as grapefruit, for high-calorie foods that are rich in saturated fat or sugar.