Grapefruit Diet May Curb Obesity, Diabetes

A flavonoid found in grapefruit can reduce fat and curb obesity, according to a study out of the University of Western Ontario. In fact, researchers say citrus could prove to be a weapon in the fight against diabetes.

GrapefruitIt’s a scientific fact: no matter which way you stick the spoon in a grapefruit, or how carefully you position yourself, it always squirts you in the eye.

Nevertheless, a new study says that the benefits of eating grapefruit may outweigh the risk. In fact, grapefruit could prove to be a weapon in the fight against diabetes.

That’s according to a new study from the Robarts Research Institute at Canada’s University of Western Ontario, which found that naringenin, a flavonoid found in grapefruit, can switch the liver from fat-storing to fat-burning mode.

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In the study, the test mice were divided into two groups. One group ate food that had been treated with naringenin derived from grapefruit; the other group got the regular mouse chow sans naringinin. Both groups got the same amount of food, with same amount of fat – enough to make them gain weight under ordinary conditions.

Sure enough, after a short period of time the mice that ate the normal food became obese, developing insulin resistance and skyrocketing cholesterol levels. The mice given the narenginin-laced food, however, did not suffer from these problems.

Yes, their cholesterol and insulin levels did rise — but somehow the naringenin “reprogrammed” their livers, causing their little furry bodies to burn off all that nasty fat rather than storing it.

So what does it all mean? The researchers concluded that the obesity that should have developed in these mice was completely prevented by naringenin – although they’re not sure exactly how.

The tests involved far higher doses of naringenin than those found naturally in the fruit, but the data does suggest that eating more grapefruit might be of benefit to those with overweight or obesity. However, people who are taking certain drugs, such as statins or Metformin, should not eat  grapefruit, as it reacts badly with those medications.

If you’re on any special medications, always check with your doctor before making significant changes to your diet.

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