Grapefruit and Weight Loss: New Research

Way back in the olden days (the 1970s), housewives around the United States tried to burn off body fat by following some version of the Grapefruit Diet. (also known as the Hollywood Diet & the Mayo Clinic Diet)

Dismissed as a fad, the theory behind the Grapefruit Diet was that if you ate half a grapefruit or drank a glass of grapefruit juice with each meal (while reducing your caloric intake down to 800 calories/day), you would lose weight.

And while the 1970s version of the Grapefruit Diet did wonders for grapefruit farmers, it wasn’t very successful at delivering long term weight loss.

Fast forward to 2010….. and this latest nugget of scientific research which shows us that those snake oil salesmen from the 1970s may have been on to something.

Naringenin, an antioxidant flavonoid derived from the bitter flavor of grapefruits and other citrus fruits, may cause the liver to break down fat while increasing insulin sensitivity.

The Theory

  • Normally, after a “normal” meal (consisting of carbs, fats & proteins), your blood is flooded with sugar.
  • This boost in blood sugar results in the activation of your Liver X Receptor Alpha – LXRα.
  • Which results in the production of fatty acids by your liver for long term storage – ie belly fat, saddle bags, love handles, etc….

Not good.

And, up until this latest research into Naringenin, the only way to prevent this from happening was by reducing your intake of carbohydrates – via fasting or eating low carb (ie Atkins).

But, with Naringenin, you would be able to eat carbs while still receiving the health benefits of eating low carb:

  • Fatty acids being released from your fat cells….
  • resulting in the PPARα receptor being activated in your liver…
  • leading to your body fat cells being broken down into ketones and used for energy, while also…
  • causing a reduction in vLDL (‘bad cholesterol’) production

And that’s not all.

Another benefit of Naringenin is that your PPARγ receptor is activated – resulting in an increase in sensitivity to insulin.

Taken together, all of this good stuff adds up to:

  • No more Type 2 Diabetes
  • No more high cholesterol
  • No more love handles


Naringenin – remember the name


0 thoughts on “Grapefruit and Weight Loss: New Research

  1. I read an article about this subject a couple of days ago. It suggests a good dose of caution before reading too much into the findings of the research.

    You can read the article here:

    One big thing I never knew before reading it was, apparently:

    “Grapefruit also is known to interact with a range of cardiovascular drugs and other medicines.”

    For this reason, many people on these drugs are advised to avoid grapefruit and its juice, in case it messes up their medication!

    You learn something new everyday!

  2. I don’t need to lose weight but I LOVE grapefruits. It will be interesting to see how this develops and if I hear more about it in the near future. Suggesting that someone eats half a grapefruit per day to help them lose weight would be a nice tip! Lol.

  3. Cuboard Love We ve heard about a tinkies dieet and what else to come?? Maybe healthhabits can do a post on a grapefruit and vodka dieet??
    Dont worry about the health aspect!! It will sure make u feel good even if the feeling is short lived!!

  4. The theory sounds good but is this diet really working? Is grapefruit really useful for losing weight? Has anyone try it with good results? That’s what I’d like to know:)

  5. Nice article. I tell all of my clients who want to lose weight to eat a grapefruit everyday. Thanks for the info!

  6. I introduced red grapefruit into my diet 4 wks ago and I have lost 4 lbs. That being said, however, in addition to a cup of grapefruit each morning, I reduced my calorie intake to 1200, do at the min 35 mins of cardio 3x a week, and started taking Biotin.

    If I lose the weight slow, it is more apt to stay off.

  7. I love grapefruits- they are not so cheap over here in the UK (or the nice ones aren’t!) I used to take medication every day which interacted with grapefruits and in fact all citrus fruits, I used it as a motivator to come off the medication I was on and now eat far more as a direct result!

    Not skinny though- don’t buy the weight thing at all.