In the 1980's many people embarked on something called the Grapefruit Diet which meant eating copious amounts of grapefruit each day and no more than 800 calories a day.
Like many diets that have come and gone since the 80's nutritional experts and dieticians dismissed the Grapefruit Diet as a fad. Any suggestion that grapefruit could help anyone burn more body fat was seen as complete nonsense. However, as experts have uncovered since, not so.
The Grapefruit Diet - Latest research
The latest research, carried out by scientists at the Nutrition and Medical Research Centre at Scripps Clinic in San Diego, USA, found that by adding grapefruit and grapefruit juice to your diet, a dieter really can aid weight loss. However, unlike the low calorie fad grapefruit diet of the 1980s, dieters will lose weight without changing what else they eat!
The study, carried out by Dr Fujioka found that obese people that ate grapefruit with each meal lost on average over 3.5 lbs over the course of the 12 week test.
How does the new Grapefruit Diet work?
Dr Fujioka and his San Diego team believe that grapefruit contains compounds that reduce the level of insulin, which in turn can promote weight loss.
How does this work? Simply put increased levels of insulin occur after ingesting sugar in the form of simple and complex carbohydrates (all carbohydrates are broken down in the body into sugar) which fails to be used effeciently as fuel. Any sugar (as used by the body as muscle and blood glycogen) that isn't used as fuel is transported around the body by insulin to be stored as fat.
Secondly, insulin can increase the appetite. A prime example of this is when a sugary food is eaten (e.g. a cake or sweets) and not long after the eater still feels hungry.
Finally, increased levels of insulin doesn't promote the body to use stored enegry (excess body fat).
Advantages of the Grapefruit Diet
If grapefruit lowers the level of insulin production, this can only be a good thing for someone looking to lose weight and body fat.
Also, the new style Grapefruit Diet also allows the dieter to eat a full balaned diet, including lean meats, fish, simple and complex carbohydrates. This means that weight loss can be controlled and the dieter will have the enegry to include an programme of exercise to complement their diet plan.
Disadvantages of the Grapefruit Diet
How grapefruit lowers the level of insulin production is, as yet, unclear. This means that more reasearch is required before scientists and Joe Public fully understand the role grapefruit can plan in weight management and weight loss.
The Grapefruit Diet - Conclusion
In no way should dieters follow the old style low calorie Grapefruit Diet. That style of diet and weight loss programme is simply too restrictive and energy sapping to be sustainable. However, their in no harm to include grapefruit after every meal (or even after breakfast and dinner) while following a calorie controlled healthy balanced diet. If Dr Fujioka and other scientists agree that grapefruit can allow increase weight loss who are we to argue.
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