Friday, April 8, 2011

A - Z of Amazing Fruits..... G is for Grapefruit

(image taken from

SO everyone has heard of the grapefruit diet right? Why was it so popular? Because it worked! Well, kind of... Grapefruits, when used correctly are a dieters best friend for a number of reasons. They increase the metabolic rate as well as lower insulin and are actually an appetite suppressant so incorporating them into your daily eating plan is not just good for losing weight, it’s essential. In saying that, I hate diets - so really grapefruits are everyone’s best friend as they have so many nutritional, health and wellness benefits. 
For starters, compared to other members of the citrus family and other fruits in general really, grapefruits have an extremely low calorie content. Like celery, you burn almost as many calories chewing and digesting a grapefruit as there is in the whole fruit! They are also very high in dietary fibre so keep you feeling full for longer. Make sure you eat the pith though as much of the fibre content is held in this thick white skin and the stringy bits in between the juicy, meaty segments. Many people eat grapefruits with a scoop by scooping out the flesh but be sure to eat as much of the entire fruit as possible to gain maximum nutritional benefits. This high level of natural fibre assists with the relief of constipation and therefore is a nurturing food for your digestive system, colon and bowel. 
Grapefruits are a really good liver tonic so help to eliminate toxins from the body, toxins like alcohol, antibiotics and medication residue. They are also and energizer so if you’ve ever wanted to know what the perfect ‘hangover juice’ is, you just found it! As an everyday drink, try skipping coffee and having a freshly squeezed grapefruit and lemon juice (equal parts of each) to really give your body a zesty morning boost! If you ever do a liver cleanse or detox - this mix is a must to start your day and help you kick your caffeine cravings. Seemingly conflicting with the last statement, pure grapefruit juice drunk before bed actually promotes very restful sleep and can have a very positive effect for those who suffer insomnia. 
Like the fig, grapefruits are very alkalizing. The also contain a high level of Vitamin C and potassium which aids with overall immunity boosting as well as promoting good urinary tract health. This high Vitamin C level and the fact that they are very low in sodium, they help to flush water retention and inflammation from the body which is another reason they are so popular with dieters, those with swollen joints and pregnant women. 
Add Grapefruits to your salad for a zesty change. 
I found this one on YUMMO!!!!
Ingredients - serves 4
1 cup quinoa
4 cups water
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/4 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons honey
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon minced serrano pepper (the larger red chili - almost looks like a cross between a capsicum and a chili) 
1/4 cup chopped fresh mint
1/4 cup minced coriander
1 shallot, minced
1 pinch salt and black pepper to taste
4 cups baby rocket leaves, washed and dried + 1 cup extra
1 avocado - peeled, pitted and diced
1/2 grapefruit, peeled and sectioned
  1. In a dry skillet over medium heat, toast the quinoa until it has a nutty aroma. Remove from heat, rinse and drain in a fine mesh strainer. Bring water to a boil in a saucepan, add salt, and slowly add toasted quinoa. Cook until tender and the outer rings appear on the grains, 15 to 20 minutes. Strain through a fine mesh colander. Place in a large bowl to cool.
  2. In a small bowl, combine cranberries, lime juice, olive oil, honey, garlic, serrano pepper, mint, coriander, shallot, and 1cup of the rocket. Stir into the cooled quinoa and add salt and freshly ground pepper to taste. Place 1 cup of baby rocket on each salad plate. Top with quinoa mixture, avocado, and grapefruit.

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