A grapefruit juice a day, keeps heart diseases away

Scientists found that health-boosting chemicals, called flavanones, that are naturally found in citrus fruits greatly improved circulation with as little as half a pint.

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A daily glass of grapefruit juice keeps blood vessels healthy and could protect against heart disease, a new study has found.

The findings, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, thus suggest regular grapefruit juice consumption could play a vital part in warding off heart disease.

Researchers at the French National Institute for Agricultural Research at Clermont-Ferrand, France, recruited 48 healthy women aged between 50 and 65, one of the highest risk groups for heart disease.

Half the group was given a daily quota of 340 millilitres, roughly half a pint of grapefruit juice packed with flavanones and the rest an identical-looking drink but with no flavanones.

After a few months the two groups then swapped over.

The results from the 6-month trial showed that after regular consumption of flavanone-containing juice, there was a significant improvement in the health of the volunteers’ blood vessels, but there was little or no change when they drank the flavanone-free version.

In a report on their findings the researchers said:

“Regular grapefruit juice consumption by middle-aged, healthy postmenopausal women is beneficial for arterial stiffness. This effect may be related to flavanones present in grapefruit."

The study however warned that patients with existing heart disease should be careful about drinking grapefruit juice as it can interfere with medication.

This is because levels of drugs used to treat raised cholesterol or high blood pressure can increase significantly after just one glass of the juice, exposing patients to a greater risk of side-effects.

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