Grapefruit EffectsGrapefruit is known as one of the most useful and nutritious natural foods. Grapefruits are packed with plenty of natural vitamins, minerals and other nutrients essential for our body and excellent health. The grapefruit diet is one of the most commonly used and the most effective types of crash diets which has helped may women achieve rapid weight loss and get slimmer. Organic grapefruits are known natural sources of fiber and energy which are highly valued for their effectiveness for speeding up metabolism and fat burning. Grapefruit juice benefits include more effective detoxification,  improved skin quality, as well as increased effectiveness of chemotherapy in those patients who were diagnosed with cancer. However, there are certain warning effects of consuming grapefruits and grapefruit juice which were reported in the leading scientific magazines earlier this month.

It was known before that using certain natural foods and products like orange juice or grapefruit juice can alter the effectiveness of medications, and a group of Canadian scientists of the Lawson Health Research Institute, in London, Ontario, conducted a series of scientific experiments in order to look closer at the issue. After analyzing plenty of information, they came to the conclusion that the effects of mixing medications and fresh grapefruits or grapefruit juice can be very serious. Before, the list of medicines the effect of which could get altered or affected by grapefruit was quite small, and Canadian scientists tried to extend it. After some laboratory experiments and extensive analysis, the experts came up with the list of over 85 types of medicines including both very common ones like antibiotics, painkillers, blood pressure lowering drugs, anti-allergy medications, antidepressants, statins, and specific medications like the ones for those patients who’ve had organ transplantation, heart disease, a cancer treatment, and so on.

According to the findings published this month in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, combining fresh grapefruits, grapefruit juice and even grapefruit products with the mentioned medications can lead to very serious and even life threatening circumstances. Gastrointestinal bleeding, kidney failure, respiratory system failure, and sudden death are a few of those. Dr David Bailey, one of team leaders of the Lawson Health Research Institute expert group underlined that there is obvious lack of awareness about the problem, and many people actually do not know about these specific ‘grapefruit benefits’. Grapefruit BenefitsMoreover, the scientists warn that some doctors and health care specialists also remain unaware about the dangers and health risks linked to mixing grapefruit products and medications. Ontario university experts found out that recently, an increasing number of cases regarding people suffering from the mentioned side effects  is being reported.

The Canadian scientists also suggested that the problem has been growing into a very serious issue due to increasing number of prescribed drugs which have problematic interaction with grapefruit products. ‘Between 2008 and 2012, the number of medications with the potential to interact with grapefruit and cause serious adverse effects  has increased from 17 to 43 – an average rate of increase exceeding six drugs per year,’ Dr. Bailay said. Moreover, such medications are very often prescribed to the patients with very common health conditions and are very often essential for the treatment of the ailments like high blood pressure, allergic reactions, high cholesterol levels, depression and psychological disorders, and so on. According to the report, about 43 of the mentioned 85 types of medications may have very serious side effects caused by interaction with grapefruit products.

The mechanism of harmful interaction of grapefruits products with medications is explained by high content of furanocoumarin, a compound that stops some enzymes in our intestine from breaking down foreign agents, including the ones that come from medications. As a result, the effects similar to the ones of medication overdose take place. “So you can unintentionally go from a therapeutic level to a toxic level just by consuming grapefruit juice,” Dr Bailay commented. Similar effects can be caused by consuming other citrus fruits like Seville oranges, lime, and others, as well as by their products and foods like marmalade, jams, etc.”Pharmacists are the best port of call for anyone concerned about how their diet may affect their medication. Information about any interactions would always be included in the patient information leaflet that comes with the medicine,” Neal Patel, an expert at the Royal Pharmaceutical Society underlined. Read more about this interesting study, the methods and the findings of Canadian expert group in this article.

Author Info: Hi! My name is Carla and I am a 5th year medical student at HYMS. I am interested in alternative medicine and I have done months researching the topic of herbal medicine. Besides, I like interviewing people and learning more about their experiences with one or another type of herbal treatments. I am willing to contribute to this site with my knowledge, and I would be happy to help you out to the best of my ability with any specific questions or problems related to alternative medicine.

Comments are closed.