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Red grapefruit appears to lower cholesterol, fight heart disease

type of cholesterol whose elevated levels are often associated with heart problems, the researchers say.

It is likely that antioxidants in the grapefruits are responsible for their health benefits, says Gorinstein, adding that the red variety generally has higher antioxidants than the white. But its also possible that red grapefruit may contain unknown chemicals that are responsible for the observed triglyceride-lowering effect, she says. Additional studies are planned.

Both the fresh fruit and the juice are believed to be equally beneficial, Gorinstein and her associates say. One cup of fresh grapefruit is roughly equivalent to half a cup of juice.

Grapefruit is known to interact with certain medications sometimes adversely so the researchers caution people on prescription medication to consult with their doctor or pharmacist to determine whether their medicine will interact before consuming grapefruit products. Appropriate exercise, well-balanced nutrition and avoidance of tobacco also are important factors in reducing the risk of heart disease, health experts say.


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Contact: Michael Bernstein
m_bernstein@acs.org
202-872-4400
American Chemical Society
8-Feb-2006


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