The study was conducted by a group of scientists under the leadership of Dr. Shela Gorinstein of the Hebrew University School of Pharmacy, Department of Medicinal Chemistry and Natural Products, in cooperation with Prof. Abraham Caspi, head of the Institute of Cardiology at Kaplan Hospital in Rehovot. In addition, scientists from Poland and Singapore participated in laboratory work connected with the project.
The study, which strengthens a growing body of evidence supporting the heart benefits of eating citrus fruit, was published this month on the website of the American Chemical Society's Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. The study will appear in the journal's March 22 print issue.
February has been designated in the U.S. as American Heart Month. In the U.S., heart disease is the number one killer of women.
The grapefruit study included 57 patients at Kaplan Hospital, both men and women, with hyperlipidemia (high blood cholesterol) who recently had coronary bypass surgery and did not take statin drugs during the study period. Statins are commonly prescribed to lower cholesterol.
The patients, equally divided into three treatment groups, were given either a single serving of fresh red grapefruit, white (blond) grapefruit or no grapefruit, along with regular, balanced meals for 30 consecutive days. Israeli Jaffa red Star Ruby and white grapefruit varieties were used in this study.
The patients who received either red or white grapefruit showed significant decreases in blood lipid levels, whereas the patients that did not eat grapefruit showed no changes in lipid levels, according to the researchers. Red grapefruit was more effective than
Contact: Jerry Barach
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem