How Does Grapefruit Affect Cholesterol?


Quick Answer

Grapefruit lowers the level of harmful LDL cholesterol, according to Everyday Health. The likely cause is the lycopene and liminoids that appear in the pulp, as well as pectin, a soluble fiber in the fruit.

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Full Answer

One study found that eating one red grapefruit every day for a month can contribute to LDL cholesterol reductions as high as 20 percent, notes Everyday Health. However, people who are taking prescription statin medicines for high cholesterol should not eat grapefruit, as the results can be fatal. Grapefruit contains bergamottin, which keeps the body's enzymes from breaking the statins down. The resulting high concentrations of the drug lead to liver damage, rhabdomyolysis (severe kidney damage) and other severe health problems, reports About.com.

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