Monday, October 3, 2011

My Pre-Workout Pick-Me-Up

Ruby red fresh squeezed grapefruit juice

I have done what some of my friends say is the unthinkable - I've given up having coffee in the morning. Instead, I have fresh squeezed ruby red grapefruit juice.  

Citrus fruits are known for being particularly rich in vitamin C, an essential nutrient for human health; grapefruits are no exception. Half a ruby red grapefruit packs only 36 calories but nearly 47 milligrams of vitamin C --- 78 percent of the recommended daily value for this important antioxidant nutrient. Vitamin C serves many functions in the body. In addition to supporting proper function of the immune system, vitamin C is needed for healthy gums, protecting the body's cells from damage, building collagen, wound healing and enhancing absorption of the trace mineral iron. It also just makes you feel good.  I find that I have a spring in my step when I head off to the gym.  When I drank coffee before working out, I'd let negative thoughts bother me while I walked.

Ruby red grapefruit are a bargain at the corner fruit stand - 2 for a dollar!  Through some haggling, the vendor sold me 7 of them for $4 earlier today.

It is believed grapefruit can help lower cholesterol.  Researchers concluded that, for individuals with coronary artery disease and elevated lipid levels who were not responsive to traditional cholesterol-lowering therapies, adding one cup of grapefruit or a half-cup of grapefruit juice daily to their diets offered positive benefits.
Ruby red grapefruit is rich in lycopene, a carotenoid with anti-cancer benefits. Lycopene, responsible for the red pigment of fruits and vegetables, is found in abundance in tomatoes, watermelon, papaya, guava and pink grapefruit. According to an article published in the journal "Cancer Letters" in October 2008, oral lycopene is well absorbed and utilized by the body's tissues.

There's even a grapefruit juice diet.  Basically, it calls for drinking an 8 ounce glass of grapefruit juice with each meal.  This diet has been around since the 1930's.  Today, researchers believe the high fiber content and low calorie nature of the fruit may reduce insulin levels and make dieters feel full and eat fewer calories. 

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