Eating Grapefruit during Pregnancy – Is It Safe?

A pregnant woman holding a grapefruit near her belly

One of the most important practices for a pregnant woman is to make sure that she eats the right food items during the period of pregnancy. The diet of the mother is one of the most important aspects of pregnancy, as it plays a huge role in the development of the foetus.



Can you Eat Grapefruit during Pregnancy?

Grapefruit

For a pregnant woman, organic grapefruits are the best choice- this is because they are free from pesticides and any other chemicals, so there is no chance of the baby being harmed. You should also take care to wash the fruit thoroughly so that any chances of food-borne illnesses are reduced.





Nutritional Facts of Grapefruit

NUTRIENT AMOUNT
Calories 42kcal
Carbohydrates 10.66g
Protein 0.77g
Fibre 1.6g
Fat 0.14g
Vitamins
Vitamin C 33.3mg
Choline 7.7 mg
Folic acid 13mcg
Vitamin E .13 mg
Niacin 0.269mg
Riboflavin 0.020mg
Thiamin 0.037mg
Minerals
Potassium 148mg
Calcium 12mg
Iron 0.06mg
Magnesium 9mg
Zinc 0.07mg
Phosphorus 18mg

Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grapefruit

Is Grapefruit Juice Safe during Pregnancy?

Some women prefer eating the fruit, while the others prefer to consume it as a juice. In the case of grapefruit juice, it is important that the pregnant woman consumes it only if the juice is a hundred percent homemade. This is because, in packaged bottles of juice, most of the nutrients are lost during the manufacturing process.




Health Benefits of Eating Grapefruit during Pregnancy

Some of the health benefits include:

1. Blood Stress

Pre-eclampsia is a condition that affects around one in twelve pregnant ladies and results in the early birth of the child if it is not controlled with care. Grapefruit nutrition during pregnancy contains potassium and lycopene, which lower raised levels of pressure and prevent high blood pressure from occurring.





2. Cholesterol

Grapefruit has fibre and pectin, both of which help in reducing cholesterol by acting as natural vasodilators.

3. Insomnia

Grapefruit has been known to help pregnant women get sound sleep, especially in the third trimester. Most women become insomniac during this period, due to a combination of jittery nerves and sleeping disorders.




4. Weight Maintenance

During pregnancy, most people expect you to gain weight quickly. However, you must remember that an excessive amount of weight gain is not good, even if you are pregnant. Grapefruit has a low-calorie count, making it the perfect snack for expecting mothers.

5. Indigestion

Indigestion and heartburn are common in the case of pregnant women, as the expanding uterus reduces the space required for smooth functioning of the stomach.





6. Morning Sickness

Many mothers find themselves retching and vomiting in the morning, after they conceive. With the fibre and the sweet-sour taste of the grapefruit, the feeling of nausea can be tackled.

7. Anaemia

Anaemia is something that pregnant women must always be wary of, as it can hamper the development of the child in a huge manner. Vitamin B present in the grapefruit has been found to decrease the danger of anaemia in women, and it can be used both for preventing and reducing anaemia.




8. Asthma Prevention

It has been found that Vitamin C can reduce the chances of creating asthma in a child, and grapefruit contains high levels of this vital vitamin.

9. Swelling

In the last trimester of pregnancy, women find that their feet swell due to improper circulation. Grapefruit contains bioflavonoids and Vitamin C too, both of which reduce swelling in women.





10. Bone Density Loss

For pregnant women, calcium is one of the most important nutrients. This is important to ensure that proper bone formation occurs in the child, while the bone density of the mother is also maintained.

11. Hydration

Grapefruit has a high percentage of water, and enough electrolytes to ensure that the mother is never dehydrated.




12. Cold and Flu

Vitamin C present in the grapefruit can help combat many illnesses, including cold and flu.

13. Healthy Skin

Many people say that during pregnancy, the skin of the woman glows throughout- the reality is much harsher. However, Vitamin C present in the grapefruit can help you maintain a great skin tone, and give you healthy and balanced skin.





14. Cancer Prevention

Grapefruit has a range of antioxidants, which combats cancer cells- ranging from bust cancer to Oesophageal and belly cancer.

15. Diabetes

Grapefruit has a low sugar content, which makes it suitable for pregnant women. Diabetes mellitus has been found to occur in increasing frequency in pregnant women, especially in the second and third trimester. Therefore, grapefruit is a great snack for expecting mothers.




Recommended Intake of Grapefruit for Pregnant Women

A pregnant woman needs around 85 mg of vitamin C per day, and this can be obtained from one medium-sized grapefruit or eight ounces of grapefruit juice. This is the recommended amount of grapefruit for pregnant women. No matter how nutritious grapefruits are, consuming more than the recommended amount is not good for the mother.

Risks of Consuming Too Much Grapefruit When Pregnant

  • Grapefruit can increase the fructose levels in the mother, which can directly affect the growth of the foetus.
  • Those with health problems like hepatic or kidney illnesses, stomach ulcers, cystitis or a history of allergies are advised to not eat grapefruits.
  • One other thing to note is that grapefruit should not be consumed on an empty stomach.
  • If you are on any other medication, you must check with your doctor before consuming grapefruit.
  • You must also ensure that you only consume the required amount of grapefruit during pregnancy.

How to Pick the Right Grapefruit?

Picking the right grapefruit is easy, as you have to focus only on the texture of the skin- the colour does not matter at all. There should be no soft spots on the skin of the fruit. Also, pick a heavier grapefruit- since it has thick skin, the actual amount of flesh inside may be lesser than you think. Grapefruits do not have to refrigerated right away, as they ripen slower than conventional fruits. Only when they start to go bad, refrigeration is needed. It has been found that the membrane that separates the segments of the fruit contains large amounts of beneficial nutrients, but it can be hard to consume owing to a bitter taste. However, the taste is hardly felt if you choose to drink its juice.


Is Grapefruit Seed Extract Safe for Women?

Grapefruits may be safe to consume for pregnant women, but this does not mean that its fruit extract or seeds are safe for consumption. The seed extract has been found to be poisonous to the skin fibroblasts, so they are not recommended for consumption.

Best Ways to Add Grapefruit in Pregnancy Diet

There are a few ways in which grapefruit can be consumed safely by a pregnant woman.

  • Fresh juices, smoothies or as a part of a salad.
  • Grapefruits and other fruits can be combined to make a healthy cocktail.
  • Using the skin of the fruit, tea that helps you combat nausea can be made.

Grapefruit Recipes You Should Try

Grapefruit can be eaten by itself but it can also be eaten in combination with other fruits and vegetables. Below are some of them such as:

1. Grapefruit and Peach Salad

Fruit salad

What You Will Require


  • One large grapefruit
  • Two large, ripe peaches
  • A tablespoon of agave nectar
  • Half a teaspoon of orange blossom water
  • Ten fresh mint leaves
  • 50g of finely chopped pistachio nuts

How to Prepare

The first step is to combine agave nectar and orange blossom water in a small bowl. Now, you have to remove the skin of the grapefruit and then slice it. Similarly, slice the peaches and remove the pith from the pieces. All of these are to be mixed in the bowl, and some mint and pista can be added as a garnish.

Preparation Time – 5 minutes

Servings – 2


2. Grapefruit Smoothie

Grapefruit smoothie

What You Will Require

  • A peeled grapefruit with the seeds removed
  • A peeled and cored sweet apple
  • A large banana (ripe)
  • Unsweetened almond milk, orange juice and water (One or two cups)
  • Ice cubes
  • Half a teaspoon of fresh, chopped ginger

How to Prepare

Put all the ingredients in a blender, and switch it on until the consistency of the mixture is smooth and creamy. If you want it to be less thick, add ice or water. For sweetening the mixture, add apples or bananas.

Preparation Time – 10 minutes


Servings – 2

Grapefruit is one of the best fruits for a pregnant woman to consume, as it has a range of essential nutrients that benefit both the mother and the growing child. However, you must take care not to consume it in excess.

Also Read:

16 Fruits to Eat during Pregnancy
11 Vegetables to Eat during Pregnancy