The Power of Grapefruit

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With its distinct flavor, the powerful taste of grapefruit is not for everyone. But with its high nutritional content and refreshing scent, more and more people are touting the ingredient as a skin-care secret. But what is it about the fruit that benefits the skin?

Rich in antioxidants and vitamins, grapefruit extract applied topically can provide an array of anti-aging benefits like evening skin tone and fighting off free radicals. When eaten, it provides the body with important nutrients essential for healthy skin.

“Internally, grapefruit is a great example of a fruit that is loaded with skin-protective antioxidants and also has a high water content, which helps keep your skin’s barrier (the outer layer) hydrated and more resistant to wrinkle-causing free-radical damage from the sun and daily pollution,” says Los Angeles dermatologist, Howard Murad, MD. “A great benefit of grapefruit is that it promotes the production of collagen, thus making the skin more plump and reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, keeping the skin looking younger and more supple.”

“Grapefruit has excellent astringent and exfoliating properties that are perfect for oily or acne-prone skin,” says Washington, DC, dermatologist Elizabeth Tanzi, MD. “It also increases the pH of the skin, which may reduce acne,” adds Dr. Murad. But when it comes to those suffering from rosacea, citrus may not be the answer. “Certain citrusy fruits such as grapefruit may irritate the condition. It’s important to identify the foods that affect you by tracking what you eat and evaluate how your skin reacts during the few hours after consumption,” says Dr. Murad.

Be careful using and eating grapefruit if you take prescription medication. There are several drugs that can have life-threatening consequences when combined with even the smallest hint of grapefruit.

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