Does Drinking Grapefruit Juice Lower Blood Pressure?
A study led by Shela Gorinstein of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem suggests that consuming grapefruit, particularly red grapefruit, can lower your triglyceride levels. If you reduce your triglycerides, an artery-clogging fat, blood flows more easily to and from your vital organs, naturally lowering your blood pressure. But if you take blood pressure medications, combining them with grapefruit could prove dangerous.
Blood Pressure Drugs
Combining blood pressure medication with grapefruit juice can lower your blood pressure too drastically because having grapefruit in your body stops your body’s CYP34A enzyme from being able to metabolize medication. This means that medications stay in your system longer than intended and, if you keep taking the medication, the drug will build up in your system. If blood pressure medications build up in your system, your blood pressure could drop to dangerously low levels. Your heart could stop beating.
- Combining blood pressure medication with grapefruit juice can lower your blood pressure too drastically because having grapefruit in your body stops your body’s CYP34A enzyme from being able to metabolize medication.
- If blood pressure medications build up in your system, your blood pressure could drop to dangerously low levels.
Calcium Channel Blockers
Ribs Cracking and Stretching
If you take calcium channel blockers, a type of blood pressure medication, do not mix them with grapefruit. Channel blockers known to cause serious side effects when mixed with grapefruit include felodipine and nifedipine. Calcium channel blockers work by preventing calcium from getting into your blood vessels and heart. This lowers your blood pressure. If you take any type of blood pressure medication, ask your doctor if you can safely combine it with grapefruit juice.
- If you take calcium channel blockers, a type of blood pressure medication, do not mix them with grapefruit.
If you have high blood pressure, you may also have high cholesterol. High blood pressure makes it easier for cholesterol to collect in your arteries, and the cholesterol buildup in your arteries puts added pressure on your heart. Since the two conditions are linked, your doctor may prescribe drugs to lower your cholesterol as well as your blood pressure. If you take statins, a class of cholesterol-lowering drugs, do not combine them with grapefruit juice.
- If you have high blood pressure, you may also have high cholesterol.
- Since the two conditions are linked, your doctor may prescribe drugs to lower your cholesterol as well as your blood pressure.
Red Grapefruit Juice
The Side Effects of Lexapro & Grapefruit
Gorinstein’s grapefruit study, published in the “Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry” in 2006, showed that consuming grapefruit may help naturally lower your cholesterol and, in turn, blood pressure. The participants of Gorinstein’s study – 57 men and women with high blood pressure – consumed grapefruit for a month. At the end of the month, those who consumed grapefruit enjoyed a reduction in their triglycerides, a type of lipid that contributes to your total cholesterol levels. Red grapefruit proved more helpful than white grapefruit in lowering triglycerides. While drinking red grapefruit juice may prove effective in naturally lowering your blood pressure, if you take any kind of medication -- not just blood pressure or cholesterol-lowering drugs -- consult a medical professional before adding grapefruit juice to your diet.
- Gorinstein’s grapefruit study, published in the “Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry” in 2006, showed that consuming grapefruit may help naturally lower your cholesterol and, in turn, blood pressure.
Ribs Cracking and Stretching
The Side Effects of Lexapro & Grapefruit
The Effects of Grapefruit on Synthroid
Grapefruit & Celexa
Can You Eat Grapefruit While Taking Crestor?
Does Grapefruit Juice Affect Ramipril?
Food to Avoid While Taking Cialis
Niacin and Impotence
Does Pomegranate Juice Interfere With Prescription Drugs?
Can I Eat Grapefruit While Taking Cymbalta?
- "Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry"; Red Grapefruit Positively Influences Serum Triglyceride Level in Patients Suffering from Coronary Atherosclerosis: Studies in Vitro and in Humans; Shela Gorinstein, et al.; 2006
- American Heart Association: About High Blood Pressure
- “The New York Times”; Experts Reveal the Secret Powers of Grapefruit Juice; Nicholas Bakalar; March 2006
- Grapefruit, raw, pink and red, all areas. USDA FoodData Central. Updated April 2019.
- Vitamin C - Fact Sheet for Health Professionals. National Institutes of Health (NIH). Office Of Dietary Supplements. Updated July 2019
- Chow O, Barbul A. Immunonutrition: Role in wound healing and tissue regeneration. Adv Wound Care (New Rochelle). 2014;3(1):46–53. doi:10.1089/wound.2012.0415
- Vitamin A Fact Sheet for Professionals. National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements. February 14, 2020
- Rasmussen HM, Johnson EJ. Nutrients for the aging eye. Clin Interv Aging. 2013;8:741–748. doi:10.2147/CIA.S45399
- Chen P, Zhang W, Wang X, Zhao K, Negi D, Zhou L, et al. Lycopene and risk of prostate cancer: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Medicine (Baltimore). 2015;94(33):e1260. doi:10.1097/MD.0000000000001260
- Vissers MCM, Das AB. Potential mechanisms of action for vitamin C in cancer: Reviewing the evidence. Front Physiol. 2018;9:809. doi:10.3389/fphys.2018.00809
- Dow CA, Going SB, Chow H-HS, Patil BS, Thomson CA. The effects of daily consumption of grapefruit on body weight, lipids, and blood pressure in healthy, overweight adults. Metabolism. 2012;61(7):1026-1035. doi:10.1016/j.metabol.2011.12.004
- Zhao CN, Meng X, Li Y, et al. Fruits for prevention and treatment of cardiovascular diseases. Nutrients. 2017;9(6):598. doi:10.3390/nu9060598
- Panche AN, Diwan AD, Chandra SR. Flavonoids: An overview. J Nutr Sci. 2016;5:e47. doi:10.1017/jns.2016.41
- Bourrier T, Pereira C. Allergy to citrus juice. Clin Transl Allergy. 2013;3(Suppl 3):P153. Published 2013 Jul 25. doi:10.1186/2045-7022-3-S3-P153
- Grapefruit Juice and Some Drugs Don't Mix. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. FDA Consumer Updates. Updated July 2017.
- Grapefruit juice and statins. Harvard Medical School - Healthbeat. Harvard Health Publishing. Updated September 2019.
- Bailey DG, Dresser G, Arnold JM. Grapefruit-medication interactions: Forbidden fruit or avoidable consequences?. CMAJ. 2013;185(4):309-16. doi:10.1503/cmaj.120951
- Kanellis A, Manganaris G. Fruit Ripening. (Nath P, Bouzayen M, Mattoo A, Pech J, eds.). Oxfordshire: CABI; 2014:110.
- Wanlapa S, Wachirasiri K, Sithisam-ang D, Suwannatup T. Potential of selected tropical fruit peels as dietary fiber in functional foods. International Journal of Food Properties. 2015;18(6):1306-1316. doi:10.1080/10942912.2010.535187
- Murphy MM, Barraj LM, Rampersaud GC. Consumption of grapefruit is associated with higher nutrient intakes and diet quality among adults, and more favorable anthropometrics in women, NHANES 2003-2008. Food Nutr Res. 2014;58:10.3402/fnr.v58.22179. doi:10.3402/fnr.v58.22179
Kathryn Gilhuly is a wellness coach based in San Diego. She helps doctors, nurses and other professionals implement lifestyle changes that focus on a healthy diet and exercise. Gilhuly holds a Master of Science in health, nutrition and exercise from North Dakota State University.