Beware! Grapefruit Juice
Side Effects Can Be Serious

Wow, anyone who is looking for Grapefruit Juice Side Effects is in for a big surprise because, in my opinion, grapefruit juice really should come with a warning label. Aside from foods that give a lot of people allergic reactions, grapefruit juice might just be the most dangerous common food there is, in fact, it would be better to treat it like a drug than to treat it like a food!

It was first discovered that grapefruit juice could seriously interact with drugs in a study testing high blood pressure medications with alcohol interactions. The study director used grapefruit juice to cover up the taste of alcohol so that the study participants were not aware they had drunk alcohol (as necessary in a placebo controlled study).

Curiously, there was a problem, and people in the placebo and not placebo sides began to have large numbers of unexpected side effects. Lo and behold, it was discovered the grapefruit juice was the problem! 

Yes, it really is that powerful of a substance!  It’s a good thing you are here and reading this because everyone really should know about grapefruit juice side effects and make a smart choice about whether to drink it or not.

We'll Give You the Good News First
(Because That's How We Are!)

Before we get into the side effects of grapefruit juice, lets first give you the good news. Grapefruit juice contains many different antioxidants,  naringin, naringenin, and hesperetin, and bergapten, just to name a few (1) (2) .  Antioxidants can help to quench stress related chemicals that cause aging, as well as decreasing inflammation, potentially decreasing the risk for dementia, and may even be a potent cancer preventative. (3)

Unlike other studies on foods where they have to synthesize or concentrate the active chemicals in the foods to have any effect on the body, with grapefruit juice, the active chemicals become available to the body in doses that are equivalent to a single glass of juice. That’s good news for the health benefits and bad news for those who might experience side effects of grapefruit juice. 

Grapefruit Juice Side Effects
Are Too Many to List! 

Most antioxidants seem to have beneficial qualities, and even the antioxidants in grapefruit juice are often good for you in many varied ways, as they can be with grapefruit juice But these compounds can cause side effects from grapefruit juice ranging from mildly problematic to downright deadly. 

Cytochrome P450 Enzyme System

Medication interactions cause the vast majority of these problems. Grapefruit juice causes an inhibition of the cytochrome P450 enzyme system, the system that is responsible for the liver detoxification of many different medications. (5)

Caffeine and Grapefruit Juice

When you take a substance that is detoxified by these isoenzymes in your liver, you may not detoxify them nearly as quickly as you should, and this could cause medications to stay in your body for much longer periods of time than they do without the grapefruit juice. It makes most drugs more potent (even though it can make some drugs less potent, as well). 

If you drink a few cups of caffeine-containing beverages, like coffee or tea, some of the grapefruit juice side effects could make you jittery, cause insomnia, or even cause heart palpitations. It's the same effect as if you drank too much caffeine and experienced Caffeine Side Effects

Some people who love grapefruit juice in the mornings may even be habituated to using grapefruit juice to make their caffeine last them longer throughout the day, even know they may not even know they are doing this!  Before you try to use grapefruit juice side effects to make your coffee fix last longer, ensure you understand the potential risks of doing so by finishing this whole article and weighing the pros and cons. 

Grapefruit Juice and Medications
Are Risky Business

If you take any prescription or non-prescription medications, be extremely cautious, since grapefruit juice side effects could lead to the normal drug dosage acting as if you took 2 or 3 times that dose! Or if you take a drug more than once a day, the drug might last for much longer, causing toxicity and even overdose, even though you took the same dose you always take!

These interactions can really be serious,and there are so many interactions that it would be impossible to list them all. Some of the serious and deadly reactions that could be experienced are:

  • Statins: Statin Drug Side Effects are already very serious. But adding grapefruit juice on top of these already dangerous drugs can lead to Statin Drug Rhabdomyolysis, a very serious and even deadly condition where the muscle cells die rapidly(4)
  • Hypertensive Drugs: Drugs for high blood pressure ending in 'pine', such as nifedipine, may cause the blood pressure to reduce drastically, causing dizziness and even fainting.  (5)
  • Oral Diabetic Pills: serious episodes of hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), can occur as a grapefruit juice side effect
  • Coumadin: Blood thinners such as coumadin are extremely dangerous to take with grapefruit juice. 

There are so many grapefruit juice side effects with different medications that it would be ridiculous to try to list them all. Just know that there are so many that even if you just take an over the counter drug, be sure to check for any interactions if you also drink grapefruit juice. 

Even Healthy People Could be at Risk

Healthy people aren't immune from grapefruit juice side effects either. A study done on young, healthy people not taking any medications at all showed a condition called QT Prolongation or Long QT Syndrome. QTS is the "...leading cause of mortality among young athletes." (6) So, even if you don't think you have any risk when you take grapefruit juice, you still might have problems. 

Should Grapefruit Juice 
Have a Warning Label? 

As you can see, grapefruit juice is serious business, and should actually be treated like a drug. Grapefruit juice side effects could effect so many people in so many various ways that, really, it should come with a warning label! I hope you share this article with loved ones, as this common drink has the ability to harm millions of people, just from a simple common beverage. 

Have You Had Problems from Grapefruit Juice?

If you've had problems from grapefruit juice, tell us your story. Whether it's funny, sad, tragic or heartwarming- we want to hear it!!

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