The body’s natural process of taking stored fat and turning it into energy has just been linked to a naturally occuring component in grapefruit.
Researchers from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) discovered that naringenin, found in grapefruit, triggers several beneficial processes in the liver. Their report can be found in the online journal PLoS ONE. “The liver behaves as if fasting, breaking down fatty acids instead of carbohydrates,” explained Martin L. Yarmush, MD, PhD, one of the paper’s authors and director of the MGH Center for Engineering in Medicine. “It is a process which is similar to the Atkins diet, without many of the side effects.” Many other products used for weight loss damage the liver, but “Remarkably, naringenin is a dietary supplement with a clear safety record. Evidence suggests it might actually protect the liver from damage,” said Yaakov Nahmias, PhD, the paper’s senior author from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.