Published: 09/15/2015 - Updated: 03/08/2020
Author: Dra. Loredana Lunadei, PhD
Grapes have several beneficial properties. They are small and juicy, they have a deliciously distinct flavor, and they are so very healthy for life. The nutritional properties contained in grapes make them highly recommendable for including in your diet, they are rich in vitamin C and B-complex vitamins as well.
This fruit comes from Europe and the Middle East, and they belong to the vitaceae family of the vitis genus.
They are widely known, and are used to create wine by fermenting its juice. Drinking grape juice fresh, however, is also healthy.
Properties of grapes: Nutritional view
Grapes are made up of 80% water and fiber. They are also a rich source of carbohydrates, which is why if you eat a lot of grapes, you may want to consider the amount of calories you have consumed.
As far as components go, they contain tannins, protein and fructose, carotenoids, vitamin A, B complex vitamins, and other vitamins like vitamin C, K, D, and E. They also contain potassium, making them excellent for patients with hypertension, or for preventing high blood pressure.
They are a good source of iron, an important mineral for preventing anemia, which also strengthens the immune system.
They also contain phosphorous, which alleviates fatigue and tiredness, as well as calcium, another important mineral for the body. Calcium helps prevent osteoporosis and muscle cramps.
Some of grape’s important compounds are located in their seeds and the skin. Flavonoids, for example, are found in the skin on grapes, and they are important antioxidants. They also moisturize skin and raise good cholesterol levels, or HDL.
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Benefits to eating grapes
This is an excellent fruit for fighting some types of health conditions, which is why eating grapes is highly recommendable.
Hypertension: thanks to their potassium and antioxidant content, grapes are a good idea. We advise eating grapes for breakfast for 10 days straight, either as the whole grape, or juiced.
For skin and hair: Grape seed oil is recognized for its properties in protecting hair against heat and environmental stresses. A few drops of this oil helps nourish skin and could even be useful for fighting acne.
For arthritis, skin and the stomach: It’s a good idea to drink grape juice, sweetened with a bit of natural honey.
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For the liver: grapes are one of the most widely used fruits for detoxifying the body and for cleansing the liver. That’s why detox diets sometimes include eating fresh grapes for a few days. This type of diet would ideally be performed under expert supervision.
Against stress: Thanks to their antioxidants, grapes fight free radicals, releasing their effects against stress. This fruit is recommended for people that create a lot of stress.
You can try one of these Grapes recipes
How to choose grapes
In order to choose the freshest grapes, you’ll need to evaluate their skin, which should be firm and have no marks on it. Choose grapes that are juice, and that don’t look wrinkled.
The color could affect the sweetness. Green grapes, for example, should be slightly yellow. Red grapes should have a more uniform color, without being discolored at all, while black grapes should be fairly dark.
It’s best to eat your grapes while still fresh, or rather, as soon as you buy them. If you are going to store them, you should do so in the fridge. Grapes could ferment at room temperature, increasing their rate of deterioration.
Refrigerated grapes could last from 10 to 15 days, but it’s best to store them before washing them, in order to keep them longer.
Another way of eating grapes is to eat raisins. Raisins are dehydrated grapes, which are full of energy and share many of the same properties as fresh grapes. They are a rich source of vitamins and potassium, and are a good choice for athletes.
Grapes are an excellent fruit for almost everyone, but they should be consumed in moderation. They have a laxative effect, so consuming too many grapes could cause diarrhea.
People that are allergic to compounds in grapes should also avoid them. Allergic reactions could manifest as a stomach ache, vomiting, headaches, dry mouth, and other symptoms.
Regularly consuming grapes could also interfere with some pharmaceuticals, like those that affect the liver. Medications prescribed for blood clotting could also be accentuated by consuming them. If you are going to regularly eat grapes, and you are taking medications, it is important that you consult your physician.
They are a good source of carbohydrates, which also means sugars, which is why if you have diabetes, you should also consume them in moderation.
And lastly, if you suffer from kidney stones, it’s best not to eat too many.
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