What is the Grapefruit Diet?

By Diana Sanchez, Staff Writer

Photo by Sarah Gualtieri on Unsplash

Ah, the Grapefruit Diet. Grapefruit on its own has somewhat of a reputation for facilitating weight loss. Many dieters claim to lose up to 10 lbs in 10 days of following this diet. But what is the Grapefruit Diet? And does it really work?

What is the Grapefruit Diet?

The Grapefruit diet, otherwise known as the Hollywood diet,  is one of the better-known fad diets around. It is, most definitely, a fad diet because, while it may lead to weight loss, it is not a sustainable diet that you can stay on for long periods of time.

There are several variations of the diet but typically does not last for longer than 3 weeks. Why a grapefruit? According to those who support this diet, grapefruit is credited with having special enzymes that help burn off the fat of other foods you eat in conjunction with it. 

In one of the most popular versions of the diet, it is recommended you eat no more than 800 calories a day, which is drastically low for anyone. This could explain why Grapefruit dieters lose so much weight in such a short amount of time.

On the Grapefruit diet, you would eat ½ a grapefruit before breakfast, lunch, and dinner. An example of the grapefruit diet would be:


Bacon and eggs


Salad with your choice of meat


Salad with your choice of meat

Before Bed

1 glass of tomato juice OR skim milk

As you can see, the Grapefruit diet is relatively low in carbs. High-fat meats, coffee, and tea are allowed and dieters are encouraged to drink plenty of water. Exercise is not encouraged as the calorie intake is very low. 

Pros and Cons of the Grapefruit Diet


Grapefruit is a healthy fruit, and introducing more fruit into your diet is generally a very good thing.


The Grapefruit diet is extremely low calorie, and therefore while you may drop 10 lbs (or more) while you are on it, this will not be an opportunity for dieters to learn to eat healthier long-term.

There is also no scientific evidence that grapefruit really does help burn more fat.


If you need to lose weight quickly, say for an upcoming event, the Grapefruit diet will certainly give you short-term results. However, if you’re tired of yo-yo dieting, losing and gaining weight, you’re better off choosing a sustainable diet that will teach you healthier eating strategies that can keep you in maintenance weight for years to come.

If you’re looking for more sustainable diets, check out these diets below:
What is the DASH Diet? 
What is the MIND Diet? 
What is the 5 Bite Diet? 
What is the Raw Food Diet? 
What is the Paleo Diet? 
Is Keto Right for Me? 
What is Intermittent Fasting? 
Is a Vegan Diet Right for Me?

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