History and Benefits of Grapefruit Essential Oil

Grapefruit Essential Oil

The smell of citrus is so energizing, uplifting, and mood enhancing it's no wonder it's a favorite in soaps, shampoos, room sprays, and perfumes around the world.

Grapefruit or Citrus paradisi Essential Oil is made by cold-pressing the peel to extract the delicate oil which has a fresh, tangy, refreshing smell. Fruit experts believe that the grapefruit could be a hybrid of the sweet orange fruit and the pomelo. Grapefruit is now grown in the U.S, China, India, South Africa and in some South American countries.

This oil is extremely rich in antioxidants, primarily vitamin C. Grapefruit has been used historically to aide in healthy digestion, boost immune system function by clearing the lymphatic system and ease muscle stiffness. It also has the power to clear oily skin associated with acne and excessive sebum production.

Modern research has also suggested that grapefruit can blast away cellulite. Researchers have also stated that just a drop of grapefruit oil in a glass of water can help trigger the mind to feel satiated. For these reasons, grapefruit essential oil is regularly used in diet advertising along with other citrus fruits.

Grapefruit blends well with many essential oils but bergamot, clary sage, lavender, and patchouli are a few of my personal favorites. One word of caution however, avoid prolonged exposure to the sun soon after the application of grapefruit oil. It is considered phototoxic and could cause skin irritation.

Fun fact: Grapefruit is an antiseptic and can be used on wounds to prevent tetanus.

The history of the origin of grapefruit is quite interesting. First, the pomelo used to be called a shaddock, or shattuck until about the mid 19th century. An Englishman named captain Shaddock supposedly left shaddock seeds in Barbados or Jamaica, depending on the source of information during the mid 18th century, and is
given credit for the creation of the grapefruit. The grapefruit is first documented in 1750 by Rev. Griffith Huges in the book the Natural History of Barbados, where the name of the grapefruit was literally translated as the 'forbidden fruit.' However historians cant find records of Captain Shaddock in any government or private shipping records during the time period that he was supposedly creating grapefruits (1). It has also been stated that grapefruits are a hybrid of the sweet orange and the pomelo, but since the history of this fruit is so shrouded in mystery, I'm going to guess that the creator, not an Englishman, decided to put grapefruits on earth for our eating and smelling pleasure.

The mystery behind the elusive grapefruit thickens, and although no one seems to know where grapefruits specifically come from, citron seeds were first found in a Mesopotamian excavation ( modern day Iraq), of an ancient Sumerian city of Nippur. Since the Sumerians were 'black-headed people' with Kemet being their twin city in many regards. Low and behold once again citrus fruits were cultivated first by Africans and exported around the globe by the world travelling seamen.

(1) Mystery of the forbidden fruit: Historical epilogue of the grapefruit (citrus paradisi) by J Kumamoto R.W Scora H.W. Lawton W.A Clerx