'Lavender Gem' tangelo

hosenemesis(SoCal Sunset 19 USDA 8b)February 11, 2012

I just ate a 'Lavender Gem' tangelo.

It was the most delicious citrus fruit I have ever eaten.

It tasted kind of like a sweet Oro Blanco grapefruit without the bitter pith. It peels like a tangelo, and it's seedless. The perfect fruit. Now to find out if it can be eaten by people who are not supposed to eat grapefruit...

Renee

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hosenemesis(SoCal Sunset 19 USDA 8b)

Too much grapefruit heritage. Oh well.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2012 at 12:15AM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

Renee, I love, love, LOVE mine!! Yes, true, BUT, you can talk to the doctor about other cholesterol-lowering medications that do not interact with flurocoumarins! No need to avoid grapefruits, pummelos and their hybrids, then. And the 'Lavender Gem' or Wekiwa (pronounced Wa-KEE-va, and not WI-kee-wa) tangelolo (yup, you read that right as it is a cross between a grapefruit and a tangelo, thus technically making it a tangelolo), is a fantastic citrus fruit, and does very well in my area. It is super delicious, and very interesting. So, check with the doc about switching up your meds if possible so you can again enjoy all those lovely, fantastic and healthy grapefruit/pummelos and their respective hybrids.

Patty S. (RN)

Here is a link that might be useful: UC Riverside Citrus Variety Collection: Wekiwa

    Bookmark   February 15, 2012 at 8:45PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

Okay, Renee, I wanted to provide more info for you, and others who are are taking certain cholesterol-lowering statin medications which interact with Bergamottin, which is the particular furanocoumarin found in grapefruits, pummelos and their respective hybrids to varying degrees (sorry for the previous misspelling). The statins that interact with Bergamottin are atorvastatin (Lipitor), lovastatin (Mevacor) and simvastatin (Zocor). Bergamottin interacts with certain enzyme systems in the body, such as cytochrome P-450 and P-glycoprotein which are responsible for breaking down certain statins (as well as other drugs), into more usable chemicals and transporting them in the body. When you consume grapefruits or pummelos (or their hybrids) around the time you take your statin medication, the action of Bergamottin prevents these enzyme systems from breaking down the drug, which causes certain statins to accumulate in high amounts in the body. This can be very dangerous and can cause a variety of health problems, such as liver damage or a rare condition called rhabdomyolysis (severe muscle and kidney damage).

However, the good news is there are a group of statins that apparently do not seem use these enzyme systems, and therefore are not affected in the same way or to the same profound degree. Those statins are rosuvastatin (Crestor), pravastatin (Pravachol), fluvastatin (Lescol) and pitavastatin (Livalo). Now, it's still judicious to time ingestion of grapefruits & pummelos at a different time than the time you normally take one of these latter statins, to avoid any possible accumulation of the medication, just to be safe.

So, if you are one of those folks who really loves grapefruits, pummelos and their hybrids, but are taking a statin affected by Bergamottin, ask your doctor if they would consider switching you to one of the statins not so affected, and/or lowering your statin if your cholesterol levels can handle the lower dose. Certainly worth investigating! If you need to provide your doctor with resources around this information, I found an excellent, consise article written by Jennifer Moll, a contributor to About.com and a PharmD. Her article is well-written and very well sourced, see link below.

Patty S.

Here is a link that might be useful: About.com Cholesterol: Can I Take Statins and Grapefruit Together?

    Bookmark   February 15, 2012 at 10:47PM
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hosenemesis(SoCal Sunset 19 USDA 8b)

Great info- my father-in-law will be interested in it especially. Thank you, Patty!
Renee

    Bookmark   February 16, 2012 at 9:36PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

You're very welcome, Renee :-) This is an area of interest for me. Dr. Kahn at the UC Riverside Citrus Variety Collection (she's a professor at UCR as well as the curator of the Collection) suggested I pursue a PhD in Citrus Research, with a specialty in molecular research to complement my nursing. I'd love to study how to create citrus varieties with lower furanocoumarins. I find this fascinating. If I wasn't so old, I might really seriously entertain this!

Patty S.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2012 at 11:09AM
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hosenemesis(SoCal Sunset 19 USDA 8b)

I went back to grad school at 40. I'm thinking about doing it again. Why not? You only live once.

Renee

    Bookmark   February 18, 2012 at 12:05AM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

Thanks for the vote of confidence, Renee. I feel like I'd be such an old person in class, egads. But, Dr. Kahn felt they could get funding to cover my current salary (not sure if she realizes how much a registered nurse makes these days), while I completed the doctorate. Then, work for UC Riverside. I have to confess, it would be pretty cool. If I were a tad bit closer, I think I would seriously pursue it. But, I'm about an hour and 15 mins. from the campus without traffic. Just far enough to have it be a deal breaker, unless I could do the bulk of the work at home. Which would be highly doubtful, as I'd be in a lab much of the time. Still, I might just feel things out to see what it would entail.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2012 at 4:02PM
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NorCalNiko(USDA 9 Sunset 16/17)

Hi everyone... Any idea where I could pick up a Lavender Gem? I'm in the SF Bay Area, but would be happy with a shipper.

I've got space for two citrus trees. This sounds like a good one! I've got a Meyer Lemon and a Key Lime. Any suggestions for the last slot?

    Bookmark   February 23, 2012 at 7:34PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

NorCal, you might want to check with your local Calif. Rare Fruit Growers group. My local citrus grower here in Vista grows them, so I'm really lucky to be able to get them. Not sure if they ship, but you can always call them to ask. The variety may not be on their web site, but they do grow them.

Patty S.

Here is a link that might be useful: Clausen's Nursery

    Bookmark   February 24, 2012 at 12:17AM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

NorCal, I just thought. Monterey Bay Nursery up your way grows the Weikwa tangelolo. Give them a call and see what retail nursery they ship to. I can special order anything they grow through Armstrong Nursery down in my area. I'm sure they have the same agreement with a nursery center in your area. They are a great wholesale nursery that specializes in many unusual citrus cultivars.

Here is a link that might be useful: Monterey Bay Nursery

    Bookmark   February 24, 2012 at 12:22AM
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NorCalNiko(USDA 9 Sunset 16/17)

Thanks Patty. I'll check it out.

-Niko.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2012 at 11:50AM
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