Like most fruits, pomegranates contain plenty of vitamins and fiber. In fact this ‘super fruit’ can provide us with a whole host of health benefits you’ve probably never even thought of..
The pomegranate is originally from the Middle East and has since been cultivated in Europe, South East Asia and more recently in California and Arizona in the US.
Since its popular development as a healthy drink, pomegranate health benefits have been promoted far and wide. A lot of research has been conducted on the health properties pomegranates may provide, and although more studies are needed, the large amounts of nutrients they contain go a long way to promoting good, overall health and preventing certain health conditions.
It goes without saying that fruit and vegetables are an important part of our daily diet to keep us fit and well. All fruits contain a certain amount of beneficial nutrients like vitamins, fiber, antioxidants and folic acid. Pomegranates contain a whole host of them and taste delicious too!
If you aren’t already eating a pomegranate for breakfast or drinking its delicious juice, these health benefits might just convince you to start:
An Antioxidant Power House
As you can imagine, the major health benefit of pomegranates come from their high levels of antioxidants; specifically polyphenols, tannins and anthocyanins.
It has been shown that consuming a diet rich in natural antioxidants, like those from fruits and vegetables, may help protect against free radical damage.
The antioxidants found in pomegranate are excellent at fighting free radicals which cause various types of diseases and premature ageing.
Quite simply, pomegranate contains high amounts of the antioxidants your body needs to stay healthy and strong. I always used to drink green tea for this reason, but now I know how effective pomegranate is, I drink pomegranate juice instead. And it tastes so much better than green tea, which really is an acquired taste!
Promotes A Healthy Heart
The heart benefits from the antioxidants by receiving more oxygen, which can help prevent heart disease. It also reduces bad LDL cholesterol levels, so keeping arteries from clotting and helping to prevent atherosclerosis, stroke and heart attacks.
Helps Prevent Osteoarthritis
Different studies have discovered that pomegranate juice acts as an enzyme inhibitor like (MSM Does) which may prevent cartilage deterioration.
Preliminary research albeit some of it on mice, has evaluated the antioxidant nature of pomegranate juice in its usefulness in fighting certain forms of cancer including breast, skin and prostate cancer.
Lowers Blood Pressure
One study showed that drinking 1.7 ounces of pomegranate juice per day lowered blood pressure by as much as 5 percent.
Good for Your Teeth
Research has shown that the antibacterial compounds found in pomegranate juice may be a natural way to prevent dental plaque.
Here are some pomegranate nutrition statistics that may interest you:
- A single pomegranate contains approx 40% of our recommended daily dose of vitamin C
- It is a rich source of vitamins A, E and folic acid.
- A pomegranate contains 3 times the levels of antioxidants found in Green Tea and red wine. In fact it contains more antioxidants than any other natural food source.
- It is fat free and high in fiber.
How to Include Pomegranate into Your Daily Diet
There are plenty of ways to get your daily fix of pomegranate, and the most popular choice is to drink it as a juice.
Pure, unsweetened pomegranate juice ensures you get 100% of the nutrients without any additives or preservatives. The pomegranate juice I drink is organic with nothing added. It has quite a shape taste and I like to dilute mine with a small amount of water.
Add pomegranate to a smoothie recipe, or mix with plain yogurt, or cottage cheese.
Start the day with a whole pomegranate and male extra. Simply cut in half and scoop out the arils with a spoon. The seeds are nutrient dense and you also benefit from the natural juice.
Use them to add a burst of flavor, and color to your salads, dips, rice and other grain pilaf dishes, and desserts.
Pomegranate paste made with molasses is delicious and can be used as a dip and salad dressing recipes.
Pomegranate juice is used extensively in dishes in the Middle East for stews and sorbets. The juice is also made into pomegranate molasses and added to desserts, served with foie gras and cheese plates.