How many of you love to pick these glorious red fruits, pomegranates known for their amazing medicinal powers?
Pomegranate is a thick skinned super seedy fruit, with a brilliant red hue which is now touted as a wonder fruit by scientific researchers. The name pomegranate derives from the French word “pomegranate” or seeded apple. They are believed to have originated in Iran and brought to Egypt in 1600 BC, where it was not only revered as an important food source but was also widely used for its medicinal value. It was held in high esteem even during those times, as it is evident by their depiction in Egyptian paintings and tombs. Inspired by the abundance of jewel toned seeds within the bright red rind, pomegranate is considered to be a symbol of fertility and prosperity in some cultures.
Pomegranate Juice – A Superfood For Good Skin, Hair And Health:
Drinking pomegranate juice benefits our health and skin in a myriad of ways. It is one of the few fruits whose juice is as beneficial as the fruit itself. This is because the peel contains the maximum amount of antioxidants which are released in abundance when the fruit is squeezed while juicing. It is currently ranked alongside blue berries and green tea for its nutritional benefits.
Some people might find it a bit cumbersome to deal with the little seeds, which is why, extracting its juice is the best way to utilize the benefits of pomegranate juice. Drinking it allows for a quick and easy assimilation of all the nutrients found in the bloodstream by the body. In comparison to other fruits, pomegranates contain the maximum amount of anti-oxidants. It contains approximately 3 times more antioxidants than green tea and oranges.
A single glass of pomegranate juice can provide you with 40% of the daily requirement of folic acid and vitamins A, C, and E. Freshly squeezed pomegranate juice, being completely unprocessed, triumphs over packaged juice any day, as it retains the maximum number of vitamins. Make sure that the juice is unsweetened as sugar being inflammatory can counteract some of the health benefits of this fruit.
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Nutritional Value of Pomegranate:
Pomegranate is a great source of ellagic acid, and antioxidant and punicic acid, an omega 5 polyunsaturated fatty acid which is highly beneficial for cell regeneration and proliferation. The juice of this fruit is an exceptional source of vitamin A, C and E and minerals such as calcium, phosphorous, potassium, iron, folic acid, niacin, thiamin, folates and riboflavin.
Health Benefits of Pomegranate Juice:
Pomegranate has been used for medicinal purposes in the middle and Far East regions for over thousands of years. It was used as a tonic to heal ailments like ulcers and diarrhea. The juice of pomegranate contains antioxidants like anthocyanin and ellagic acid, compounds like gallic acids, and flavonoids like quercetin which offer protection from diabetes, heart diseases, osteoarthritis and several kinds of cancer.
1. Pomegranate Juice Improves Your Heart Health:
Pomegranate juice can have a great impact on health, particularly on the health of the heart, by keeping the arteries flexible and decreasing the inflammation in the lining of the blood vessels. It is known to reduce atherosclerosis, which is one of the leading causes of heart disease. It lowers the risk of blockage in the arteries which can cause a restriction in the flow of blood to the heart and brain. In other words it has an anti-atherogenic effect on the heart (1). It lowers the amount of LDL or bad cholesterol that is retained in the body and increases the amount of good cholesterol or HDL (2).
2. Pomegranate Juices Maintains Your Blood Sugar Levels:
Although pomegranate juice contains fructose, it does not elevate the blood sugar levels as other fruit juices do. Studies have shown that there was no significant increase in the blood sugar level of diabetic patients who drank this juice daily for a period of 2 weeks (3).
3. Pomegranate Juice Maintains Your Blood Pressure:
Pomegranates are also known to reduce high blood pressure (4). The juice reduces lesions and the inflammation of blood vessels in heart patients. It is a natural aspirin, which keeps the blood from coagulating and forming blood clots. It even acts as a blood thinner allowing for an unrestricted flow of blood through the body.
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4. Pomegranate Juice Reduces Risk Of Cancer:
Pomegranate juice eliminates free radicals from the body and inhibits the growth and development of cancer and other diseases. Its high contents of anti- oxidants stimulate the white blood cells to neutralize toxins in the body thereby promoting a strong and healthy immune system. Pomegranate is believed to induce apoptosis, a process where the cells destroy themselves. Daily intake of a glass of pomegranate juice can slow down the growth of cancerous cells in prostate cancer (5). Moreover it appears to block aromatase, an enzyme that converts androgen to estrogen, a hormone which plays a crucial role in the development of breast cancer (6).