If you’re not familiar with the pomegranate, it is a red fruit with a tough outer layer; only the juice and the seeds inside are edible. Pomegranate juice is available year round, but you can purchase fresh pomegranates in most grocery stores from September through January. When refrigerated in a plastic bag, pomegranates keep for up to 2 months. This fantastic little fruit recently made its way back into the news after some spectacular clinical results. Here’s what you need to know:
Compounds found only in pomegranates called punicalagins are shown to benefit the heart and blood vessels.
Recent medical research studied heart patients with severe carotid artery blockages. They were given an ounce of pomegranate juice each day for a year. Not only did study participants’ blood pressure lower by over 12 percent, but there was a 30 percent reduction in atherosclerotic plaque. Just as astounding, participants who did not take the pomegranate juice saw their atherosclerotic plaque increase by 9 percent.
Not only are pomegranates good for your heart and blood vessels but they have been shown to inhibit breast cancer, prostate cancer, colon cancer, leukemia and to prevent vascular changes that promote tumor growth in lab animals.
Pomegranate juice contains phytochemical compounds that stimulate serotonin and estrogen receptors, improving symptoms of depression and increasing bone mass in lab animals.
This is one fruit that you can’t afford to exclude from your diet!
Features of a Pomegranate
Most powerful anti-oxidant of all fruits
Potent anti-cancer and immune supporting effects
Inhibits abnormal platelet aggregation that could cause heart attacks, strokes and embolic disease
Lowers cholesterol and other cardiac risk factors
Lowers blood pressure
Shown to promote reversal of atherosclerotic plaque in human studies
May have benefits to relieve or protect against depression and osteoporosis