5 Sweet Reasons To Celebrate Pomegranate Month

Pomegranate is a very unique fruit.

It produces a sweet juice that is delicious on its own, and pomegranate seeds that can complement both sweet and savory dishes.

They are also incredibly healthy, much more so than many other fruits. To celebrate National Pomegranate Month we’ve compiled 5 delicious reasons to give them a try:

1. Pomegranates Contain Unique Compounds With Medicinal Properties

Aside from the high concentration of fiber, vitamin C, vitamin K and potassium found in the edible seeds (arils) of a pomegranate, they also contain two unique substances with medicinal properties.

Punicic Acid

Also known as pomegranate seed oil, Punicic acid is the main fatty acid in the seeds. It is a type of conjugated linoleic acid and thought to be responsible for many of its health benefits.

Punicalagins

Punicalagins are powerful antioxidants found in the juice and peel of a pomegranate. They are so powerful that pomegranate juice has been found to have three times the antioxidant activity of red wine and green tea (1).

Note that many store-bought varieties of pomegranate juice actually contain minimal amounts of pomegranate (less than 2 percent) and therefore don’t carry the beneficial nutrients. This is why several pomegranate juice manufacturers have been charged with making false health claims.

Whole pomegranates that you buy and prepare yourself certainly carry all the nutrients and health benefits.

2. Pomegranate Juice Can Lower Blood Pressure

Researchers have now started to look at the cardiovascular effects of pomegranate juice, particularly on those with high blood pressure.

Studies have found that consuming around 5 oz (150 mL) of pomegranate juice daily for 2 weeks can lower both systolic (top reading) and diastolic (bottom reading) blood pressure by clinically significant amounts (23).

It is thought that pomegranate is a fantastic source of the signalling molecule called Nitric Oxide, which tells the cells in your arteries to soften and relax. Softer arteries remain thin and elastic, and encounter less resistance, which helps the heart to pump at reduced pressure (45).

Although researchers aren’t certain, there is evidence that pomegranate juice consumed daily may interact with several blood pressure medications such as ACE inhibitors. For that reason, be sure to ask your doctor before you drink pomegranate juice regularly.

3. Pomegranate Juice Lowers LDL “bad” cholesterol

In line with the blood pressure benefits, pomegranate may help improve cholesterol ratios, which are another marker of heart disease.

Studies have shown that both pomegranate juice and pomegranate seed oil can significantly lower LDL “bad” cholesterol and improve the triglyceride:HDL ratio in those with existing high cholesterol  (78).

Similarly to those taking blood pressure medications, if you take statin drugs to manage high cholesterol you should check with your doctor before consuming pomegranate daily.

4. Pomegranate Appears to Have Strong Anti-Cancer Properties

Prostate cancer is the most common type of cancer in men, and breast cancer is the most common type in women.

Test tube studies have shown that pomegranate extract can slow down cancer cell reproduction in both prostate and breast tissue, and even induce apoptosis (cell death) in the cancerous cells (91011). Pomegranate consumption has also been associated with a lower risk of skin cancer.

Unfortunately laboratory studies are quite limited, and much more research on humans is needed before we can make stronger recommendations.

5. Healthy Alternative For Sugar, Honey and Other Sweeteners

Did I mention pomegranate seeds are sweet? Really sweet.

This means they are a great alternative to sugar, honey and other sweeteners and add a bit of color too.

Try add pomegranate seeds on your porridge, on cheese and crackers, or even on your salad to give it some zest. There’s plenty of ways to include more pomegranate to your diet.

Related
Fast, Delicious and Healthy Potato Curry With Fresh Peas
3 Ways to Boost Willpower to Avoid Overeating During the Holidays
7 Spices Loaded With Serious Flavor and Health Benefits

72 comments

Siyus Copetallus
Siyus C3 years ago

Thank you for sharing.

SEND
Sonia Minwer Barakat Requ

Good to know thanks for sharing

SEND
Rebekka Helgesen Hass
Rebekka Hass3 years ago

love pomegranate. thank you.

SEND
Cat Tkach
Cat Tkach3 years ago

luv them

SEND
Kamia T.
Kamia T3 years ago

Unfortunately I've never been able to develop a taste for its tartness, and when I tried growing one, it was just too much of a pain to get what little fruit and juice that was available out, either.

SEND
Natalie S.
Natalie S3 years ago

I really appreciate the articles about fruit and vegetables that are in season because it's so easy to take them for granted and make no effort to include them in our meal plans - thank you!

SEND
mrs m.
Linda M3 years ago

I prefer them in the summer, and often outside where I can make a mess, ha, ha.

SEND
Claudia Acosta
Claudia A3 years ago

Thank you for the info.

SEND
Janis K.
Janis K3 years ago

Thanks for sharing.

SEND