Pomegranate, having the scientific name Punica granatum, is a deciduous shrub. The shrub or the tree is generally small with the average height between 16 and 26 feet. The season for the pomegranate fruits is from the month of September to February for the Northern Hemisphere whereas it is March to May for the Southern Hemisphere. The juice is used for baking, cooking, garnishing meals, preparing juice blends, manufacturing alcoholic beverages and smoothies. The fruit had its origin in Iran and has been traditionally cultivated in the Mediterranean region and the north of India. It was brought to America towards the later part of the 16th century. It has been usually considered to be a mascot of fertility.
How do pomegranates help you?
• Pomegranates contain two very unique compounds that play an active health role. The two compounds are known as Punicalagins and Punicic acid. The first one is a very strong antioxidant and generally occurs in the peel of the fruit and its juice. The power of the antioxidant is rather high and has been concluded to be roughly three times those of green tea and red wine. Punicic acid, also referred to as the pomegranate seed oil, is a sort of fatty acid and has rather strong health benefits.
• Pomegranates also contain good dosages of the nutrients Vitamin C, Vitamin K, folate and dietary fibre.
• Chronic inflammations; which include cancer, heart diseases, type 2 diabetes, obesity and Alzheimer’s disease; could be effectively handled by consuming pomegranate that has potent anti-inflammatory traits. These traits are propelled by Punicalagins.
• Studies have established that pomegranate could substantially decrease the inflammatory action within the digestive tract. It could fight colon cancer and breast cancer as well. Also, it was found out that the consumption of about 250 ml of the juice extracted from pomegranate for a period extending upto 12 weeks decreased the markers of inflammation namely interleukin and CRP by 30 percent and 32 percent respectively.
• A thoroughly researched study conducted in 2005 found out that pomegranate juice consumed over a period of three months substantially improved the flow of blood to the heart and reduced the possibilities of coronary attacks.
• Pomegranates have been found to exert beneficial effects for curing arthritis as well. Laboratory studies have found out that the fruits’ extracts have the ability to prevent enzymes that can hurt joints for people suffering from osteoarthritis.