The Power of Pomegranates: 5 Health Benefits You Cannot MissLuke Coutinho
From mythology, poetry, and religious scriptures to scientific journals and Ayurveda – pomegranates appear in various texts throughout time. It has been used for thousands of years as a medicine in different civilizations and grows abundantly in India.
Let us discuss what makes the wonder fruit one of the healthiest foods on the planet.
Did you know pomegranates contain three times more antioxidants than green tea and red wine?
Antioxidants reduce the oxidative stress on your body by neutralizing free radicals produced by poor eating habits, excessive consumption of refined oil, processed and junk food, trans fats, a sedentary lifestyle, and sleep deprivation, among other factors. When left unaddressed or not neutralized, these can lead to chronic inflammation which is the root cause of most diseases today.
Apart from antioxidants, pomegranate is rich in polyphenolic compounds, vitamins – A, C, E, K, fiber, and folic acid. These make it excellent for your immunity, hair, and skin health.
Did you know pomegranate is a heart-friendly food?
Due to our poor lifestyle, many people today are dealing with constricted arteries where their walls become harder and make it difficult for their blood to flow freely. It is why so many people have high blood pressure issues, accumulation of plaque, or the inflammation of endothelial cells in the inner lining of the arteries. When left unaddressed, this can lead to strokes, clots, and blockages. Pomegranate has the ability to thin your blood and boost its free flow.
Pomegranate is rich in flavonoids and contains punicic acid that effectively lowers systolic blood pressure, cholesterol, and triglyceride levels. Many cardiologists recommend and encourage their patients to have pomegranates every day.
Like any fruit, there are contradictions when consuming pomegranate under certain conditions. For instance, if you are going in for surgery or are on certain medications, keep your healthcare expert in the loop about their consumption. It is best to avoid eating pomegranate two weeks before your surgery to prevent it from interfering with your BP levels.
Did you know pomegranates can help boost sexual performance?
Yes, ancient texts referred to the fruit as a symbol of fertility. When it comes to your sexual health, the ellagic acid and flavonoids in pomegranate boost sperm quality and testosterone levels, libido, and fertility by improving blood flow to your reproductive organs. Thanks to its property, pomegranates have also been monikered as natural viagra.
Did you know pomegranates boost bone health and athletic performance?
Yes, pomegranates are excellent for your bone health. They protect cartilage and joints by neutralizing certain enzymes that break down your cartilage. Whether you are dealing with constant knee or joint aches, osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis, are looking at prevention, or are a marathon runner undergoing intensive training, make pomegranates part of your meals.
The flavonoids and the tannins in pomegranates (when paired with lifestyle changes) can help switch on your anti-inflammatory mechanism. Once you bring down your inflammation levels, you will notice that your pain and flare ups will also reduce. Pomegranates can help boost athletic performance too.
Did you know it sharpens your memory and boosts brain health?
Pomegranates can boost your gut, memory, and brain health. It is excellent for those with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and other degenerative neurological conditions because it promotes the regeneration of the neurons in their brain.
Kids love pomegranates, too!
It is an adored fruit among kids, thanks to its sweet taste. It easily fits into a tiffin box and does not spoil quickly. It lasts for six to seven hours without refrigeration and is an immunity booster for your little ones. Are you looking for a personalized holistic program to meet your child’s nutritional needs? We help you find a way. Check out our Balanced Nutrition Program under You Care Wellness here.
Can I eat pomegranates if I have diabetes?
Yes, they can improve insulin sensitivity and are beneficial for diabetes. You can have four to five tablespoons of pomegranate a day. It is best to consume them on an empty stomach to improve their bioavailability and absorption. Avoid eating them post-sunset because it is a simple carb. You do not want spurts of energy or your blood glucose levels rising too fast if you have Type 2 diabetes. Make an informed decision. If your blood sugar fluctuates, pair the fruit with a portion of nuts on the side. The fiber, protein, and fats from nuts avoid sudden blood sugar levels spikes.
And for all those who think fruits cause Type 2 diabetes, they do not. Your poor lifestyle, among other factors, does.
Fruits have naturally-occurring sugars. Learn to differentiate between these and white refined sugar, processed fructose syrup, and artificial sugars.
If your glycemic load is very high, even fruit sugar will cause a spike in your sugar levels. So portion control and making an informed choice are key. Try to keep your glycemic load within limits.
Are pomegranates anti-cancer?
Pharmaceutical industries and medical researchers are now studying pomegranate for its promise in cancer and other health conditions. The ellagic acid in pomegranate keeps inflammation levels low and naturally controls your estrogen levels when paired with a change in your overall lifestyle.
It can be beneficial in cases where patients struggle with excess estrogen in the body like ER-positive breast cancers, endometriosis, PCOD, fluctuation of period cycles, or early/difficult menopause. Even men with excess estrogen, prostate cancer, and excess chest or belly fat can benefit from pomegranates.
It is beneficial to prevent cell growth, abnormal cell multiplication and inducing cell apoptosis. It is a mechanism where a cell has the ability to self-destruct when it starts behaving abnormally or tries to multiply. Without cell apoptosis, we become prone to mutations, tumors, and metastatic cancers.
Again we are not here to tell you that eating pomegranates will make your cancer disappear. Cancer is a multifactorial disease. There are many other foods and lifestyle changes that you have to pair with your conventional treatment to put your cancer in remission. But pomegranate can help you manage your condition. It is listed as an anti-carcinogenic agent and shows promise in managing prostate, lung, breast, colon, and skin cancers.
Need help managing cancer? Know more about our Cancer Care Program under You Care Wellness here.
Pomegranate juice VS the whole fruit
You can choose to drink pomegranate juice or eat the fruit in its whole form. We always encourage everyone to eat the fruit whole. If you have a digestive disorder or are suffering from a mouth or esophageal cancer where you cannot chew and swallow whole foods, you can have pomegranate juice. Chew your fruits and eat them whole because this helps keep their vitamins, protein, and fiber intact. The practice also increases mindfulness and improves your gut health.
Just because pomegranates have so many health benefits, it doesn’t mean you overdo them. Consuming it excessively will impact your health negatively. Moderation is key.
From a pimple to cancer, our You Care Wellness Program helps you find a way
Talk to our integrative team of experts today