Benefits Of Pomegranate: Health Wonders Of This Superfruit

Written by Dr. Amber Jones
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Are you unaware of the enormous benefits offered by pomegranate? According to research, pomegranates are super healthy and provide more health benefits than any other fruit. Moreover, the latest study conducted by researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) revealed that consuming a single dose of pomegranate juice lowered fasting glucose and elevated insulin in young healthy subjects.

Nutritional profile

Before delving deep into pomegranate’s further benefits, let’s take a quick look at the fruit’s nutritional profile

health benefits of pomegranate

An 80g portion of pomegranate contains

Kcal/KJ41 / 174
Protein1.0g
Fat0.2g
Fibre3.6g
Carbohydrate9.4g
Potassium192mg
Vitamin C10 mg

Top 12 health benefits of pomegranate

In the below sections, we take you through the long list of lesser-known benefits of this amazing fruit.

1. May cut down the risk of heart disease

Pomegranate contains high amounts of protective compounds which have antioxidant properties. Thus, the fruit comes with the dual benefits of protecting your cells from damage and also compounds such as cholesterol. To keep it simple, consuming pomegranate regularly may be effective in lowering the risk of atherosclerosis.

In addition to that, a 2005 study showed that consuming pomegranate juice may improve the flow of blood to the heart in patients having coronary heart disease. Having said that, it was a smaller study and research needs to be conducted among bigger samples.

2. Enhances bone health

Pomegranate would be the best choice among fruits when it comes to naturally boosting the health of your bones. As it is a rich source of flavonoids, pomegranate aids in preventing the loss of bone density. These flavonoids fight any inflammation in your body that may otherwise cause problems such as osteoarthritis and cartilage damage. Moreover, according to a study published in the Journal of Nutrition, pomegranate extracts can block enzymes that lead to joint damage in people having osteoarthritis.

3. Improves immunity

A rich source of anti-inflammatory compounds, pomegranates are quite healthy for people battling with immune-related disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. Apart from that the high amounts of vitamin C present in pomegranates boost antibody production and aid in the development of immunity. Thus, by consuming pomegranates, you will benefit from a healthy immune system that will help you fight common illnesses and infections.

4. May contain anti-inflammatory properties

When compared to beverages such as red wine and green tea, the antioxidant properties in pomegranates are three times higher. Thus, the fruit offers the advantage of anti-inflammatory properties. Going by the findings of the initial research, pomegranate may help fight inflammation in your gut.

There are other studies in which research was conducted on the potential anti-inflammatory effects of punicic acid, an antioxidant compound that is contained in pomegranate seed oil, on breast cancer cells. Though all these studies look promising, more research needs to be done to confirm the specific anti-inflammatory effects of pomegranate.

5. Reduces stress levels

Pomegranate not only lowers your body’s internal oxidative stress but also aids in reducing the psychological stress that you experience in your personal and professional life. A study conducted by Queen Margaret University shows that those who consumed pomegranate juice had lower cortisol levels, a stress hormone that surges during stressful situations.

6. Helps in digestion

Pomegranate is a rich source of fibre. As you know, fibre plays an important role in keeping your digestive system healthy. Thus, the best way to enhance your digestive system is to add pomegranate to your diet.

Top 12 health benefits of pomegranate

7. May boost athletic performance

According to a 2016 study, the antioxidants present in pomegranates and pomegranate juice may delay muscle soreness and enhance recovery after weight training sessions. There is one more study where it was found that pomegranate extract led to a boost in performance within 30 minutes of ingestion in sports where intermittent running was involved.

8. May enhance memory

As part of a study conducted among people who had a problem with their memory, the subjects were given 237ml of pomegranate juice daily. After a certain period, a significant improvement was observed in their verbal and visual memory. Another experiment conducted on mice showed that the intake of pomegranate can also prevent Alzheimer’s. However, the experiment is yet to be conducted among humans.

9. Prevents formation of plaque

As you know, mouthwash is used to improve your oral health. Though it may be a new piece of information for you, pomegranate is a far better option than mouthwashes that contain alcohol. It is the presence of certain compounds in pomegranate that makes the fruit provide strong antiplaque effects.

In a study, it was proved that the hydroalcoholic extract of pomegranate was effective in reducing the formation of dental plaque caused due to the accumulation of microorganisms by around 84 per cent.

10. Help boost fertility

As you know by now, pomegranate with its high levels of antioxidant content can reduce oxidative stress levels in the body. Oxidative stress has been linked to sperm dysfunction in men and also reduced fertility in women. In addition to that, pomegranates could also boost your sex life.

Studies have shown that the fruit elevates testosterone levels, the sex hormone in both men and women. Pomegranate also enhances the flow of blood to the genital region. Due to this benefit, the fruit is generally referred to as ‘natural Viagra’.

11. Effective against prostate cancer

According to two studies, pomegranate can fight prostate cancer. In one of the studies, it was revealed that pomegranate juice slowed the growth and also killed cultured cancer cells.

12. Boosts the level of oxygen

Last, but not least, pomegranate also helps increase the level of oxygen in your blood. With the antioxidants present in it, the fruit fights free radicals lowers cholesterol and prevents the clotting of blood. All these factors facilitate a free flow of blood that ultimately elevates the level of oxygen in your body.

Conclusion

Hope you found the article quite insightful. Starting today, consume more pomegranate so that you reap the enormous benefits of this fruit. Pomegranate offers numerous health benefits, including powerful antioxidants, heart health support, anti-inflammatory properties, potential cancer prevention, memory enhancement, diabetes management, joint health, skin nourishment, and a nutrient-rich profile.

References

  • Ercisli S, Gadze J, Agar G, Yildirim N, Hizarci Y. Genetic relationships among wild pomegranate (Punica granatum) genotypes from Coruh Valley in Turkey. Genet Mol Res. 2011;10:459–64. [PubMed]
  • Jurenka JS. Therapeutic applications of pomegranate (Punica granatum L.): A review. [Accessed September 2010];Altern Med Rev. 2008 13:128–44. USDA 2010. Pomegranates, Raw. United States Department of Agriculture. https://www.nal.usda.gov

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Amber Jones is a sought-after dietitian nutritionist with expertise in public and community health. She holds a Masters in Public Health from Yale University and completed her dietetic internship with the Yale-Griffin Prevention Research Center

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