Pomegranates truly are a tasty delight with many health benefits. We call them a Superfood. Research has shown that pomegranates can help with a number of health concerns such as high blood pressure, cancer, helps with memory and they are even an aphrodisiac.
“A pomegranate is filled with rubies when you open it up.”
~ Lynda Resnick
Health Benefits of Pomegranates
Is an Aphrodisiac
In recent years, pomegranate juice has been celebrated for its viagra effect. The juice was found to raise testosterone levels by an average of 24 percent and the bonus was that it had a positive effect on blood pressure in a study from Edinburgh. It is well known that higher testosterone leads to increased sexual interest.
Fights Breast Cancer
It was found that pomegranate extract hinders the growth of breast cancer cells according to the Cancer Research Center, University at Albany, Rensselaer, New York.
The peel of the fruit in form of an extract was found in a study to reduce breast cell production.
The seed oil has been shown to deter breast cancer.
Helps Keep Memory
The pomegranate polyphenols were found to reduce the loss of memory resulting from heart surgery in one study. Also, it was found that when seniors with memory problems drank eight ounces of pomegranate juice for four weeks, they had much better verbal and visual memory according to this study.
Lowers Blood Pressure
Helps Keep Heart Healthy
Patients who drank pomegranate juice found the plaque in their carotid artery reduced by 30 percent and their blood pressure lowered by over 12 percent according to research. Those in the control study who didn’t drink it actually had their atherosclerotic plaque increase by 9 percent.
Great for Exercise Performance
Blood flow was greatly improved for 19 athletes running on a treadmill when they consumed 1 gram of pomegranate extract 30 minutes before exercise in one study.
Helps Fight Viruses
They have anti-viral properties and have even been found to inhibit the HIV-1 virus in research at Kimball Research Institute in New York.
Pomegranates can be part of a healthy diet and considered safe. Some blood pressure medications can be affected by them, as they can lower blood pressure. Check with your doctor before consuming pomegranates if about to have surgery. Also, pomegranate juice may cause dangerous side effects when it interacts with certain prescription medications.
- They are thought to bring health and are a Hindu symbol of prosperity and fertility.
- In China, a popular wedding present is a picture of a ripe, open pomegranate with this sentiment: “May you have as many children as there are seeds.”
- King Henry VIII planted the first pomegranate tree in England.
- The classic non-alcoholic drink the ‘Shirley Temple’ uses grenadine syrup which comes from pomegranate juice.
One cup of Pomegranate seeds contain:
Vitamin C: 30% of the RDA.
Vitamin K: 36% of the RDA.
Folate: 16% of the RDA.
Potassium: 12% of the RDA.
Fiber: 7 grams.
Protein: 3 grams.
Pomegranate seeds are very sweet, 1 cup contains 24 grams of sugar and 144 calories. Learn more Nutritional Data
How to Select:
They are typically in season between September and January. Select one that is red to reddish-brown and make sure it has a deep color. Also, make sure it feels heavy and has a thick firm skin without soft spots.
How to Store:
A whole unopened pomegranate can be stored at room temperature for a week, or stored in the refrigerator wrapped in plastic for up to two months. You can store the fresh seeds in the refrigerator for up to three days. The seeds also freeze well. Freeze the seeds on a cookie sheet and then transfer them to an airtight container. They will keep in the freezer for up to six months.
“When I taste a juicy pomegranate, I taste paradise!”
~ Roylin J. Picou, Good News Poet
Time to eat pomegranates! You can simply eat them fresh right out of the fruit which I do or you can add them to a fruit salad as you see above or into a lettuce salad.
Here are three very yummy pomegranate recipes:
Pomegranate Juice – make your own healthy juice.
Creamy Pomegranate Smoothie – a creamy drink full of health benefits.
Exotic Meal of Quinoa with Pomegranate and Cashews – an exotic delicious combination with pomegranate and cashews.
Learn more about some of the healthiest vegetarian foods you will always want to have in your pantry or growing on your deck.
READ: Superfoods – Over 100 of the Healthiest Foods You Should Have in Your Diet and learn more about the variety of Superfoods we think you should have in your diet.