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Pomegranate Juice Health Benefits

Pomegranates have been around since before Biblical times, and the health benefits of the fruit were known to men of medicine since then. Recent scientific research has confirmed the validity of the belief in pomegranate juice health benefits. Pomegranate is a bright red hexagonal-rounded fruit with hundreds of ruby red seeds in juice-filled sacs called anils below the thick rind. The color of the anils ranges from white to light pink to deep purple, depending on the variety and the ripeness of the fruit. Pomegranate juice is made by pressing the halved fruit by hand in a citrus fruit press. The extracted juice may be strained to discard the seeds and pieces of the internal white membrane.
This membrane surrounds the anils or juice filled sacs around the seeds. The anils are eaten for their tartish sweet taste or put into a blender to get the juice. Half a cup of anils provides less than sixty calories, making it an ideal garnish with a crunchy sweet taste to add in salads, soups, yoghurt dips, etc. More information on pomegranate health benefits

Pomegranate juice nutrition facts show that the juice has high levels of vitamins A, C, K, and minerals like potassium, calcium, and manganese. Calories in pomegranate juice come mostly from the sugars in the fruit, so it may not be advisable to add sugar to sweeten the juice if you are calorie conscious. Eating the fruit may be more filling and satisfying to a dieter than drinking a reconstituted juice using pomegranate juice concentrate. Pomegranate juice may be the ultimate weapon against belly fat as regular consumption of the juice is found to reduce non-esterified fatty acid (NEFA) in the blood. High levels of NEFA in blood are directly linked to large deposits of fat around the stomach and abdomen. Organic pomegranate juice is safe for pregnant women as the juice is known to protect neonatal brain.

Pomegranate juice recipes include pomegranate molasses for use as a glaze or a marinade before baking meat or poultry. Pomegranate and its juice are popular ingredients in Israeli and Middle Eastern cuisines. Concentrated pomegranate juice is used in cocktails in the Caribbean. It is also used to make a pomegranate syrup or jelly. Used in cheesecakes, jello, ice creams, pies, smoothies and sundaes, pomegranate anils and juice can add color, taste and flavor to any dessert. One can indulge in the sweet juice guilt free as drinking pomegranate juice is considered a natural solution to prevent the buildup of dental plaque. 

Pomegranate juice has been in the news recently as studies have shown that it can help slow down the progress of prostate cancer. Compounds in the juice have also been found to restrict the movement of malignant cancer cells, thus preventing the spread of cancer from one part of the body to another. Regular consumption of pomegranate juice is also said to help in preventing breast cancer and inhibit the spread of lung cancer. With the increasing incidence of cardiovascular diseases caused by sedentary lifestyles and unhealthy dietary habits, the health benefits of pomegranate juice become all the more relevant in today’s world. Antioxidants called punicalagins, which are present in pomegranate juice, help to reduce the build of plaque on artery walls and the hardening of arteries. Consuming pure pomegranate juice regularly helps cut down the LDL cholesterol levels in the blood and stabilizes blood pressure. However, pomegranate juice side effects include lowering blood pressure when it interacts with drugs for high blood pressure. Combining pomegranate juice with medications that are changed by the liver seems to slow the breaking down of these medicines in the liver.

Submitted on May 31, 2011