This time of year, I go to the grocery store and always look at the pomegranates with a combination of longing and dread. Longing for the crisp, sweet yet tart, juicy yet crunchy pomegranate arils, and dread for the time and mess it takes to get those suckers into a bowl.
Then, I get to remembering all of the incredible health beneifts of eating pomegranates and drinking pomegranate juice, and know that it is worth the effort. Pomegrante gives huge returns to your health. It is unlike any other food in that it is widely researched because of its unique health benefits.
Pomegrantates are a spectacular source of antioxidants. Anti-oxidants prevent free radical damage that can lead to diseases such as cancer and heart disease.
In the cardiovascular system, oxidative damage causes a breakdown of the vessel walls which, in turn, attracts atherosclerotic plaques and blood clots to help to heal that tissue. You can see how this would lead to in increased risk of a cariovascular event such as a heart attack of stroke. Punicalagins, an antioxidant found only in pomegranate, have a profound effect on the heart and blood vessels. They help prevent oxidative damage, lower cholesterol, and can also lower blood pressure. Additionally, antioxidants in pomegranates have shown to decrease platelet aggregation, meaning they thin the blood, thereby decreasing the risk of heart attack and stroke.
These incredible fruits also have potent anti-cancer properties. Several studies have shown that the propeties in pomegrantes inhibit the growth of certain cancers, certainly by providing us with those potent anti-oxidants.
Human studies are currently underway to determine the effects of pomegrante for helping with depression and osteoporosis, as some of the compounds found in this fruit stimulate the production of both serotnin and estrogen receptors. this means that they have the potential of keeping those neurotransmitter and hormone levels within the range of normal functioning.
With this in mind, pomegranate is a great food to add to your grocery list. Despite the time and effort it takes to prepare this beautiful fruit, your body will thank you for it.