Pomegranate is a fruit with a pleasant smell, exotic appearance, strong pigmentation and abundant health benefits.
According to experts, it has an anti-inflammatory effect that is effective against sore throats, gingivitis and canker sores. In addition, it reduces the risk of heart disease, helps fight infections and can even help fight obesity.
Main benefits of pomegranate
Pomegranates are rich in vitamin C , potassium and fiber. Most of this fiber is found in white seeds, hidden under juice pockets. Contains 48% of the recommended daily intake of vitamin C, important for a variety of health functions.
According to nutritionist, Vitor Boico, “the fruit is rich in bioactive compounds, that is, compounds that have great therapeutic potential. The most present in the seed are polyphenols, from the anthocyanin classes, mainly cyanidin and delphinidin. These compounds are effective in preventing obesity and controlling blood glucose,” he pointed out.
However, these are not the only benefits of pomegranate. Check out some of the main advantages for the body that its consumption offers, according to science:
1. High anti-inflammatory power
This is one of the main reasons for this fruit’s fame. It is because it is anti-inflammatory that it is commonly indicated for the combat and relief of sore throats . Studies also show that the intake of pomegranate juice is able to reduce, by approximately 30%, inflammation in the body of individuals with type 2 diabetes. ( 1 )
It is an excellent anti-inflammatory due to its high concentration of antioxidants. It is known that the fruit has more than 100 phytochemicals, antioxidant substances that protect the body against various diseases. Among them, beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin that stand out the most for acting directly in strengthening immunity are beta-carotene and zeaxanthin, attenuating the action of free radicals, cleaning the body and reducing inflammation.
2. Helps lower blood pressure
In a study published in Research Phytotherapy, people with hypertension had a significant reduction in blood pressure after consuming 150 ml of pomegranate juice daily for two weeks. ( 2 )
They are believed to lower blood pressure by moderating levels of the angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE), a protein that plays an important role in controlling blood pressure by controlling the size of blood vessels in the body.
ACE inhibitors are common in the production of drugs to control hypertension but, fortunately, they can also be obtained naturally.
3. Reduces the risk of heart disease
Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the world and is driven by several factors such as diabetes, hypertension, high cholesterol and triglycerides. A study of 51 people showed that ingesting 800 mg of pomegranate oil for 4 weeks significantly lowered blood triglyceride and HDL levels. ( 3 ) The consequence is a healthier and more protected heart.
This is because pomegranate is rich in a substance called punicalagin, a potent class of polyphenols that helps improve blood circulation , regulate blood pressure, lower bad cholesterol and triglycerides, and reduce the chances of a person suffering from atherosclerosis and stroke.
4. Fights infections
This is one of the few fruits proven to be able to fight fungal and bacterial infections. The thrush , for example, is a common problem that affects thousands of women due to excessive reproduction of Candida albicans, a type of yeast, which which the pomegranate was effective in combat.
Its antifungal activity has been associated with the presence of punicalagin, one of the main components of the plant. In addition, the pomegranate peel extract causes serious damage to the cellular structure of C. albicans yeasts, interfering with the growth and/or development of fungi and, consequently, preventing their proliferation. The benefits have a satisfactory effect also in oral candidiasis.
In the form of juice, the fruit also helps to eliminate harmful agents that cause gingivitis and periodontitis from the mouth .
5. Strengthens the immune system
Pomegranate has a high concentration of vitamin C, which is known to be an excellent protector and strengthener of the immune system, helping to keep away problems such as colds and flu , as it increases the production of antibodies. The fruit is also rich in zinc and magnesium, helping to fight urinary infections.
6. Helps prevent breast and prostate cancer
The extract of this fruit can not only prevent the growth of cancer cells, but also eliminate some of them. Therefore, it has been studied as a potent antigen to breast and prostate cancer.
It is believed that this is another consequence of its high concentration of antioxidants and flavonoids, which protect cells and play a curative role, preventing the multiplication of cancer cells.
|100 gram serving||Amount per serving|
|Energetic value||51 Kcal|
|C vitamin||8,1 mg|
* Daily reference values based on a 2000kcal or 8400kj diet. Your daily values can be higher or lower depending on your energy needs. Data taken from TACO, revised and expanded edition. ( 4 )
Yes , it’s true. Pomegranates are low in calories, so they can be consumed guilt-free, but always in balance.
In this way, in addition to fighting and preventing diseases, drinking a glass of pomegranate juice helps reduce cortisol levels, which can lead to weight gain. In addition, it favors increased circulation and is a diuretic , which helps to eliminate cellulite and fluid retention.
How to consume?
There are many delicious ways to make this consumption. One of them is opening the fruit in two or four parts to facilitate the removal of the red seeds, the edible part of the fruit. Another way is through the preparation of juices . However, one of the best ways to use it and obtain its benefits is through tea made with the bark.
According to Vitor Boico, “most of the time the pomegranate peel is discarded, however it is the part of the fruit that has the greatest therapeutic potential. A recent study by USP indicated that the bark has 10 times more antioxidant potential than the pulp and also acts in the prevention of Alzheimer’s, favoring the survival of neurons and preserving memory ”, stressed the nutritionist.
How to prepare pomegranate tea
Pomegranate peel tea is highly effective in combating sore throats, as well as helping to treat canker sores and prevent cavities, due to its antiseptic and natural antibiotic effect.
- 6 g of pomegranate peel
- 100 ml of water.
As recommended by ANVISA, place the ingredients in a pan and boil for 2 minutes. Turn off the heat and let it sit for 10 minutes. This liquid should not be ingested, only used for mouthwashes and gargles.
It is important to remember that any and all treatments, whether with natural or synthetic remedies, must be prescribed and supervised by a physician. Self-medication is dangerous.
Care and contraindications
Pomegranate can negatively interfere with the action of some medications, such as anticoagulants, anticonvulsants and statins. Due to its power to lower blood pressure, the fruit should also be avoided by people with a tendency to hypotension , or individuals who take medication for this purpose.
According to nutritionist Vitor Boico, “the use of pomegranates is not recommended for pregnant women, lactating women and children under two years of age.”
Fun facts about the pomegranate
The history of the pomegranate is older than most people realize. Originating in Persia, now called Iran, the fruit gained strength in Central Asia and many Mediterranean countries.
In the desert, it was appreciated for its ability to remain succulent even in situations of heat and aridity, which yielded a tasty juice capable of quenching thirst during long journeys. According to the Holy Bible, she was one of the seven spices with which the land of Israel was blessed.
The pomegranate arrived in Brazil by the hands of the Portuguese, where it gained fame and suitable conditions for cultivation.