Today, there are numerous fruits and vegetables in the market. But some products, like pomegranates, are more popular compared to other produce. This is not only due to the food’s eye-catching color and characteristics. Basically, this ruby-colored fruit offers essential nutrients and other healing substances that can boost your health in various ways. So, what are the health benefits of pomegranates?
1. BOOSTS EXERCISE PERFORMANCE
To prevent dehydration, drinking enough fluids is essential before, during, and after your workout. But, there are some beverages like pomegranate juice that can enhance your performance, allowing you to exercise longer and with more intensity. This specific effect is due to the nitrates in the fruit, which is eventually converted into nitric oxide (NO) once ingested. As you know, NO can help dilate or widen your blood vessels. As a result, you will experience an increase in blood flow, leading to your muscles receiving more oxygen. But, there’s more. Consuming pomegranates may also help reduce muscle soreness and weakness, making this product an excellent post-workout food.
2. FIGHTS INFLAMMATION
Today, chronic inflammation is the root cause of various health problems such as arthritis, cancer, and diabetes. For this reason, including anti-inflammatory foods to your diet can help lower your risk of developing these illnesses. Fortunately, you can choose from a variety of drink, fruits, and vegetables. In fact, one of the most widely-known benefits of pomegranate is its strong anti-inflammatory properties. According to a recent study, researchers noticed that the inflammatory markers of diabetic patients have decreased after drinking pomegranate juice every day for 12 weeks. This effect is mainly due to the antioxidant contents of the fruit, which is higher compared to red wine and green tea.
3. IMPROVES MEMORY
In addition to various vitamins and minerals, pomegranates are also rich in other healthful substances like polyphenols. According to various studies, these antioxidants can improve memory and other brain functions. In fact, one study revealed that participants (middle-aged and older adults) had an improvement in their markers of visual and verbal memory after drinking eight ounces of pomegranate juice for a month. However, most studies about this specific effect are still in their early stages.
4. PREVENTS HEART DISEASES
Aside from those benefits of pomegranates, this ruby-colored fruit can also help prevent heart diseases in many ways. According to numerous studies, this nutrient-dense food may help improve blood flow, lower systolic blood pressure, reduce bad cholesterol levels, clear clogged arteries, and prevent atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries). All these effects are due to the various substances in pomegranate such as punicic acid and phenolic compounds like punicalagin.
However, you have to consult your doctor before taking any supplements or extracts made from this healthful fruit. This is a must if you’re taking any medications for heart diseases like statins.
5. PROMOTES YOUTHFUL SKIN
Pomegranate’s popularity is not only in the health department but the beauty industry, as well. In fact, a lot of skin care products like facial sheet masks have this healthful fruit as an ingredient. The main reason is due to the potent antioxidants present in this food.
As you know, a common cause of wrinkles and other signs of aging is the free radicals present in your environment. Thankfully, antioxidants can stop and reverse the negative effects of these unstable molecules. Plus, pomegranate has numerous substances that can protect, hydrate, and nourish your skin. The best part is that buying beauty and skin care products is not the only way to reap the beauty benefits of pomegranates. Consuming this fruit (juice or seeds) is also an effective method to get a healthy and youthful complexion.
Final Thoughts on Pomegranates
Because of the above-mentioned benefits of pomegranates, this healthful food is a great addition to your diet. However, when buying juices, you have to choose brands with low sugar contents. Furthermore, as mentioned, always consult your doctor before taking pomegranate juice, extracts, or supplements. Overall, eating pomegranates occasionally is a fantastic way to diversify your diet. In fact, the seeds of this ruby-colored fruit are one of the best ingredients to increase the nutrient value of your salads, cold dishes, and dessert recipes.
- Exercise and Pomegranate (NCBI)
- Anti-inflammatory Effects (NCBI)
- Pomegranate and Cardiovascular Health (NCBI)
- The Effects of Pomegranate on Memory (Hindawi)