Ancient Greeks believed that the pomegranate constitutes a “condensed soul” that could lead to immortality. They also thought it to be a medicine for serious illnesses. In ancient Greece, as today, the pomegranate was considered the fruit which brought fertility. Homer, Theophrastus, Dioscorides and Pliny have referred to the therapeutic properties of the pomegranate, while Pliny mentions the pomegranates of Carthage as the best variety of his time. Even in faraway China, newlyweds ate pomegranate on the first day of their wedding in order to bless their marriage. Ancient Egyptians buried their dead with pomegranates. In the Middle East, the pomegranate was “famous” for its beneficial properties in cases of tonsillitis, hemorrhoids, conjunctivitis and even baldness. In ancient Indian medicine it was used as an antiparasitic agent, blood tonic and constituted a cure against ulcers, diarrhea and vaginitis.
Today we know that it is a fruit with high nutritional value, which also brings good health apart from good luck…!!! The pomegranate is a fruit with important therapeutic properties. Recent research studies have shown the therapeutic effect of the components and a wide range of strong antioxidant and anticancer properties (particularly against prostate cancer). It has also been used against cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, dental problems, erectile dysfunction and severe skin problems caused by harmful UV radiation. Other possible ways to use it include prevention of infantile cerebral ischemia, alzheimer, arthritis, obesity, and male infertility. Fresh pomegranate juice, if consumed daily, can reduce stress, prevent heart disease and inhibit the spread of cancer cells. Additionally, the regular consumption of pomegranate, and more particularly their juice, can significantly slow down the aging process of DNA cells, so that people’s skin can stay young and elastic for a little longer. What is more, pomegranate contains lots of vitamins (A, C, E), is rich in folic acid covering approximately 25% of the recommended daily dose, contains potassium, iron, calcium, magnesium, as well as many beneficial fiber.
Like all fruits and vegetables, pomegranate is rich in 3 different antioxidants, ellagic acid, anthocyanins and tannins, while its juice is particularly rich in these and its antioxidant activity surpasses even that of the green tea.
- The juice to reduce the risk of vascular atherosclerosis, thereby reducing the risk of blockage. It’s good for the heart, reducing the levels of bad (LDL) cholesterol in the blood. Simultaneously it helps to lower the levels of high blood pressure. The combination of the above, leads to long-term protection from ulcers, myocardial infarction and stroke. It also helps to protect the cells from free radicals. This has resulted to protect us from cancer, particularly prostate cancer and breast cancer, while various studies have shown promising results in the case of lung cancer. Pomegranate can reduce the creation of dental plaque and prevent the creation of diseases in the gums. It is considered anti-aging and frequent consumption during diet can improve the skin’s and hair’s appearance, making us look younger. It has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, leading to a therapeutic effect, while generally stimulates the body.
- Use the pomegranate seeds directly in salad and take advantage of their aphrodisiac properties!
- The leaves: peel them and make a decoction with significant antiseptic and astringent properties, which helps to improve bowel movement, facing lots of constipation problems. Ideal in cases of purulent tonsillitis, fights remuneration bowel, diarrhea, chronic dysentery and hemorrhoids.
- The distillate has anticancer properties. According to surveys it inhibits the development of skin cancer.
- 100 gr. of pomegranate give us about 70 calories.
How to clean it easily, while avoiding the mess
Pour the pomegranate in the bowl with cold water and leave it for about 10 minutes. Finally open the pomegranate as the orange peel in water, while releasing seeds. Strain the water and the seeds are clean and free of debris flesh.
Authors: Alexander Yatzidis, MD, Cleopatra Zoumpourlis, Mol. biologist, medlabnews.gr