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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Pomegranate

Pomegranate juice represents another of the foods recently touted for its health benefits. In some clinical studies, pomegranate juice has been shown to be of significant benefit, especially in the prevention of heart disease. To start, a glass of pomegranate juice contains about 40% of the US Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) of Vitamin C. It also has Vitamin A, E and folic acid in good quantities.

Further, pomegranate juice has excellent antioxidants properties. It has about three times more antioxidants ounce for ounce than does red wine or green tea. Many people also enjoy its rich taste, making it a welcome beverage.

Pomegranate juice has been shown to work well as a blood thinner. Some research has shown it may be an excellent agent for promoting blood flow to the heart. It also has been shown to reduce plaque in the arteries, and to raise “good” levels of cholesterol while helping lower “bad” cholesterol.

This preliminary research suggests that pomegranate juice may be helpful in preventing heart disease, heart attacks and stroke. Most physicians are quick to point out pomegranate juice should be just one aspect of a healthy diet and exercise program. Pomegranate juice alone would probably not cure or completely prevent heart disease.

Some research has also evaluated the antioxidant nature of pomegranate juice and its usefulness in fighting certain forms of cancer. Pomegranate juice has been tentatively shown to reduce incidence of breast and skin cancer. It has also been tested and shown to slow the growth of prostate cancer in mice.

Another interesting study has evaluated pomegranate juice and osteoarthritis. Pomegranate juice tends to act as an inhibitor on enzymes responsible for damaging cartilage. These studies applied extract of pomegranate directly onto damaged cartilage. More research would have to examine a cause and effect relationship between oral ingestion of pomegranate juice and reduction in cartilage deterioration.

However, early studies on pomegranate juice suggest it is surely healthy to drink. The fruit can be quite fun to eat as well. There are numerous pomegranate juice products available, many quite highly priced because of the health craze surrounding pomegranate juice. It is likely if continued studies show promising health benefits, more manufacturers of pomegranate juice will emerge and help ease prices through competition.

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