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7 Reasons to Love Pomegranates (and Juice)

posted by Michelle Schoffro Cook Sep 23, 2010 5:11 pm
7 Reasons to Love Pomegranates (and Juice)

Pomegranates. These delicious fruits offer more than just incredible taste, they are anti-aging and anti-cancer powerhouses. Here are 7 reasons to add pomegranates or pomegranate juice to your diet.

1.  They are anti-cancer powerhouses.  Studies show protection again breast and lung cancers and a slowing of prostate cancer progression.

2.  They protect your DNA.  Compounds in pomegranates also appear to interact with the body’s genetic material for protection.

3.  They reduce the effects of aging.  Pomegran­ates are packed with the antioxidant vitamin C—antioxidants help counter free radicals linked to aging and disease.

4.  Pomegranates also contain the healing phytonutrients polyphenols and ellagic acid.

5.  Pomegranate has been shown to be beneficial for osteoarthritis.

6.  Pomegranate may help protect against heart disease by preventing plaque build-up.  Pomegranate also lowers LDL cholesterol (the bad cholesterol) and raises HDL cholesterol (the good one).  In people with high blood pressure, research shows that drinking only 1.7 ounces of pomegranate juice per day lowered systolic blood pressure by 5%.

7.  It may prevent or slow the progression of Alzheimer’s disease. In one study, mice that were bred to develop Alzheimer’s disease accumulated significantly less amyloid plaque and performed better on mental tasks than control mice.

Here are some simple ways to enjoy pomegranates and pomegranate juice:

• You can eat them fresh or drink unsweetened bottled pomegranate juice.  For the latter, I recommend diluting 1 part water to 1 part pomegranate juice to avoid blood sugar spikes and crashes that can happen with any juice.

• Mix 1 part pomegranate juice with 1 part sparkling water for an incredible spritzer.

• I sometimes use a splash of pomegranate juice in my salad dressing for incredible anti-aging benefits and to jazz up a plate of greens.

• I also throw a handful of pomegranate berries on top of a salad for an extra kick.

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