10 Amazing Health Benefits of Pomegranates
 
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Benefits of Pomegranate
Here are some of the potential benefits of pomegranate.


1. Antioxidants

Pomegranates and juice.
Pomegranates have been eaten throughout history for their health benefits. Nowadays, the juice of this fruit is a popular part of healthy diets.
Pomegranate seeds get their vibrant red hue from polyphenols. These chemicals are powerful antioxidants.

Pomegranate juice contains higher levels of antioxidants than most other fruit juices. It also has three times more antioxidants than red wine and green tea. The antioxidants in pomegranate juice can help remove free radicals, protect cells from damage, and reduce inflammation.
 

2. Vitamin C

The juice of a single pomegranate has more than 40 percent of your daily requirement of vitamin C. Vitamin C can be broken down when pasteurized, so opt for homemade or fresh pomegranate juice to get the most of the nutrient.
 

3. Cancer prevention

Pomegranate juice recently made a splash when researchers found that it may help stop the growth of prostate cancer cells. Despite multiple studies on the effects of the juice on prostate cancer, results are still preliminary.

While there haven't been long-term studies with humans that prove that pomegranate juice prevents cancer or reduces the risk, adding it to your diet certainly can't hurt. There have been encouraging results in studies so far, and bigger studies are now being done.


4. Alzheimer's Disease Protection

The antioxidants in the juice and their high concentration are believed to stall the progress of Alzheimer disease and protect memory.
 

5. Digestion

Pomegranate juice can reduce inflammation in the gut and improve digestion. It may be beneficial for people with Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis, and other inflammatory bowel diseases.

While there are conflicting beliefs and research on whether pomegranate juice helps or worsens diarrhea, most doctors recommend avoiding it until you are feeling better and your symptoms have subsided.


6. Anti-inflammatory

Pomegranate juice is a powerful anti-inflammatory because of its high concentration of antioxidants. It can help reduce inflammation throughout the body and prevent oxidative stress and damage.


7. Arthritis

Flavonols in pomegranate juice may help block the inflammation that contributes to osteoarthritis and cartilage damage. The juice is currently being studied for its potential effects on osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis, and other types of arthritis and joint inflammation.
 

8. Heart disease

Pomegranate juice is in the running as the most heart-healthy juice. It appears to protect the heart and arteries.

Small studies have shown that the juice improves blood flow and keeps the arteries from becoming stiff and thick. It may also slow the growth of plaque and buildup of cholesterol in the arteries. But pomegranate may react negatively with blood pressure and cholesterol medications like statins.

Be sure to talk with your doctor before indulging in the juice or taking a pomegranate extract supplement.
 

9. Blood pressure

Drinking pomegranate juice daily may also help lower systolic blood pressure. But more studies need to be done to determine if pomegranate juice can decrease overall blood pressure in the long term.
 

10. Antiviral

Between the vitamin C and other immune-boosting nutrients like vitamin E, pomegranate juice can prevent illness and fight off infection. Pomegranates have also been shown to be antibacterial and antiviral in lab tests. They are being studied for their effects on common infections and viruses.

 

 
 
 
Nicole Cobb
Pomegranates Slow Prostate Cancer
 
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Post-Treatment PSA Increase Levels Off With Daily Pomegranate Juice

July 5, 2006 — A glass of pomegranate juice a day may keep prostate cancerprostate cancer recurrence away, UCLA researchers report.

Treatment cures two out of three men with early prostate cancercancer. But after treatment, a third of men have rising levels of prostate-specific antigen — PSA — in their blood. Of these men, 34% of them progressed to deadly, metastatic prostate cancer within 15 years. The faster PSA levels double, the sooner a man is likely to see his prostate cancer return.

Cancer-fighting chemicals are found in many foods. One food rich in these kinds of chemicals is pomegranate juice. Might pomegranate juice slow — or even reverse — this post-treatment increase in PSA? Yes, find UCLA researcher Allan Pantuck, MD, and colleagues.

Pantuck’s team enrolled 46 men in a study funded by the owners of POM Wonderful Co., the maker of the pomegranate juice used in the study. The men all had detectable PSA after cancer treatment; all drank 8 ounces of pomegranate juice every day.

The men’s overall PSA doubling time was nearly four times slower after they began drinking pomegranate juice. Sixteen of the 46 patients had a decrease in PSA levels — and in four, PSA levels dropped by half.

“I was surprised when I saw such an improvement in PSA numbers,” Pantuck said, in a news release. “This is not a cure, but we may be able to change the way prostate cancer grows.”

Pantuck says that pomegranate juice may allow 65- to 70-year-old men treated for prostate cancer to outlive their risk of dying from their cancer.

Prostate cancer patients with rising PSA levels usually opt for treatment with drugs that block testosterone. This “chemical castration” can have serious side effects, including bone loss, depressiondepression, and sexual dysfunction. It’s possible that drinking pomegranate juice can delay the need for such treatments.

Pantuck says that some men in the study have been drinking pomegranate juice — and keeping their PSA levels stable — for more than three years.

“The juice seems to be working,” he notes.

Because of these promising results, pomegranate juice will be studied in a major, placebo-controlled clinical trial at 10 U.S. medical centers.

The study findings appear in the July 1 issue of Clinical Cancer Research.

 

Source: WebMD.com

 
Nicole Cobb
Using Pomegranates to Fight Breast Cancer
 
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Phytochemicals in Pomegranates Stop Growth of Breast Cancer Tumors in Study

Jan. 5, 2010 — Eating pomegranates or drinking pomegranate juice may help prevent and slow the growth of some types of breast cancer.

A new study shows a group of phytochemicals called ellagitannins found in abundance in pomegranates inhibited the growth of estrogen-responsive breast cancer in laboratory tests.

“Phytochemicals suppress estrogen production that prevents the proliferation of breast cancer cells and the growth of estrogen-responsive tumors,” researcher Shiuan Chen, PhD, director of the Division of Tumor Cell Biology and co-leader of the Breast Cancer Research Program at City of Hope in Duarte, Calif., says in a news release.

Researchers say the ellagitannins in pomegranates work by inhibiting aromatase, which is a key enzyme used by the body to make estrogen and plays a key role in breast cancer growth.

“We were surprised by our findings,” Chen says. “We previously found other fruits, such as grapes, to be capable of the inhibition of aromatase. But phytochemicals in pomegranates and in grapes are different.”

Researchers say pomegranates have recently been hailed for their potential anti-cancer and heart healthy benefits thanks to their high antioxidant content. But they say this is the first study to look at their effects on aromatase and breast cancer growth.

In the study, published in Cancer Prevention Research, researchers examined the impact of 10 ellagitannin-derived compounds from pomegranates on aromatase activity and breast cancer cell growth in laboratory tests.

The results showed that of those 10 compounds, urolithin B most significantly inhibited breast cancer cell growth.

Experts say further studies will be needed to determine whether eating or drinking pomegranate-derived products will have the same effect in humans, but these results are promising.

“More research on the individual components and the combination of chemicals is needed to understand the potential risks and benefits of using pomegranate juice or isolated compounds for a health benefit or for cancer prevention,” Powel Brown, MD, PhD, chairman of the clinical cancer prevention department at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, says in a news release. Brown was not associated with the study.

Until then, researchers say people may consider eating more pomegranates to protect against cancer in the breast and perhaps other tissues and organs.

Source: WebMD.com

 
 
 
Nicole Cobb