Five pieces of fruit a day. This is the recommendation that a large number of experts make regarding the need for vegetable consumption in our diet in order to make it balanced and healthy. And if this recommendation is made it is because this type of vegetables contains a lot of essential and valuable elements for optimal maintenance for our health.
In addition, we have a wide variety of this type of food, each of them having different compositions that can be more or less beneficial in different aspects.
One of them, which usually is not one of the first we imagine when thinking about fruits, is pomegranate. And although it is not usually taken into account as orange or apple, the truth is that we have a very beneficial fruit for health. That is why throughout this article we will emphasize the properties and benefits of pomegranate in our health.
Pomegranate: a very healthy fruit
We call pomegranate an important and very healthy fruit from the Punica granatum tree, popularly known as pomegranate. This fruit that externally reminds of a yellowish-reddish-colored bulb, is consumed today in most of the world despite being considered exotic. The part that is consumed is its numerous seeds or arils, fleshy and reddish in color, which are usually extracted and used in different ways.
Although it is not the most consumed fruit, the truth is that it is a food that has been available and has enjoyed popularity since ancient times in much of the Mediterranean, being known by civilizations such as the Greek or the Egyptian and even being in Bronze Age sites, such as Jericho. In fact, references to it can be found in the sacred texts of the Hebrew and Muslim religions, the Torah and the Koran, as well as in Christianity.
Its region of origin is considered to be in an area that includes from ancient Persia and Babylon to India, from where it was gradually introduced to the rest of Asia and eventually to Europe (in Spain it was introduced by the Arabs during the Middle Ages) and to America.
Properties and benefits of pomegranate
Pomegranate is a very healthy and beneficial fruit, from which several very interesting properties have been discovered, thanks to its composition rich in vitamins, minerals, and fiber among many other elements. Specifically, the following properties of the pomegranate usually stand out.
1. A powerful antioxidant
Pomegranate seeds contain components such as punicalagin, a type of hydrolyzable tannin, and flavonoids such as cyanidin. Both groups of elements have high antioxidant power. This helps to keep cell damage caused by free radicals at bay, as well as a lower level of cell degeneration and a slowdown in tissue aging.
2. Has astringent effect
Pomegranate has, thanks to its high polyphenol content, the property of helping to retain and absorb liquid from digested food, making it difficult to expel soft and continuous stool. That is why it is sometimes advisable to treat cases of diarrhea. In this case, this property is more specific to the shell, with which infusions can be prepared.
3. Reduces blood pressure and helps prevent cardiovascular problems
Various studies seem to show that pomegranate has the interesting property of reducing blood pressure and the risk of cardiovascular problems. In addition, it has been observed that it contributes to reducing atherosclerosis, reducing the risk of thrombi and favoring a healthier blood circulation.
4. Aphrodisiac and sexual health effects
Another of the properties that have traditionally been attributed to pomegranate is the fact of being an aphrodisiac fruit. And some research seems to suggest that it generates an increase in the level of testosterone in both sexes, as well as estrogen in the case of women, something that could contribute not only at the sexual level but also in aspects such as strengthening bones and muscles.
Likewise and as we have mentioned before, the fact of helping to prevent atherosclerosis makes the vascular system remain healthy and the passage of blood to erogenous areas is not so difficult for that reason.
Pomegranate juice and specifically one of its components which we have already mentioned above, punicalagin, also has an interesting anti-inflammatory action that can be useful in helping to improve inflammation states of some body systems.
6. Possible antitumor action
Pomegranate has also been found effective in preventing different types of cancer, such as colon cancer, in addition to interfering in some studies in the proliferation of certain tumors.
7. Memory operation aid
The aforementioned antioxidant effects and the increase in testosterone in both sexes seem to be associated with better functioning of memory, being able to help prevent a possible deterioration derived from the effects of free radicals that damage neurons.
8. Diuretic and slimming
With a high potassium content, it has been observed that pomegranate is also a diuretic fruit, contributing to and facilitating urination and the expulsion of harmful elements from the blood through the urine. In addition to this, being rich seems to have a positive effect on the control of body fat, since in addition to being low in calories it helps reduce body fat and prevent obesity.
9. Promotes the immune system
Granada consumption can be an interesting option in the face of strengthening the immune system since it brings a lot of essential nutrients, minerals like calcium, potassium and iron and vitamins as important as C or A.
This means that we can more easily fight different infections and problems, as well as prevent and fight anemia.
It is also good for tissue regeneration.
10. Antiseptic, antifungal and antiparasitic action
Other interesting properties of this fruit is the fact that it has been observed that it helps fight different bacteria, fungi, and even intestinal parasites, something that makes pomegranate a useful fruit for infection prevention. This effect is not only achieved by consuming the arils but also observed in its use as a mouthwash.