Pomegranates - as challenging as they might be to clean and eat (here are our pro tips) - are loaded with nutritional benefits and are one of the healthiest foods out there, rich in antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, and more.
While they’re in season in the summer, stocking up on our sweet and tart Pomegranate Molasses - made with just whole fruits - is a tasty way to reap their benefits throughout the year. Here are just some of the many health benefits of pomegranates that make them one of our favorite fruits.
- Pomegranates are rich in antioxidants and a diet high in antioxidants can help reduce the risk of many diseases. Pomegranates are high in polyphenols, a type of micronutrient with strong potential antioxidant effects. The antioxidant potential of pomegranate juice is actually higher than that of green tea or red wine (there are more tannins in pomegranate juice than red wine!). Research has shown that the juice can combat and lessen oxidative stress, which is an imbalance between the free radicals and the antioxidants in your body. Free radicals, by the way, are atoms created by normal cellular functions that roam about looking to bond with electrons in your body, which can damage cells, proteins, and DNA. Reducing oxidative stress can help mitigate against serious ailments, like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, arthritis, and cancer.
- Pomegranates can have anti-inflammatory effects. Pomegranate juice is rich in flavonoids, aka a plant’s natural micronutrients/chemicals it uses to protect itself from environmental toxins and more. These are shown to have anti-inflammatory effects in the body.
- Pomegranates are vitamin and mineral dense: In addition to a high vitamin C and vitamin E content, pomegranate juice is a strong source of folate, potassium, and vitamin K.
- Sports performance benefits: Move over, tart cherry and beet juice. Pomegranate juice may be the new sport performance enhancer. The juice may help reduce soreness and improve strength recovery. It also decreases oxidative damage caused by exercise.
- Protecting against heart disease. The aforementioned anti-inflammatory effects play a part in reducing blood pressure, which can help protect against heart disease.
- Anti-cancer benefits: Pomegranates have anti-angiogenic properties, which means they may help to prevent growing tumors from acquiring a blood supply, which is how tumors seize the nutrients they need to allow them to grow larger. Pomegranate is one of the very few foods, along with mushrooms actually, that contain “natural aromatase inhibitors”; these inhibit estrogen production, which can reduce breast cancer and prostate cancer risk.
- Good for memory: Trials in which pomegranate supplements were taken before and after surgeries that are typically associated with postoperative memory dysfunction were reduced; functional MRIs also show higher brain activation during memory tasks in those drinking pomegranate juice daily.
- Pomegranates taste amazing. Our molasses is like balsamic, but sweeter, more complex, and way more hip. Explore our pomegranate molasses recipes here.