It seems that pomegranate juice has just been made even healthier

Ten years ago Pomegranate juice came to the UK.

The juice promised a healthy boost in problem areas weight loss, blood pressure, heart and kidney disease and Alzheimer’s, and has been the subject of numerous news reports.

It was all thought to be due to the antioxidants in pomegranates.

Now Pomegreat have taken a step further by harvesting the benefits of not only the juice but the whole fruit. This results in even more antioxidants, in particular an antioxidant called punicalagin.

So now Pomegreat have a new ingredient they call PurePlus which is the extract of the whole pomegranate. The benefits? I’ll quote from their site:

A new pomegranate juice that uses the whole fruit
A new pomegranate juice that uses the whole fruit

Regular consumption of PomeGreat® PurePlus™ has shown positive results relating to cardiovascular health, lowering cholesterol, and antioxidant benefits.

Pomegranates have been the subject of a great deal of promising scientific investigation in recent years, but we have yet to fully understand all the beneficial properties locked in the skin, pith and husk of the fruit. The initial results of our research are extremely promising. The extract is looking like a veritable fountain of youth.

It remains to be seen exactly how PurePlus will help, but it is already available from GoodnessDirect in 3 flavours: Pomegranate with Beetroot, with Blueberry or with Cherry.

Perhaps it’s your chance to become part of the experiment and see how Pomegranate PurePlus works for you? I’d be most intrigued to know.

The best of the world’s superfoods in your hand

Nature. It still offers us the best for our health.

But as much as we try to improve it, we can’t replace it.

That’s why we’ve woken up to the power of superfoods. Natural health elixirs which provide for our bodies in dynamic, indispensable ways.

There are so many to mention and we’re discovering more all the time: Saffron, Pomegranate, Goji, Buckthorn to name a few.

It seems like there are too many to keep up with. What about recent developments we might not have heard of? Like Reishi or Steviana?

Well a brand, under the name of Superfoods, is taking the best of nature’s high quality ingredients and providing them as supplements for your needs which hopefully means you can get your hands on what you want, when you want it.

They have a massive list and GoodnessDirect are beginning to stock them up, so keep your eye on Superfoods and watch the list grow.

Bathe in pomegranates for a night of love (well almost)

I have a love affair with pomegranates. Most of humanity has. They keep popping up in folklore stretching back to the beginning of time.

But then it’s not surprising… Pomegranate is reputed to be very helpful for people suffering from eczema, psoriasis and sunburn and, when it comes to hair, pomegranate oil will transform lifeless locks to give them a radiant healthy looking sheen.

Anti-oxidant rich body and hair treatment
Pomegranates: for anti-oxidant rich body and hair treatment

All of which explains why Faith In Nature, producers of natural and vegan beauty products, combine Pomegranate with the antioxidant properties of Rooibos for its latest set of bath foam, shampoo and conditioner.

They say, “The result is gentle, yet effective formulations that are environmentally responsible and free from parabens, SLES and other nasties too.”

Pomegranate is also known for encouraging love, so the range might be the perfect thing to use just before that all important date.

‘Drinking pomegranate juice can make you love your job!’

Take 60 workers and get them to drink 1/2 a litre of pomegranate juice every day for a fortnight. Then ask them if they enjoy work more?

The answer: Yes! Nearly everyone said life felt better. They were more active, enthusiastic and pleased with their work. The responses indicated they were less stressed too.

Drinking pomegranate juice can make you more active at work
Drinking pomegranate juice can make you more active at work

No wonder pomegranate used to be hailed as the forbidden fruit of lovers if this is what it does.

But loving your job?

Okay so, physically, the workers’ pulse rates had actually reduced…

But given that lower pulse rates are seen as a sign of health, this latest report will still add to the range of benefits which a drink of antioxidant pomegranate offers: help with weight loss, lower blood pressure, less risk of heart and kidney disease or Alzheimer’s too. And scientists are still looking into the benefits of pomegranate juice with cancer.

To choose from a range of pomegranate juices take a look at GoodnessDirect.

If you need oily fish for Omega 3 where do vegans stand?

With all this advice about Omega 3 and eating oily fish, where do vegetarians and vegans stand?

Well, given that the recommended dose of Omega 3 is 4g a day, you only need about a tablespoon of Flax Seed (Linseed) Oil per day to be doing well.

Bu the other thing you need to do is cut down on regular oils such as sunflower or corn oil as the high Omega 6 in these oils knocks out the work of Omega 3. Fats higher in monounsaturated fat, such as olive or rape seed oil are more suitable.

There are many ways to enjoy healthy oil
There are many ways to enjoy healthy oil

But isn’t a tablespoon still quite a lot? Well it goes really nicely with cereal, yoghurt or ice cream, and you can always drizzle it over salad or rice, pasta or potatoes. The important thing is that you don’t cook it as that destroys the beneficial fats.

Redwood, an award winning company which makes lots of vegan and vegetarian foods, has bottled Flax, Hemp and Seed Oil to provide you with the goodness you need. Flaxseed is one of the richest sources of Omega 3, while Hemp offers both Omega 3 and 6 at the perfect ratio. Hemp also provides Vitamin E and A and a range of minerals.

Redwood’s Seed Oil amazingly combines flax, sesame, pumpkin, borage, wheatgerm, pomegranate and seabuckthorn for all their nutritious properties – far too many to mention here in brief!

Other options for Omega 3 are green vegetables, tofu and walnuts, so with a bit of flaxseed in your diet, you really have nothing to worry about. The provision of Omega 3 isn’t quite so high in these, but they still make good sources of this brain enriching nutrient.

Lose the extra fat with pomegranate juice – new discovery

Drinking pomegranate juice for one month may reduce middle aged spread.

If you want to deflate that spare tyre and get rid of the extra flab a bottle of pomegranate juice every day could be the help you need.

An Edinburgh University research group found that volunteers who drank a daily dose of half a litre of pomegranate juice were less likely to develop fatty cells around their abdomen.

Pomegranate juice could help shift those pounds
Pomegranate juice could help shift those pounds

They also had much lower blood pressure, therefore reducing their risk of heart attacks, strokes and kidney disease. 500ml of pomegranate may also lead to a reduced likelihood of developing type II diabetes – associated with abdominal fat.

More tests still need to be done as none of the research volunteers were particularly overweight. But many people, worried about their weight, will be trying out the tangy fruit drink for themselves.

If that is what you are doing it makes sense to buy a 100% pure pomegranate juice which won’t have lots of added sugar in it. Both Organic Village’s pomegranate juice and Biona Organic’s pomegranate juice are not made from concentrate so there’s no added water or sugar or anything in them, just 100% pomegranate goodness.

If you find the drink a little tart make a litre with 500ml pomegranate and 500ml of water, but you don’t want to buy it diluted. A 100% pure pomegranate drink is the way to go – and it’s also one of your five a day.

Pomegranate juice and colon cancer

Colon cancer is the fourth most common form of cancer and is thought to be the most preventable. A study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry opens in a new window has investigated the chemo-preventive properties of pomegranate juice, high in polyphenols, on HT-29 colon cancer cells.

Previous studies have found that a diet high in fat, meat and fibre can increase an individual’s risk of developing colon cancer. Polyphenols may have the ability to prevent carcinogenesis through the joint effectiveness of antioxidant action plus the effective slowing or stopping  the spread of malignant cells into surrounding tissues. Polyphenols are found in fruit, vegetables, nuts and grains. Pomegranate juice is high in polyphenols  as well as flavonoids. The majority of polyphenols found in pomegranate juice are, it seems particularly efficient at accumulating in our organs including the colon, intestines and prostate gland.  The study by Kasimsetty indicates that the flavonoids in Pomegranate juice inhibits the activation of certain carcinogenic elements and so prevents the beginnings of cancer.

Kasimsetty and his team isolated the active elements of the Pomegranate juice and used them to see their effect on  five human cancerous cells lines, BT- 549 (ductal carcinoma, breast), HT-29 (colon carcinoma), KB (epidermal carcinoma, oral), SK-MEL (malignant melanoma) and SK-OV-3 (ovarian carcinoma). They tested the effect of the juice elements on the effectiveness in preventing cancer development.   The scientists then carried out various analyses including determining the ability of the polyphenols to inhibit cell growth.

Kasimsetty and the other scientists say they found that the polyphenols had a significant effect in inhibiting cancer development. They also discovered that the flavonoids  slowed down the growth of progressive cancers and were effective in inhibiting the proliferation of cancerous cells compared to non cancerous cells. That’s very clever.

The researchers concluded that regular consumption of pomegranate juice may provide a concentration of polyphenols sufficient to inhibit colon cancer development.

Further research details on Pomegranate Juice and it’s affect on colon cancer

The forbidden fruit, the pomegranate, could defend against breast cancer

The latest word on the street (well… from the lab really) is that breast cancer may well be prevented by eating pomegranates.

This luscious fruit of forbidden desire contains ellagitannins which have the same powerful effect as a drug used to treat breast cancer in post-menopausal women.

Pomegranates are already popular for their ability to decrease the risk of heart disease and prostate cancer. They are brimming with vitamins A, C, E and rich in iron, folic acid and fibre. It also has excellent antioxidant properties (around three times more antioxidants gram per gram than does red wine or green tea) and it tastes great.

Professor Gary Stoner advised that people “might consider consuming more pomegranates to protect against cancer development in the breast and perhaps in other tissues and organs.”

If you know you are at risk of heart disease or cancer it may well be worth making pomegranate your daily breakfast drink, and the concentrated juice drizzles deliciously over muesli or humous.

Watch this space for the results of trials into pomegranate’s effect on the flu virus later this year.

Can pomegranate juice help to fend off the flu?

pomegranate-130Pomegranate juice has been hailed to help heart disease and strokes as it has excellent antioxidant properties (around three times more antioxidants gram per gram than does red wine or green tea) and it tastes great. But now Pomegranate juice is being tested in new clinical trials to see it’s effect on flu. In the shadow of fear of an impending swine flu epidemic no trials could be more pertinent.

In the trials patients are being given two glasses of juice every day for four or five days. The scientists are hopeful for a positive result as in previous laboratory tests revealed that compounds in the pomegranates effectively stopped the flu virus from replicating and spreading.

The tests are taking place at the Hillel Yaffe Medical Centre in Israel. The conclusions should tell us if the benefits so far discovered will be effective in humans and usable against the flu virus.

As well as heart disease, pomegranate juice is thought to help combat oxidative stress which happens as a result of chemical reactions in our bodies, oxidation. As already mentioned Pomegranate is a powerful antioxidant and can be a key factor in combating oxidation and it’s resultant damage to our system.

Pomegranate juice is available as a juice to drink or as a concentrate to take as a food supplement.

Over the years there has been much fuss about pomegranate juice, and with good reason as, for starters pomegranate juice is packed with vitamin C, vitamin A, E and folic acid.  I have already mentioned about its considered benefits to those with heart weaknesses and the juice has been to also work well as a blood thinner and research has been carried out to see if it aids flow of blood to the heart.  Some results show that it actually reduces the plaque in the arteries and raises our ‘good’ cholesterol while reducing the levels of ‘bad’ cholesterol. All things in moderation though hey? Pomegranate is definitely worth including in anyone’s health regime but of course it is only part of the picture of healthy diet and exercise.

Pomegranate juice, a healthy and delicious drink and a fun fruit  – how do you eat yours?

All About Pomegranates

There’s more to a pomegranate than meets the eye! Pom Wonderful enlightens us on some of the more trivial aspects of this tasty fruit… or maybe they are not so trivial?

  • Pomegranates are one of the earliest cultivated and most revered fruits
  • Considered one of the oldest known edible fruits, pomegranates were brought to the New World by Spanish Missionaries in 1521
  • The pomegranate is native to Iran and to the Himalayas in northern India and has been cultivated and naturalised to the Mediterranean region, as well as parts of China
  • The pomegranate grows as a shrub and can grow to be 12-16 feet tall when trained as a tree. Pomegranate trees live for many years and there are specimens in Europe that are over 200 years old
  • Early Wonderful, Grenada, Footlhill and Wonderful are names of pomegranate varieties that grow in California

    Pomegranate Terminology

  • Outer peel or skin
  • Albedo – white fleshy substance directly under the skin
  • Membrane – see-through yellow membrane surrounding arils
  • Aril – edible juice sack and seed

    In England

  • The British Medical Association and three royal colleges, the Royal College of Midwives, the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists and the Royal College of Physicians, all feature the pomegranate in their coat of arms
  • The heraldic meanings of the pomegranate reflect the meanings of the pomegranate in the myth of Persephone – the persistence of life, fertility and regeneration

    The Greeks

  • In Greek mythology the pomegranate represents life, regeneration and marriage
  • Pomegranates were said to be a favourite food of the gods

    The Myth of Persephone

  • Hades, Lord of the Underworld, abducted Persephone, daughter of Zeus and Demeter and made her Queen of the Underworld. Once there, Hades tempted her with a juicy pomegranate. By eating the arils, Persephone was thus joined Hades – the pomegranate being a symbol of the indissolubility of marriage
  • Inconsolable at the loss of her daughter, Demeter prevented the earth from bearing fruit unless she was her daughter again. Zeus arranged a compromise: Persephone would live with Hades for one third of the year and the other two thirds with Demeter. Persephone’s return from the underworld each year is marked by the arrival of Spring

    Judaism

  • Pomegranate arils are said to number 613 – one for each of the Torah’s 613 commandments (according to Judaic law)
  • Depictions of the fruit had long been featured in architecture and design. They decorated the pillars of King Solomon’s temple and the robes of Jewish kings and priests
  • In the Song of Solomon 4:3 it reads, “Your lips are like a scarlet thread and your mouth is lovely. Your cheeks are like halves of a pomegranate behind your veil.”
  • The silver shekel coin of Jerusalem, in circulation from 143 to 135BC, bears engravings of three pomegranates

    Christianity

  • Recent scholarly works show that it was the pomegranate, not the apple, which Eve offered Adam in the Garden of Eden
  • A symbol of resurrection and life everlasting, the pomegranate is often found in statues and paintings of the Virgin and Child
  • In medieval representations, the Pomegranate tree, a fertility symbol, is associated with the end of the unicorn hunt

    Buddhism

  • Pomegranates are one of three blessed fruits, along with citrus and peaches
  • The demoness Hariti was, according to Buddhist legend, cured of her evil habit of devouring children in Buddha, who gave her a pomegranate to eat
  • In China, the pomegranate is widely represented in art symbolizing fertility, abundance, prosperity, numerous and virtuous offspring and a blessed future. A picture of a ripe pomegranate is a popular wedding present

    Islam

  • The Koran describes a heavenly paradise with four gardens that contain, among other things, the pomegranate
  • Legend has it that each pomegranate contains one aril descended directly from paradise
  • Mohammed considered the pomegranate to be a precious fruit filled with nutrition, bringing both emotional and physical peace
  • Bedouin weddings prominently feature pomegranates: a ripe fruit is split open by the groom as he and his bride enter their home. Abundant arils ensure that the couple who eat them will have many children