Pomegranate is available as a dietary supplement in the form of a powder, juice, or capsule. Recently, researchers have taken an interest in pomegranate and studied it to determine what health benefits it offers. Based on the results of scientific studies, a pomegranate supplement can help improve health in numerous ways. Its benefits range from lowering blood sugar to providing relief from inflammation.
Pomegranate for Blood Pressure Control
The research convincingly shows that pomegranate can help lower blood pressure. A 2017 review, which was published in Pharmacological Research and written by a lead author associated with the Mashhad University of Medical Sciences and the University of Western Australia, analyzed the results of eight different studies concerned with the relationship between pomegranate and blood pressure. The results of the analysis indicated that the consumption of pomegranate juice significantly lowers both systolic and diastolic blood pressure, with stronger effects on systolic blood pressure. Pomegranate appears to be effective for blood pressure reduction and could be useful for preventing the development of high blood pressure or for maintaining blood pressure within a healthy range.
Pomegranate and Blood Sugar Control
Consuming pomegranate juice with a meal could help to stabilize blood sugar levels. Researchers from the University of Leeds in the United Kingdom conducted a study for inclusion in a 2017 publication of The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. They found that when participants consumed pomegranate juice along with bread, their blood sugar levels did not spike as drastically as they did when not consuming pomegranate juice. Pomegranate, therefore, could be useful for maintaining blood sugar control.
Benefits of Pomegranate for Athletes
Vigorous physical activity stresses the body, but pomegranate can prevent some of the damage. A 2016 study published in the journal Nutrition and led by a researcher from the University Miguel Hernandez in Spain found that when endurance athletes consumed pomegranate juice for 21 days, they demonstrated lower blood levels of markers of stress and damage. The benefits of pomegranate juice can also increase strength and prevent muscle soreness. In a study funded by POM Wonderful, L.L.C., researchers for a 2011 publication of The Journal of Strength & ConditioningResearch found that men who consumed pomegranate juice experienced increased strength and decreased muscle soreness after exercise. The research indicates that pomegranate supplementation can help athletes to achieve peak performance and recover quickly with less damage to their bodies.
Pomegranate’s Effect on Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis
Pomegranate has shown promise as a remedy for rheumatoid arthritis. A 2008 study in the journal Nutrition analyzed the impact of a pomegranate supplement on a group of mice that were at risk of developing arthritis. The study, which was conducted by researchers from Case Western Reserve University and University Hospitals of Cleveland, found that the pomegranate supplement resulted in reduced levels of inflammation. The mice who received the pomegranate supplement also were slower to develop arthritis, and when they did develop the condition, it was less severe. A second study concerned with the effect of pomegranate on rheumatoid arthritis was conducted by researchers affiliated with universities in Iran and published in a 2017 edition of the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition. The results of this study showed that pomegranate facilitated a reduction in several rheumatoid arthritis symptoms, including the presence of swollen, tender joints, stiffness in the morning, and pain severity. Based on these studies, pomegranate can be considered a useful treatment for rheumatoid arthritis.
Pomegranate for Dental Health
Pomegranate can also be effective for maintaining oral health. Brazilian researchers conducted a study for a 2006 publication of the Journal of Herbal Pharmacotherapy. They compared the ability of three different rinses to remove dental plaque: distilled water, a solution containing pomegranate extract, and the commonly used rinse, chlorhexidine. Study results showed that the pomegranate rinse was just as effective as the chlorhexidine and significantly more effective than the distilled water was in removing plaque. Pomegranate can, therefore, serve as a natural alternative to standard mouthwashes.
The research has proven that pomegranate can fight against plaque and benefit dental health, and studies have found it useful for other conditions, including high blood pressure and rheumatoid arthritis. Pomegranate supplementation is also effective for blood pressure control and the improvement of the pain and damage caused by exercise. With pomegranate demonstrating so many beneficial effects, it seems that most people can profit from this natural dietary supplement.
Protects Against Oxidative Stress
Pomegranates contain powerful antioxidants called punicalagins, which are present both in their peel and their juice. Pomegranate juice is shown to have three times the amount of antioxidant activity as green tea and red wine, which are well-known for their antioxidant power. Besides drinking pomegranate juice, taking pomegranate extract or powder also gives you a powerful dose of antioxidants, as these come from the peel of the pomegranate.
Antioxidants help slow down the aging process and delay the onset of age-related diseases. They work by neutralizing free radicals, which are waste products from chemical reactions in the body. When unchecked by a sufficient amount of antioxidants, free radicals damage cells and DNA, raising your risk for many chronic diseases, including cancer, diabetes, and heart disease.
Blocks the Replication of Cancer Cells
Breast cancer is one of the most widespread types of cancer. In lab studies, pomegranate extract has been shown to block the replication of breast cancer cells and kill a fraction of them. Research also has demonstrated pomegranate extract to reduce inflammation in breast cancer and colon cells, which further suggests it’s useful in the battle against cancer.