Known as a ‘wonder fruit’ by many experts, the pomegranate is a vibrant red fruit that offers many health benefits.
‘Pomegranate’, the word itself, comes from the French word of the same spelling which translates to ‘seeded apple’.
Originally, it is believed that the fruit was taken to Egypt in 1600 BC having been found in Iran. Soon enough, it was being used in medicine as well as food and many Egyptian tombs and paintings show the importance of the pomegranate over time.
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Thanks to years of knowledge and superb technology, we now know exactly what can be found in the fruit and why it is so beneficial to our health. To start, it offers health benefits and benefits for the skin, especially when consumed as a juice for a number of reasons, including the high antioxidant content (source ars.usda.gov).
With most fruit, the juice form has some serious downsides, but the same cannot be said for the pomegranate. In essence, this is because it is the peel that contains the antioxidants. When the fruit is squeezed, these are then released into every single glass. Alongside green tea and blueberries, pomegranates are the top dog when it comes to nutrition. There is plenty of research and many scientific papers confirm the potent health effects of pomegranate.
Over the years, we have found it a lot easier to deal with pomegranates in juice because otherwise the seeds can cause a problem. (If you decide to eat them whole, rather than juice them, don’t spit the seeds though! Despite the common belief to the contrary, they are healthy and good for you.) Therefore, having it as a drink makes it easier and allows the nutrients to be consumed quickly into the bloodstream.
Health Benefits of Pomegranate Juice
When compared with other fruits, pomegranates contain no less than THREE TIMES more antioxidants than oranges and green tea which is one of the highest
levels you will find.
In one glass of pomegranate juice, you can receive nearly half of your daily folic acid needs; in addition to this, the juice also contains a healthy dose of vitamins A, C, and E. If the juice is completely natural, you will be getting the most amount of vitamins possible as processed drinks often lose some of their effectiveness.
You should also ensure that the juice isn’t sweetened as sugar will often reduce the fruit’s performance.
When it comes to our heart, we need to look after it the best we can and it just so happens that pomegranate juice can help here too because the arteries remain flexible and the risk of inflammation is reduced within the blood vessels.
Furthermore, it minimizes the risk of one of the main causes of heart disease – atherosclerosis. If you needed any more proof, you will see a smaller risk of artery blockages which can lead to blood flow restriction to the brain and heart. If you are interested in reading more about the effects of pomegranate on reversing atherosclerosis check this interesting post.
As you can see, pomegranates might just be the king of all fruits and they are even known to reduce blood pressure, lesions and blood vessel inflammation.
It can be used as a natural aspirin. What’s more, it improves blood flow by thinning the blood itself!
Side Effects of Pomegranate Juice
For most people, pomegranate juice is SAFE when ingested, but there is a small percentage of population that can experience some allergic reactions. Pomegranate juice is also considered possibly safe for pregnant women. It is also likely safe when applied to the skin, however, in rare cases, some people can have swelling, itching, and problems with breathing.
There is another issue that comes to mind when considering this form of juice. It is common for almost all fruit juices out there. It is the problem of fructose in the fruit juices.
When researching the fruit, you will see many people talking about its level of fructose but this will likely not have the same effect on blood sugar levels as some other fruits. In a recent study, patients with diabetes were given pomegranate juice on a daily basis for two weeks and there was no real change in blood sugar levels.
Still, if you have high blood sugar, if you are obese, or if you have a metabolic syndrome, it would be wise to check with your doctor about the safe dose of pomegranate juice to limit the daily intake of fructose. Still, the glycemic load of bottled pomegranate juice seems to be pretty moderate, which is a good new for those who would like to include small quantities of this juice in their diet.
You can find more information about the side effects of this juice here.
Home Made Juice
The best pomegranate juice is certainly the one you can prepare at home. Fresh pomegranate simply cannot compare with other pomegranate-based products you
can buy in a store.
Juicing pomegranate seeds is not that complicated, but it still requires some work and patience. It is by far the best method for obtaining freshly squeezed juice, and also the most healthful one. A nice instruction how to make home made pomegranate juice can be found here:
Please keep in mind that the yield of pomegranate juice will not be too large. One pomegranate, depending on its size, will give you about 2 to 4 ounces of freshly squeezed pomegranate juice.
If you want to reap the benefits for the greatest health impact, drink the juice pure, without added sugar, and immediately after it has been extracted. If you want to store it for later use, freshly made pomegranate juice can be stored in a refrigerator for 2 to 3 days, or up to 6 months when frozen.
Pomegranate Juice You Can Buy in a Store
Now if you don’t want to prepare your own home made juice, you are left with the commercial brands. In choosing the best pomegranate juice, there are several important points to consider.
You might want to avoid sugar added to the juice. Sugar is often added to improve the taste, however, in that case the health impact is greatly diminished. I personally would never choose a juice brand with some extra sugar in there.
Another type to avoid is pomegranate juice as concentrate, especially when it is full of additives, sugar, or sweeteners.
Always check the label to make sure you are buying what you intended to. Select organic brands over all the others. But even if the juice is one hundred percent organic, natural, and without additives, if it is on the supermarket shelves there is no doubt it has been pasteurized.
Pasteurization kills harmful bacteria, but also many of the nutrients and healthy compounds cannot survive it. Because of that, once again, prepare your own fresh juice whenever you can.
Best Pomegranate Juice Money Can Buy
If you have to buy some pomegranate juice for whatever reason, the best brand we were able to find is:
Lakewood PURE Pomegranate Juice
Just like their Cranberry juice, this particular brand contains no artificial flavors, no preservatives, and no added sugar. Moreover, it is not made out of concentrate.
The Lakewood Pomegranate juice is 100 percent gluten free, casein free, kosher free, GMO free, and vegan.
On the Lakewood website, the manufacturer says that “every bottle of this juice contains the juice pressed from ten to twelve fresh pomegranates”. Every bottle of this brand contains four cups of fruit juice.
What we also like about this brand is the fact that it comes in GLASS containers, that is, by definition
it is free from DEHE, BPA, and BPS toxicants.
They also have an organic variation of their juice.
In an 8 oz serving of Lakewood organic pomegranate juice there are 150 calories, if you consume it unsweetened.
It goes without saying that this is not a cheap juice. You will get 6 bottles of 32 ounces with a total of 192 ounces of pure pomegranate taste.
You can choose between the less expensive non-organic and a more expensive organic variation.
You can purchase this product online on Amazon.com, from their website here:
If you want to check additional references, you might go to the Amazon customer reviews page.
The second link is for their organic pomegranate juice