Your Heart Loves Pomegranate


I've declared February heart-healthy month (for obvious reasons), and today I'd like to talk about the mighty pomegranate.

Pomegranates contain a compound called punicalagin (in fact, the only known existence of punicalagin is in this unusual fruit), which has been clinically proven to have powerful antioxidant qualities, and also be excellent for heart health. It lowers blood pressure and systolic (the harmful kind of) cholesterol, and increases the speed at which heart blockages (atherosclerosis) melt away.

You can purchase pomegranate juice in the store, but be wary of brands with a lot of added sugar and other fillers. My colleague Dr. Michael T. Murray recently shared three pomegranate juice recipes on Mind Body Green that are an excellent way to get more pomegranate into your diet on a daily basis.


How to Juice a Pomegranate

Juicing is an easy way to use pomegranates. The first step involves cutting off the crown of the pomegranate. This is the part with the stem at the top. Once the crown is removed, cut the pomegranate into four sections. Place the sections into a bowl of water and, using your fingers, gently roll the pips out from the membrane. Once the seed pips have been separated, drain out the water and you are ready to place them in the juicer.


Berry Happy

This juice is super healthy because it combines flavonoid-rich berries with pomegranate. 

  • 1 cup mixed berries (such as blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, blackberries)
  • 1/4 cup pomegranate pips
  • 1 apple or ripe pear, cut into wedges

Juice the berries, then the pomegranate pips. Flush through with the apple.


Red and Fruity

This juice is great for finicky kids, and takes advantage of the red pigments in berries, cherries, and pomegranate to cover up the beet taste.

  • 1/2 cup strawberries
  • 1/2 cup pitted cherries
  • 1 beet
  • 1/4 cup pomegranate pips
  • 1 apple, cut into wedges

Juice the strawberries and cherries, followed by the beet, pomegranate, and apple.


Pommy Blue Juice

This refreshing purple juice is as beautiful as it is healthy.

  • 1 cup pomegranate pips
  • 2 cups blueberries

Juice the fruits all at once and enjoy.