- What you need to know
- Calorie content
- How to drink
- How to choose
- How to make at home
Alexander Lavrishchev, general practitioner, leading specialist of the Semeynaya network of clinics;
Alexey Ivashchenko, bar-chef of the Japanese bistro J’PAN.
Juicy raspberry seeds with a tart taste can often be found in oriental dishes; they are refreshing and seem to be loaded with vitamins. Pomegranate is almost never found in European cuisine. We’ll tell you what its benefits are, and most importantly, how to understand that this is real pomegranate juice.
What you need to know about pomegranate juice
Pomegranate requires a lot of sun and heat to bloom, so it is usually grown in warm regions
Pomegranate juice is a drink made by squeezing pomegranate fruits. This berry is also called “pomegranate” by botanists. It is a large fruit, covered with a fairly hard skin, under which there are many small and juicy grains. Pomegranate contains up to 50% liquid.
Pomegranate requires a lot of sun and heat to bloom, so it is usually grown in warm regions: Central Asia, Southern Europe, the Middle East and the Caucasus. In the cuisine of these regions, both the pomegranate itself and pomegranate juice are often used. It is consumed in its pure form, sauces, syrups, and desserts are prepared from it. Due to its tart, sweet and sour taste, it is suitable for both sweet and savory dishes.
Calories and nutritional value of pomegranate juice
Pomegranate juice, despite all its health benefits, contains sugar and calories.
The taste of pomegranate juice depends on how it is obtained and the presence of pieces of peel. They can give a bitter taste.
Pomegranate juice is rich in vitamins and microelements (1). 100 g contains:
- Calories – 68 kcal (3% of daily value)
- Carbohydrates – 17 g (7% DV)
- Sugar – 16 g (18% of daily value)
- Protein – 0.9 g (2% DV)
- Potassium – 259 mg (13% DV)
Benefits of pomegranate juice: 5 properties
Pomegranate juice helps with high blood pressure
1. Rich in antioxidants
The beneficial properties of antioxidants have long been studied – they protect cells from damage caused by free radicals. Pomegranate juice contains polyphenolic compounds that perform this function. It also contains vitamins C, K and E.
2. Strengthens the heart
Pomegranate is believed to have a positive effect on heart health, in particular helping with high blood pressure. However, while its effect on animals has been studied, there is no evidence base for humans yet (2).
3. Fights inflammation
Scientists suggest that pomegranate juice may be beneficial for inflammation. This is an important effect that could make life easier for people with rheumatoid arthritis, bowel disease and other chronic inflammatory conditions. However, there is not yet sufficient evidence to suggest that pomegranate juice actually reduces inflammation (3).
4. Destroys infections
Inflammation is the body’s immune response to an infectious infection. Some studies suggest that pomegranate juice may prevent infections or at least reduce their impact on the body. For example, dialysis patients were much less likely to visit doctors due to infections and inflammation if they took 100 ml of pomegranate juice during the procedure. The control group showed a decrease in the progression of the atherosclerotic process (4).
5. Helps with dental health
Limited evidence suggests that pomegranate juice helps fight plaque. One study used a tooth rinse with pomegranate juice. The results showed that the juice acted in the same way as an antiseptic solution—suppressing the growth of microbes that contribute to the development of periodontitis (inflammatory gum disease) (5). However, the control group was small, so the results of this experiment cannot be taken into account yet.
Harm of pomegranate juice
Pomegranate juice is harmful to people with acute diseases of the esophagus, stomach and duodenum
Pomegranate juice is safe when consumed in moderation. It should be used with caution by people with a tendency to food allergies.
How to drink pomegranate juice correctly
Cheap juices are likely to consist of a small amount of pomegranate juice, water and sugar
Whether to eat pomegranate as a fruit or drink its juice is a matter of taste. It is important to understand that juice contains less fiber, which slows down the absorption of free sugars. Therefore, juice has more calories than fresh fruit. This is usually important for those watching their sugar intake.
Doctors consider attempts to treat, improve health or build a diet around one food as an outdated concept. “These days, we view human health as a holographic, adaptive structure in which everything affects everything. Thus, no matter in what form you consume pomegranates, you must not forget about healthy sleep, normal body weight, physical activity and regular examinations with a doctor,” says Dr. Lavrishchev.
The expert makes the following recommendations:
- Give preference to freshly squeezed juice.
- If the juice is reconstituted, then it is better to drink the pomegranate juice itself, and not a mixture of fruits and berries.
- Pomegranate juice contains sugar and calories. You should drink it in moderation (150–300 ml per day is enough).
- Follow the storage conditions indicated on the packaging and check the expiration date. If you make your own pomegranate juice, drink it immediately or refrigerate it and drink it the rest of the day.
- Keep in mind that adding water only changes the taste of the juice, not its properties.
How to choose pomegranate juice
How to make fresh
Fresh juice can be stored in the refrigerator for no more than two days, then fermentation begins