The Healing Benefits of Pomegranate


By: Gaia Staff  |  August 24, 2013

Often referred to is as “ the divine fruit,” the Pomegranate is classified as a berry, and is the size of a grapefruit with a semi-hexagonal shape, and thick and hard ruby-reddish skin. Each seed has a surrounding water-laden pulp, ranging in color from pink to deep red or purple. The seeds are embedded in several white, spongy membranes, which are compactly encased.

Believed to have been harvested in the Garden of Eden, the Pomegranate is part of many ancient folk traditions – all of which consider it a form of medicine. In ayurveda, it is a symbol of both fertility and prosperity. It is considered a fruit-medicine. The pomegranate’s flowers, leaves, bark, peel and of course seeds are all edible.

Botanical Name:

Punica granatum

Native to

Iran and India

Healing benefits

  • Full of antioxidants, vitamin C and potassium

  • Controls body weight

  • Reduces cholesterol

  • Fights against cell damage

  • Inhibits viral infections

  • Pomegranate extracts have anti-bacterial effects which combat dental plaque

Aids with conditions such as

  • Heart disease

  • Cancer, especially prostrate and breast

  • Symptoms of diarrhea

For thousands of years, the pomegranate has been extensively used as a source of food-medicine in ayurveda. The rind and bark are used as a traditional remedy against diarrhea, dysentery and intestinal parasites.

Pomegranate juice also helps to reduce body heat and is useful for people suffering from low blood pressure. In addition, its seeds and juice are considered a tonic for the heart and throat, and help to burn toxins.

The flower juice, rind and tree bark also aid with the following: stopping nose and gum bleeds, toning skin, firming-up sagging breasts (after being blended with mustard oil), and treating hemorrhoids.

It is also fantastic for oral health (immediately controlling bad breath), slowing down the aging process, and (when used as eye drops) for slowing the development of cataracts.

Cautions

Eating pomegranates might interfere with certain medications in the same way that grapefruit juice does. Be sure to ask your doctor or pharmacist about drug interactions.

The pomegranate’s wine-red juice will stain your fingers, clothes and countertops. My best trick for getting the seeds out is submerging the fruit under water. This with soften the berry, making the seed removal much easier and cleaner.

Recipe: Vegetarian Fesenjān (A traditional Persian dish)

This recipe is best served over brown rice, quinoa, or roasted or raw vegetables.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of walnuts (ayurvedic option: soaked over night)

  • 2 large onions, finely chopped

  • 1/4 tsp ground saffron, dissolved in 1 tabs hot water

  • 1 tsp ground coriander

  • 3/4 cup of pomegranate molasses (make your own by reducing the juice over low heat)

  • 10 dried prunes (ayurvedic option: soaked in water overnight)

  • 3 tbs olive oil

  • Salt and pepper to taste

Procedure

Finely grind the walnuts using a food processor or coffee grinder. Heat one tablespoon of oil in a heavy bottom pan and set over medium heat. Add onions and cook until the onion is soft and translucent.

Add saffron water and ground coriander, stir. Add grounded walnuts; stir back and forth to prevent sticking. Continue to cook until the walnuts begin to release their oil – should take about a minute or so.

Now add the pomegranate molasses and a cup or more of water (if the sauce seems to thicken, add more water). Add salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a simmer. Add the prunes, and then give it another stir or two.

Lower the heat; simmer for about 45 minutes to an hour. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.

Bon Appetit!


 

Lilamaya (Liliana Galvis)

Liliana was born in Bogota, Colombia, South America. She moved to Canada at the age of 15 where she studied and later established herself as a fitness professional. She studied at the University of Ottawa followed by training in sports therapy specializing in massage and remedial bodywork at Raworth College of Natural and Sports Therapies, in Surrey, England. Determined to learn more, in 2009 Liliana immersed herself in the studies of Ayurveda (The ancient Hindu science of health and medicine).
Yoga and Pilates were a natural progression for Liliana after being an instructor, dancer, personal trainer and educator.
Ayurveda (from the Sanskrit word ‘yurveda’, meaning  ‘yu’, life, health, combined with ‘veda’, knowledge, lore) is an integral part of the great system of Vedic knowledge – which states that all universe is”ONE SELF”, and that the key to cosmic knowledge lies within our own minds and hearts.                                                                                              
Liliana’s Ayurvedic training took place at The Art of Living North American ashram situated in Quebec, Canada, one of only a select few institutions in the Americas that offer traditional and practical training in this ancient discipline.
Initially trained in Hatha yoga, Liliana has been studying and following a series of different practices combined with remedial bodywork for 12 years both in Canada and England.   
Liliana is known for her clear communication skills that she employs in her classes and her retreats as well as on television.   She has worked professionally as a co-host for the internationally acclaimed fitness TV show, “Kardio knockout”, which aired in over 150 different countries around the globe. 
Amongst many other hobbies, she enjoys photography and writing. She currently freelances as a writer for Yoga Magazine based in London (UK) along with a variety of health and wellness publications in Canada. 
Focusing more on a holistic approach to her teaching style, she has merged different disciplines of the east and west into a powerful and challenging vinyasa flow class which can be adapted and modified depending on the level of the participant yogi.
Her love for movement and wellness continues to develop and her practice grows and evolves with each experience along the journey of life.
Personal Motto: “Learn – Share – Inspire”
Website: Lily Pod Yoga
Blog: Lilypodyoga.wordpress.com
Facebook: Lily Pod Yoga Ayurveda
Twitter:  @LilyPodYoga

LinkedIn: Liliana Galvis


 

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