July 15th, 2015Pomegranate (Punica granatum)
by: Jo Franks, M.H.
This time of year you will find pomegranates in most grocery stores. There are a lot of interesting facts about this amazing fruit, which dates back thousands of years. The plant is a native of Persia and in the 18th century Spanish sailors introduced the plant to the southern United States. They have long been a symbol of prosperity and abundance. In Greek history it is considered good luck to smash a pomegranate on the ground at weddings and New Year’s. It is said that the number of seeds that fall out of the fruit, will be the number of children the married couple will have.
The Latin name for pomegranate (Punica granatum) means seeded apple. It is rich in nutrients and antioxidants, namely punicalagin. Studies have shown that this is effective in preventing platelets from sticking together and forming blood clots. It is also high in other polyphenols, tannins, quercitin, and anthocyanins which offer heart health and anti-cancer benefits. Pomegranates can also be beneficial for arthritis, increasing oxygen levels to the heart, heart disease, many types of cancer, diarrhea, and mental and emotional health.
Not only is the fruit delicious, very nutrient dense and full of anti-oxidants, but there are parts of the whole plant that are beneficial medicinally. The root bark has been used as a remedy for all kinds of parasites, including tapeworms. The fruit rind and flowers can be made into a tea for a sore throat. If the rind is dried and powdered, it can be used as a tooth powder for brushing the teeth.
We always recommend eating foods in their wholesome form. Enjoy the season of pomegranates! From all of us at The School of Natural Healing, have a Happy and Healthy New Year!
Jo Francks is a Master Herbalist graduate of The School of Natural Healing. She is also a Holistic Iridologist and Quantum Touch practitioner.
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