Pomegranate is a fruit that contains antioxidants and anti-inflammatory substances. Pomegranate juice may have a range of beneficial properties.

Possible benefits of pomegranate juice include being an antioxidant, which may help prevent cancer and other conditions, providing vitamin C, boosting digestive health, and reducing insulin resistance.

It may help with cancer prevention, immune support, and fertility.

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Here are some of the potential benefits of pomegranate:

1. Antioxidant effects

Pomegranate is rich in polyphenols, which are powerful antioxidants.

The antioxidants in fruits can help reduce levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS), a type of free radical, in the body.

The body produces ROS during metabolism and other processes. Exposure to toxins, such as tobacco smoke, can also increase ROS levels.

High levels of ROS can lead to oxidative stress, resulting in cell damage and inflammation. Oxidative stress may contribute to metabolic disease, cancer, and other health issues. Antioxidants help remove ROS from the body.

The antioxidants in pomegranate juice can help remove ROS and protect the body from damage.

2. Nutrient boost

Pomegranate contains many nutrients and is a good source of:

  • vitamin E, which is an antioxidant
  • vitamin K, which is essential for blood clotting
  • magnesium, which helps manage blood pressure and glucose levels

3. Cancer prevention

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) list pomegranate as one of the natural remedies that may help treat or prevent prostate cancer.

An older, 2014 research article notes that the polyphenols in pomegranate may aid in preventing the growth of cancer cells related to prostate cancer.

In mouse studies, researchers linked pomegranate fruit extract with a reduction in prostate-specific antigen levels and the inhibition of tumor growth.

Ingredients in pomegranate may also help prevent breast, lung, and skin cancer.

Further studies are now underway, according to the American Cancer Society.

4. Alzheimer’s disease

Ingredients in pomegranate juice may help prevent the formation of amyloid plaques in the hippocampus, some animal research suggests.

In an older study, mice consumed either a control diet or one that was 4% pomegranate. The authors found evidence that ingredients in pomegranate helped restore the activity of certain enzymes. The researchers suggest that pomegranate could have a role in treating Alzheimer’s disease.

A 2020 study in rodents found that pomegranate extract was effective in reducing the markers of Alzheimer’s disease in the brain.

5. Digestion

Some evidence indicates that pomegranate juice may benefit people with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and other bowel conditions due to its polyphenol content.

Studies in humans are underway to investigate whether pomegranate juice can improve markers of inflammation in people with IBD.

However, it is worth noting that some individuals have experienced diarrhea, a symptom of IBD, after consuming pomegranate.

6. Inflammatory conditions

Polyphenols have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. As a source of polyphenols, pomegranate could be suitable for treating various inflammatory conditions.

According to the authors of a 2017 review, evidence from rodent studies suggests that pomegranate extract might benefit people with conditions such as:

  • IBD
  • rheumatoid arthritis (RA)
  • metabolic and cardiovascular disorders

7. Arthritis

Molecular studies have indicated that ingredients in pomegranate extract could silence some of the genetic signals that contribute to osteoarthritis (OA). This suggests that pomegranate could help prevent the onset of this condition.

In a 2016 clinical trial, 38 people with OA of the knee consumed either pomegranate juice or no juice for 6 weeks. Results suggest that pomegranate juice helped reduce the breakdown of cartilage. The participants who consumed it reported better function and less stiffness than those who did not.

A 2021 review of 12 human, animal, and laboratory studies concludes that pomegranate extract could benefit people with RA due to its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.

8. Heart disease

Pomegranate juice may help lower blood pressure and protect the heart and arteries.

An older research article from 2012 found that pomegranate juice could reduce oxidative stress in the cardiovascular system and lower the risk of:

  • forming cholesterol
  • accumulating unhealthy fats, or oxidized lipids, in the blood vessels
  • developing atherosclerosis

9. Blood pressure

Drinking pomegranate juice daily may help lower systolic blood pressure.

One review found evidence of significant drops in blood pressure after consuming pomegranate juice. The authors note that regular consumption of this juice could be part of a heart-healthy diet.

10. Antimicrobial activity

People have used pomegranate for centuries for its antimicrobial properties.

Older laboratory studies have found evidence that pomegranate has antibacterial and antiviral effects, probably due to the ellagic acid and certain tannins it contains.

Based on these findings, scientists believe it could play a useful role in preserving food, including preventing contamination with salmonella.

There is not enough evidence to show that pomegranate can fight pathogens in humans.

In 2021, however, some laboratory tests suggested that compounds in pomegranate could help fight a mosquito-borne virus known as Mayaro virus.

11. Memory

Drinking pomegranate juice every day may improve learning and memory, according to an older study.

In the study, 32 people consumed either 8 ounces of pomegranate juice or other drink for 8 weeks. After 4 weeks, those who consumed pomegranate showed better scores on memory tests. fMRI scans also revealed increased brain activity during these tests.

In addition, blood tests showed they had higher antioxidant activity.

12. Sexual performance and fertility

Historically, people have associated pomegranate with fertility and abundance.

The antioxidants in pomegranate may mean it can help protect fertility. Older studies suggest oxidative stress can lead to sperm dysfunction in males and reduced fertility in females.

Research from 2014 has found that drinking pomegranate juice may increase the quality and motility of sperm. Motility is the movement that sperm needs to reach the egg.

13. Endurance and sports performance

According to a 2018 review, compounds present in pomegranate may help improve exercise performance and help with post-exercise recovery.

In a 2019 investigation, cyclists who consumed pomegranate took significantly longer to reach a point of exhaustion than those who did not.

14. Diabetes

In the Middle East, people traditionally consider pomegranate a medicinal plant and treatment for diabetes, and some evidence supports this.

Some older research suggests that the antioxidant activity in pomegranate could benefit people with type 2 diabetes. Specifically, there was evidence that compounds in pomegranate could help lower fasting blood glucose levels.

However, a 2020 review did not find that pomegranate extract had any benefit for people with type 2 diabetes.

One pomegranate contains around 39 grams of sugar. If a person with diabetes wishes to consume pomegranate juice, they should do so while keeping their glucose levels within limits agreed with a doctor.

15. Wound healing

Some researchers have used the flowers and extract of pomegranate to heal wounds, noting a significant decrease in the size of wounds treated in this way.

They also observed that the structure of the new skin was well-formed and that there were few inflammatory cells in the area.

This experiment did not involve drinking pomegranate juice, but it is further evidence of the pomegranate’s healing properties.

Here are some questions people often ask about pomegranate.

Is it good to drink pomegranate juice every day?

Some scientists have suggested including pomegranate juice as a routine part of the diet, as it has cardiovascular and other benefits.

How much pomegranate juice should you drink per day?

Most people can safely drink a serving of pomegranate juice most days as part of a varied diet.

However, anyone with a health condition should check first with a doctor that it is safe for them to increase their consumption of this juice.

One serving is 1 cup of 100% juice.

What are the side effects of pomegranate juice?

Pomegranate juice is safe for most people to consume.

However, the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health notes that the root, stem, and peel contain substances that may be harmful. Some people have reported diarrhea and allergic reactions.

Can people with diabetes drink pomegranate juice?

Pomegranate juice may have benefits for individuals with diabetes. However, a person should check with a doctor to ensure it is safe to consume within their meal plan.

They should also check that canned or bottled pomegranate juice does not contain added sugar.

What is the best time to eat pomegranate?

In the United States, pomegranates grow in California. The Pomegranate Council calls them “the jewel of autumn,” as this is when they are in season.

Pomegranate is a fruit that may have various health benefits. Its antioxidant properties can boost overall health and may help reduce the risk of some conditions.

It is best to check with a doctor before increasing the amount of pomegranate juice a person consumes to make sure it will not interfere with any medications they are taking.

People with diabetes should check with a doctor about the safest way to incorporate pomegranate into the diet.

Read the article in Spanish.