According to a study, published in the Journal Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice, pomegranate reduces the risk of complications linked to obesity. A team of researchers in Iran and Australia conducted the respective study. It was a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study determining the potential of pomegranate extract against obesity and complications related to it.
The researchers tested the pomegranate extract on plasma inflammatory and oxidative stress biomarkers, as well as serum metabolic profiles, in overweight and obese individuals.
Obesity is a medical condition characterized by excess body fat that imposes negative effects on an individual’s health. Health complications related to obesity include,
- Type-II diabetes
- Heart diseases
- High blood pressure
- Gallbladder, fatty liver disease
- High cholesterol
- Sleep apnea and other breathing problems
- Cancers like breast, colon, and endometrial cancers
The researchers recruited 48 obese and overweight individuals for the study. They divided them into two groups,
- Treatment group
- Control group
The participants of the treatment group received 1000 milligrams (mg) of pomegranate extract every day for around 30 days. On the other hand, the control group received a placebo.
The research team measured the anthropometric parameters, dietary intake, plasma concentrations of malondialdehyde (MDA), interleukin-6, and hyper sensitive-C reactive protein to determine the effect of pomegranate extract against obesity. Moreover, they also analyzed the levels of serum lipids, glucose, and insulin at the start and end of the study.
The results of the study showed that pomegranate extract supplementation caused a significant reduction in the levels of glucose, insulin, total cholesterol, and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol. Moreover, it alleviated the plasma levels of MDA, IL-6, and hyper sensitive-C reactive protein. The treatment group also presented an increase in the levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol after consuming pomegranate extract.
These results led the researchers to conclude that taking pomegranate extract for 30 days may help lower the risk of complications related to obesity.
A pomegranate is a round, hard, shiny red-yellowish skinned fruit. It is concentrated with jewel-like inner seeds called arils. They can be eaten raw or juiced. Studies link pomegranate with many health benefits. Some of them are as follow,
Pomegranate is a nutrient-filled fruit. It offers a good amount of fibers and vitamins e.g. vitamin A, C, and some B vitamins. Moreover, it packs minerals, such as calcium, potassium, and iron. It contains two compounds called punicalagins and punic acid. Both of them are responsible for most of the health benefits of pomegranate.
The antioxidant activity of pomegranate is three times more than that of red wine and green tea. It can fight off the free radicals and reduce oxidative stress.
Several animal studies show that pomegranate consumption protects against bone loss.
Pomegranate boosts athletic performance among individuals. Research has shown that pomegranate juice enhances stamina and aerobic performance in athletes. A study shows that ingestion of pomegranate extract boosts sports performance involving alternating running within 30 minutes.
Pomegranate possesses anti-inflammatory properties. A number of studies show that pomegranate, pomegranate seed oil, and pomegranate juice may reduce markers of inflammation.
Pomegranate works wonders for the memory. According to studies, pomegranate and its juice improve cognitive functions.
Health experts advise people, who are using medications for high blood pressure like statins, to consume pomegranates and their juice cautiously as it may interact with these medications.