By: Christian Dischler
With a flavor as delicious and it is elusive, the pomegranate has danced across the human palette for centuries. Originally from Northern India, these unassuming fruits are packed with nutrients beneficial to our health. Each pomegranate seed (called arils) contains high levels of antioxidants and phytochemicals. These nutrients provide an astronomical number of benefits. Ranging from anti-inflammatory properties, strengthening our blood cell counts, reducing protein buildup and calcification, dissolving gallstones or kidney stones, and restoring glucose levels to our liver. This tiny super food truly does it all.
According to an aggregate study published in the National Library of Medicine (NLM), “in Ayurvedic medicine, the pomegranate was considered to be a whole pharmacy unto itself.” Its ability to help prevent breast cancer is more important than ever. In a year where 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer, it’s important to be aware of how to prevent the disease before it’s too late.
Pomegranates contain polyphenols, antioxidants and specifically phytochemicals called ellagitannins—which are recognized medically for their ability to downregulate estrogen responsive genes. This is important in the prevention of breast cancer, because “steroid hormones, particularly estrogens, are believed to play a central role in development of breast cancer.” By reducing this influx of harmful hormones, we reduce our risk of developing breast cancer.
The ellagitannins contained in pomegranates actively regulate how these toxic hormones interact with our bodies, and help us manage their damage. Direct links have been drawn by medical studies, with the NLM stating that “several studies investigating the chemo preventative potential of pomegranate against breast cancer have highlighted the importance of antioxidant properties manifested in its components.” Furthermore, going on to recognize outright the “data suggest that intake of pomegranate may be a beneficial strategy for breast cancer chemoprevention.” In short, pomegranates flush out the bad hormones and promote the good.
Whether it’s the anti-estrogenic functionality of the pomegranate, or the antioxidant activity—there’s no reason to keep this super fruit out of your diet. Use it as a garnish on savory dishes like guacamole, or pick up a bottle of pomegranate juice to give yourself a boost midday. It will replenish your glucose levels and ensure your liver won’t need to pump cortisol into your blood to keep you going. However you choose to enjoy this remarkable fruit, your body will thank you for its restorative benefits and total wellness contributions to a cancer-free life.