There has been some debate of late as to whether pomegranates should be added to the list of so-called superfoods, those foods which are believed to help prevent, heal and recover from disease due to their powerful nutritional content. Studies both in labs, in test tubes and on small groups of humans show promising results. Many people now believe adding pomegranate to your diet can be nothing but beneficial in the prevention and treatment of chronic lifestyle diseases like Type II diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, weight gain, clogged arteries, certain cancers and so on.
Pomegranates are berries which grow on a small shrub and it is the bright seeds which are eaten or juiced, the flesh and peel being tough and inedible.
These jewelled fruits are high in antioxidants, coming in at a massive 3 x those found in red wine and green tea, they are good sources of Vitamin A, C, and K, potassium, B5 and other B Complex compounds as well as being high in soluble and insoluble fibre. This makes pomegranates an effective anti-inflammatory weapon to help protect against asthma, arthritis, breast and colon cancers and diseases of the digestive tract.
Some studies indicate that daily pomegranate juice (unsweetened) may lower blood pressure, reduce the risk of heart attack and increase blood circulation and even reduce accumulated fat in arteries. It is also suggested this regimen can benefit heart patients by improving heart function and boosting immunity.
Due to its fat-clearing and anti-inflammatory properties, pomegranates can also help with weight loss as the fibre content helps reduce extra fat deposits and keep bowel movements regular.
All in all, this berry appears to lift above its weight in terms of nutritional and health benefits, so how do we use it?
I only recently started using pomegranates so I am still a novice, I have so far sprinkled the seeds on porridge on salad and in a smoothie.
This porridge bowl makes an excellent start to the day or if you prefer a lighter breakfast of juice or smoothie, you could have this later as I do and it will keep you going for hours.
This breakfast contains protein, fibre, calcium, magnesium, antioxidants, healthy fats, probiotics for a healthy gut and lots of vitamins and minerals.
All ingredients are organic, vegan and glutenfree.
1/2 Cup Porridge Oats
21/2 Cups Non-dairy Milk (I had homemade almond milk, see How To Make Almond Milk)
A Small Handful of Cashew pieces (presoaked if you have time, to make them easier to digest. Swap for seeds or tiger nuts if you are nut-free)
1 Tbsp Chia Seeds*
1 Tbsp Lucuma Powder* (it has a mildly malted flavour and is full of nutrients)
Seeds from Half a Pomegranate
Small Handful of Goji Berries*
1 Heaped Tbsp CoYo Coconut (ie non-dairy) Live Yogurt
Cook the oats in the milk on a medium heat, stirring to prevent lumps and sticking, when it’s nearly done add the cashews and mix in well
Remove from heat, add the chia seeds and lucuma powder, stirring well
Pour into a bowl and top with pomegranate seeds, goji berries and yogurt.
Of course, you could be really adventurous and try my Cauliflower Oats (Don’t Laugh, It’s a Thing!) with peanut butter, banana and pomegranate seeds!
Copyright: Chris McGowan