Dec 2009 Article
By Dr. Jo Gjelsten
This is December…the time of year when we shop, wrap packages, and think about expelling our tapeworms, huh Tammie? That’s when you reach for the pomegranate, any way you can get it. Ok, until I started to research pomegranate’s role in your health I didn’t know about the tape worms either, but though pomegranates have been around since biblical times, it wasn’t until “1804, when a practitioner in India cured an Englishman of tapeworm infestation”, that anyone in Merry Olde payed attention. “Pomegranate is believed to contain an unusual alkaloid content, called pelletierine, which was discovered in 1878, and apparently effective when expelling worms and parasites from the intestinal tract.” And I’m thinking “what a great way to wake you up out of your carb stupor” as you sit at Runcible or wherever you’re reading this. Hold onto your lunch a little while longer, as I go on and on about pomegranate Grannie. As the ad says, “so you know you’re ready when the time is right” though that refers to a big, or lack of a big problem, which could cause you to go deaf…I SAID IT COULD CAUSE…nevermind…..my point here is to be ready when all that glop you and I have been eating around these Fatty Food Holidays decides to take up residence in our arteries. What does that have to do with pomegranate? Plenty, or at least maybe a little. You think green tea and red wine have antioxidants? Well, pomegranate has three times the polyphenol antioxidants than those other guys. And it prevents plaque in ‘yer arteries. How, Howie? It reduces LDL cholesterol oxidation by preventing your flaming inflamed, flamboyantly, inflammatory, inflammation from becoming inflamed, if you get my drift. A bad thing; when it (inflammation, did I mention that?) happens in the lining of your arteries, pow, or POW, you build a little plaque city of fatty dams that eventually don’t let your blood flow, or break off and kill you the first chance they get the little bastards! The ironic thing is that the seeds (pomegranates in case you fell asleep there) remind me of little red blood cells or blood red corn, which is why I was a bit sickened looking at them most of my life, and now that I mention it I’m getting queasy but the seeds (arils) are eatable and good for you no matter how nauseous you may be looking at them so suck it up and try some Dr Jo. Ok I will. I’ll be right back. Ok I’m back. I really like the juice. You can eat the seeds or chew them and spit them at your sister. Your choice. Because of its antioxidant power, which prevents free radicals, the cause of aging, a daily dose of this stuff may help reduce wrinkles and help to slow down aging, whether you use it inside or outside the skin. You may look like a big beet after wallowing in it, but you won’t look a day over the day before yesterday. Pomegranates have many vitamins, like B’s and C, and minerals like iron and calcium, phosphorus and potassium, and “Researchers at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine claim that Pomegranate shows major promise in the fight against prostate cancer. Pomegranate juice has been shown to suppress inflammatory cell signaling, inhibit prostate tumor growth and lower serum PSA levels. In vitro studies using human cancer cells, the higher the dose of Pomegranate extract the cells received, the more cells died”, and this fruit has amazing antiviral, antiseptic and astringent properties; the extract can improve periodontitis. It can also inhibit fat absorption in the intestines and suppressed the appetites of lab mice which doesn’t surprise me for some reason. To eat, cut off about ½” of the top. Score into 4 or 6 sections, then pull apart. Then you have to “flick” the seeds, those that didn’t shoot across the room, out of the “pith” over a bowl of water. OMG I can’t stop laughing…try not to mix up your “pith” with the other “pith” and the “membranes” which makes me so hungry just thinking about “membranes”, and the pith go together, both of which float on top of water like skin as the pits drop like little blood cells down to the bottom of your bowl, causing your stomach to growl in anticipation of chewing this wild and crazy fruit . Don’t forget to wear a blood red shirt if you don’t want to look like a mass murderer; this fruit stains very nicely. No wonder your tape worms want to escape. Good fruit for Halloween. Have fun flicking your seeds Florence. Don’t eat your pith.
Pomegranate Smoothie, An Antidote for Holiday Fooling Around With Food
1 cup pomegranate juice (fresh is best)
2 cups vanilla yogurt (you can use fat-free, organic . . . whatever you like)
1 banana (optional)
1 tsp ground flax seed (optional)
1 tsp honey (optional, for sweetness)
pomegranate seeds (optional)
Place ingredients in blender. Cover and blend until smooth. Pour into glasses and top with pomegranate seeds if desired. Makes 2-4 servings.
NOTE: Nothing in this article should be construed as medical advice. It is informational in purpose only and taken from numerous readily available articles written by physicians and researchers. For medical advice consult with an informed physician.
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