Pomegranate juice is a candidate to be a precious ally against chronic inflammation and tumors. Two very recent scientific studies clearly demonstrate the action of this elixir of life. But let's try to understand better.
Pomegranate juice against tumors, the study
The first research was published in the journal Frontiers in Oncology by a team from Saudi Arabia (Farhan et al, Front Oncol, 2022). The research was conducted in the laboratory, where anthocyanins, which are antioxidant substances extracted from pomegranate juice, were placed in contact with healthy cells and with cancer cells of the prostate, breast and pancreas. It emerged that the anthocyanins in pomegranate juice were able to inhibit the proliferation of diseased cells and induce their apoptosis, namely programmed death. Among the various anthocyanins extracted from pomegranate juice, delphinidin has proved to be the most effective. In addition, it is noteworthy that the anthocyanins of the pomegranate have made a selection between diseased cells and healthy cells, causing apoptosis only of the diseased cells. The authors of the study hypothesize that, at the basis of this selective action, there is an increase in copper ions in diseased cells. In fact, previous studies have shown that an increase in copper ions is observed, both in the blood and in the tissues, in the presence of cellular degeneration, even if it is not yet known whether this could be the cause or the consequence of the tumour. It is probable that the copper ions react with the antioxidants, of pomegranate in the case of the experiment, forming free radicals, which in turn cause mutations in the DNA of diseased cells and thus their elimination. The study showed that the antioxidants in pomegranate, and therefore also pomegranate juice, have a proven anticancer action. Similar results were also observed in the case of other types of antioxidants, such as curcumin in turmeric, epigallocatechin three gallate in green tea and resveratrol in grapes.
Pomegranate juice against inflammation and damage caused by COVID 19, the study
The second study was published in the journal Complementary Therapies in Medicine by a Spanish and Iranian team (Yousefi et al, Complement Ther Med, 2023). The research tried to understand whether the intake of pomegranate juice in patients hospitalized for COVID 19 can help counteract the consequent increase in inflammation and the alteration of the blood picture. For this purpose, 50 people were recruited, all hospitalized following COVID 19 infection. Half of the participants were asked to drink 500 ml of pomegranate juice every day for 2 weeks. The other half received a placebo instead. After two weeks, those who drank pomegranate juice showed a significant reduction in circulating pro-inflammatory substances, a sign that the levels of inflammation had reduced. Not only that, blood tests also showed a clear improvement, both in terms of levels of white blood cells and platelets. Research shows that pomegranate juice may also help fight inflammation and make you recover faster from a viral infection. In the case study, infection with COVD 19 was analyzed but the results can also be extended to other viruses.
Here are two recent scientific studies that confirm the importance of nutrition for a long and healthy life. Pomegranate juice and pomegranate are two valuable sources of antioxidants, among which anthocyanins, proanthocyanidins, flavonols, punicalagins and ellagic acid stand out. These substances give the drink, which, unlike the fruit, can be found all year round in supermarkets and specialized shops, antiviral, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective properties. So, green light to pomegranate juice, which is also sweet and delicious and therefore is drunk even more willingly!