A pomegranate is a beautiful red fruit with nutritious arils. This unique superfood may be tricky to open, but it’s worth learning how so you can reap its many health benefits.
The pomegranate comes from Punica granatum, a fruit-bearing shrub in the Lythraceae family. Opening the tough, leathery skins of pomegranates reveals clusters of edible seeds called
arils. Pomegranate arils are full of juice, but they’re covered in inedible white pith, as previously noted. Here Ralph Flores, NaturalNews.com, reflects on adding pomegranate peels to macaroni to improve antioxidant content and lower cholesterol levels:
“Pasta often gets a bad rap for being a carb-heavy food. But a recent study shows that fortifying it with pomegranate peels can improve its dietary fiber and antioxidant content. In their report, researchers from Taif University in Saudi Arabia evaluated macaroni fortified with pomegranate peels for nutritional value and taste.
Pomegranate peel-fortified macaroni helped reduce cholesterol markers
The team prepared five types of macaroni blends for the study. These were fortified with pomegranate peel in differing ratios – from 10 grams of peel to 90 g of semolina flour to 25 g of peel to 75 g of semolina flour. These were then fed to diabetic rats for four weeks. At the end of the experiment, the team took blood samples from the rats and assessed total cholesterol, triglyceride and total lipid levels, among others.
The results revealed that rats fed with macaroni fortified with pomegranate peel exhibited a significant decrease in body weight after the experiment period. In addition, the team noted a decrease in lipid profile and blood sugar in the rats after feeding them with the pomegranate peel-fortified macaroni.
An evaluation of the chemical composition of pomegranate peel reveals that it is a rich source of antioxidants – in particular, tannins, anthocyanins and flavonoids. Earlier studies on pomegranate peel revealed its potential for inhibiting the growth and spread of certain cancers. (Related: Pomegranate may help reduce the risk of certain cancers – study.)
Pomegranate peel also contains soluble and insoluble dietary fiber, which may lower the risk of chronic diseases like diabetes, heart disease and certain cancers. In an unrelated study, researchers from Iran explored the use of pomegranate seed powder as a flour additive, where they found that it increased the fiber content of the final baked product.”
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