03 August 2013

Nutritious Pomegranate - Invaluable gift from God's paradise

Pomegranate ( Botanical Name :Punica granatum) is one of the oldest well known fruit which has stupendous values. It is categorized under shrub which is also said to be tree by some researchers. Its height ranges from 16 to 26 ft. Pomegranate is said to be a native of Persia. But it is widely cultivated in Africa, The Mediterranean, Europe, Indian subcontinents and in the Southeast Asia. It is considered under one of the powerful fruits.

As we move back to history, Pomegranate was said to be one among the oldest fruits since it was seen right from 100 B.C. The pomegranate is considered as a sacred tree in various religions. Almost every religion considered that the fruit has an eternal value. Many believe that it symbolizes prosperity,resurrection of Christ, fruitfulness, ambition and fertility. Ancient peoples considered this fruit as 'King of all fruits' and the most interesting fact about this fruit is that the crown shaped edge at the top of this Pomegranate fruit is said to be one of the reasons behind design of crowns that was used to honor the kings.

Pomegranate cultivation in India :

                  One of the major advantage about Pomegranate is, its drought - tolerance capacity. Hence it can also be cultivated in areas with hot climatic conditions. Among the world countries, India comes under a part of largest Pomegranate productions. As per National Horticulture Board in India, Pomegranate is commercially cultivated in Maharashtra at large scale. Whereas in states like Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Punjab and Rajasthan there are cultivated at small scale. I read somewhere that about 60-70 percent export of Pomegranate from India comes from Maharashtra. In India, the Pomegranate plants generally grown throughout the year. It is said that the tree takes almost 4 to 5 years to bear fruits and once the fruit starts appearing it takes 120 - 130 days to get ready for the harvest.

Pomegranate Tree at Vellore

Images Courtesy : Internet
The image at the right is from my capture taken during an evening at Ratnagiri temple, Vellore, Tamil Nadu

The Pomegranate fruit may take such a long time to harvest, but I would say its quite worth waiting for such an astonishing fruit. The reason behind the words 'worth waiting' can be found below :

Astonishing values of Pomegranate :

                    ~* Pomegranate are said to be purely antioxidants. These Pomegranate seeds avoids blood clotting and it is said that it acts like aspirin tablet.

                    ~* Pomegranate seeds are very much good for the human heart. It is said to increase oxygen levels to the heart when consumed as juice.

                    ~* Pomegranate helps to reduce the risks of heart diseases, breast cancer, atherosclerosis (disease of arteries) and cholesterol. It also helps to control high blood pressure.

                    ~* It helps you to control your weight, fights against cell damage and it minimizes aging. This fruit helps you to avoid wrinkles in skin and helps to have a healthy skin.

                    ~* Pomegranate is used in the Ayurveda medicines over thousands of years. It is used to cure diarrhea, dysentery and intestinal diseases.

                    ~* The Pomegranate juice helps to prevent the risk of heart diseases, prevents viral infections and it helps to slowdown the worsening of human cartilage.

                    ~* Pomegranate is rich in fiber which helps proper digestion. Regular intake of this fruit helps to improve immunity and blood circulation since it is also rich in Vitamin-C.

                    ~* It also helps in reducing dental plaques(that causes tooth decay). The juice helps for strong teeth.

                     ~* The fruit and juice is used is said that it may prevent stroke and helps in reducing Alzheimer's disease.

                     ~* Since this fruit has natural sugars it is said to be safe for diabetes.

                     ~* It helps in fighting bone loss and helps during menopause.

Culinary Use :

                    ~* The seeds of the fruit can be taken directly or can be consumed in form of juice which has more advantage.The Pomegranate juice can be added in soups, sorbets and can also be used as flavors in cakes.

                    ~* Pomegranate seeds can be used in salads to increase the taste as well as to garnish.

                    ~* One of my personal experience is my mother used to sprinkle the Pomegranate seeds over the curd rice and give it. Just try this if you like. It tastes good and also adds nutritious value.

After reading this now, you might have understood why I said its worth waiting for this fruit. Make use of this wonderful invaluable gift from God's own nature.

I hereby thank my mother for suggesting me to post about Pomegranate.

Sources :  globalhealingcenter.com
                National Horticulture Board.

Thanks for reading :)