Saturday, May 6, 2017
The Pomegranate - 'Punica granatum' - fam: Lythraceae
The pomegranate originated in the region of modern-day Iran, and has been cultivated since ancient times throughout the Mediterranean region and northern India. It was introduced into Spanish America in the late 16th century and California, by Spanish settlers, in 1769.
Today, it is widely cultivated throughout the Middle East and Caucasus region, north and tropical Africa, the Indian subcontinent, Central Asia, the drier parts of southeast Asia, and parts of the Mediterranean Basin. It is also cultivated in parts of Arizona and California. In recent years, it has become more common in the commercial markets of Europe and the Western Hemisphere.
The edible fruit is a berry, intermediate in size between a lemon and a grapefruit, 5–12 cms (2.0–4.7 ins) in diameter with a rounded shape and thick, reddish skin. The number of seeds in a pomegranate can vary from 200 to about 1400. Each seed has a surrounding water-laden pulp — the edible sarcotesta that forms from the seed coat — ranging in color from white to deep red, or purple. The seeds are embedded in a white, spongy, and astringent membrane 1.
Punicalagins is a compound found in pomegranates and is responsible for the strong antioxidant activity this fruit carries. A study found that punicalagins promotes a healthy coronary function while counteracting vascular inflammation and oxidative damage 2.
REFERENCES: Wikipedia 1 and Global Healing Center 2