Introduction of Ingredients Part 2: Pomegranate Extract
This article is part of the series that introduced the ingredients in the Pineapple Soy Milk Series by Suzuki Herb Laboratory and covers pomegranate extract.
What Kind of Plant is the Pomegranate?
The pomegranate is a plant that has been cultivated as a fruit tree since over 5,000 years ago and even appears in the Old Testament and ancient medical books. It is believed to have traveled from its native habitat of Iran to locations like China, Europe, and other destinations along the Silk Road.
During autumn, its ripe fruits open wide, exposing the seeds covered in bright red seed coats that look as if they are going to spill out. From this appearance, the pomegranate has been widely accepted as a symbol of good harvests and ripening.
Use of Pomegranates as Medicine
Since long ago, pomegranates have always been seen as the “fruit of females” and thought to have beauty and health effects. Hippocrates, who is considered the father of western medicine, even mentioned pomegranates in his medical books.
The dried skin of pomegranates is also used in China as a traditional medicine called “Sekiryuhi (granatum rind)” serving as an astringent, intestinal regulator, hemostatic agent, and insecticide.
Effects of Pomegranates
Pomegranates are full of potassium. Potassium expels fluids and sodium from the body, which makes it effective in preventing swelling and high blood pressure.
Pomegranates have anthocyanin with antioxidative effects, such as delphinidin, cyanidin, ellagic acids, and other tannins, suggesting efficacy in preventing lifestyle diseases.
It is believed to be effective in preventing menopause since its seeds contain constituents with effects similar to female hormones (daidzin, genistein, and coumestrol).
Applying pomegranates to the skin and consuming them beautifies the skin by making it supple and glossy.
“Japanese Herb Encyclopedia” Shio Murakami, Tokyodo Shuppan
“Pictorial Book of Medicinal Plants” Kazuo Masuda, Kashiwa Shobo