Pomegranates!

It’s the season for pomegranates.

I have always loved this beautiful fruit. I remember my Mom buying me pomegranates when I was young. I still look forward to this time of year when fresh pomegranates are available in the grocery stores.

The job of breaking the fruit open and seeding it is not my favorite thing to do but it is worth it. Some things that we enjoy take a little labour to get to. This is one of those situations.

I find the easiest way to seed a pomegranate is to fill a large bowl with water. Cut the pomegranates into quarters. Put them in the bowl of water and work the seeds out of the pith while they are under water. This stops the juice from going everywhere and the seeds sink to the bottom of the bowl. Discard the pith as you go. When all seeds are removed from the pomegranate rind, drain them through a strainer. Pick out the little bits of pith that may be left in with the seeds. Store the juicy little gems in a glass covered storage container in the fridge. It is nice to have the seeds at the ready for munching or adding to salads or recipes.

Pomegranates are delicious, juicy, and so nutritious. In fact they are one of the most nutritious fruits out there.

A pomegranate contains many minerals, antioxidants and vitamins. There are two compounds that give the pomegranate it’s powerful punch. They are punicalagin and punic acid. And did you know that the pomegranate is three times more potent than red wine or green tea. Flavonol, which is the antioxidant found in red wine and grapes, tea, and chocolate is abundant in pomegranate seeds. Including flavonoids in your daily diet can help your body eliminate toxins. It’s a definite boost to your health because flavonoids help fight off free radicals at the cellular level. Consuming the fruit or drinking the juice is a big plus to your immune system and right now with Covid 19 out there, we need a strong immune system.

Another big plus to consuming pomegranate seeds is how they benefit your gut health. These powerhouse seeds are full of good amounts of prebiotic fiber which helps to keep your bowels working well and boost your digestive health overall. Plus the minerals and antioxidants in the fruit boost your microbia in your gut and colon.

The antioxidants in the pomegranate also help to thin your blood and help prevent arteries from building up plaque around your heart. A daily dose of pomegranate fruit will help keep the bad cholesterol from oxidizing. It’s good for your heart. Heart health is “job one”!

If your memory isn’t as sharp as it use to be. I relate to that. Adding pomegranate daily has been shown to improve memory. It’s also being studied in the treatment of Alzheimer’s.

I consume a lot of turmeric as an anti-inflammatory but pomegranate also helps to reduce inflammation in the body.

Pomegranate has many good qualities when broken down. One cup of the seeds contains 7 grams of fiber, 3 grams of protein, 16% of the RDI of potassium, 12% of the RDI of Vitamin C, 30% of the RDI for Vitamin K.

This Christmas, how about a MOCKTAIL with a powerful punch without the alcohol.

POMEGRANATE MOJITO

3 tbsp. Pomegranate seeds

1 large bunch of fresh mint

2 limes, quartered

4 cups of Pomegranate juice

2 cups lemonade

A day before, freeze ice cubes in a tray with pomegranate seeds in them.

Take 1/2 of mint and tear it into a large bowl with lime quarters. Mash the mint and lime to release the juicy flavours. (Using a mortar and pestle makes this part easy). Put the pomegranate juice and the lemonade and the mashed lime and mint in a large jug. Mix well. Put the special ice cubes into the glasses you will be serving the juice in. Pour the contents of the jug into the glasses and garnish with a wedge of lime and some fresh mint leaves.

Now that is one Christmas cocktail my tastebuds will enjoy. So will my body.

Cheers to your health.

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