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Monday is the first day of fall, which calls for celebration! Yes, it gets colder, which I admittedly hate, but it gets gorgeous and we get to eat yummy fall foods like pomegranates!! Keep reading for my all time favorite fall smoothie recipe.
Why We Love Pomegranates:
They are loaded with antioxidants. Foods rich in antioxidants can have tremendous effects on brain function. Antioxidants can prevent cell damage, repair damaged cells, and reduce chances of developing neurological diseases. Quick review: Antioxidants are the body’s scavengers of those damaging chemicals that tax our system and cause fatigue and lead to illness. Being that there are thousands of natural, protective antioxidants in fruits, vegetables, and other plant-based foods, a pill or processed food will never come close to what you’ll get from the whole food. Antioxidants have also been shown to slow the aging process.
Additionally, recent medical research studied heart patients with severe carotid artery blockages. They were given an ounce of pomegranate juice each day for a year. Not only did study participants’ blood pressure lower by over 12 percent, but there was a 30 percent reduction in atherosclerotic plaque. Just as astounding, participants who did not take the pomegranate juice saw their atherosclerotic plaque increase by 9 percent.(1)
In other studies, potent antioxidant compounds found in pomegranates have shown to reduce platelet aggregation and naturally lower blood pressure, factors that prevent both heart attacks and strokes.(2)
Not only are pomegranates good for your heart and blood vessels but they have been shown to inhibit breast cancer, prostate cancer, colon cancer, leukemia and to prevent vascular changes that promote tumor growth in lab animals.(3)
Ok, I know you’re busy, so onto the recipe!!
Chocolatey Pomegranate SmoothieServes 2
1 cup blueberries
1 large can coconut water or 2 cups almond milk
1 T raw cacao
1 generous fistful organic greens or 1 tsp greens powder
Option: 1-2 scoops favorite protein powder
Blend and enjoy!!
Photo: Anne Elise Parks1. Aviram M, Rosenblat M, Gaitini D, et al. Pomegranate juice consumption for 3 years by patients with carotid artery stenosis reduces common carotid intima-media thickness, blood pressure and LDL oxidation. Clin Nutr 2004;23(3):423-33. 2. Aviram M, Dornfeld L, Rosenblat M, et al. Pomegranate juice consumption reduces oxidative stress, atherogenic modifications to LDL, and platelet aggregation:studies in humans and in atherosclerotic apolipoprotein E-deficient mice. Am J Clin Nutr 2000;71(5):1062-76. Aviram M, Dornfeld L. Pomeganate juice consumption inhibits serum angiotensin coverting enzyme activity and reduces systolic blood pressure. Atherosclerosis 2001;158(1):195-8. 3. Kim ND, Mehta R, Yu W, et al. Chemopreventive and adjuvant therapeutic potential of pomegranate (Punica granatum) for human breast cancer. Breast Cancer Res Treat 2002;71(3):203-17. Kohno H, Suzuki R, Yasui Y, et al. Pomegranate seed oil rich in conjugated linolenic acid suppresses chemically induced colon carcinogenesis in rats.Cancer Sci 2004;95(6):481-6. Toi M, Bando H, Ramachandran C, et al. Preliminary studies on the anti-angiogenic potential of pomegranate fractions in vitro and in vivo. Angiogenesis 2003;6(2):121-8. Kawaii S, Lansky EP. Differentiation-promoting activity of pomegranate (Punica granatum) fruit extracts in HL-60 human promyelocytic leukemia cells. J Med Food 2004;7(1):13-8.
Melissa Schollaert is a Holistic Health & Nutrition Counselor and founder of Real Nutritious Living. Helping others achieve their health goals to attain their healthiest, happiest life is her greatest ambition.