Wednesday, July 6, 2011

P O M E G R A N A T E ...YUMY !!!



What do Oprah Winfrey, Heidi Klum and Laurence Fishburne have in common? Pomegranate juice! These celebrities along with fellow pomegranate devotees Kim Catrall and Calista Flockhart are part of the latest healthy Hollywood trend. Why is this ancient fruit all the rage in tinsel town? Because health conscious stars are always searching for foods and supplements that will keep them looking amazing and help them to maintain a healthy weight. Pomegranates can help to do both. It's rumored that Laurence Fishburne first used nutrient-rich pomegranate juice to help get into shape to film the Matrix movies.

One of nature's richest sources of antioxidants, Pomegranates contain more polyphenol antioxidants than green tea, blueberries, cranberries and red wine. This makes them a powerful tool to help combat heart disease, premature aging, Alzheimer's disease and even cancer.

Studies published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that pomegranate juice lowered blood pressure in people with hypertension. The study found that blood pressure was reduced up to 5 percent after two weeks spent consuming pomegranate juice. Additional research done on the thickness of the carotid artery found that subjects drinking 8 ounces of pomegranate juice a day for one year found the thickness of the artery did not worsen, and in some cases decreased by up to 30%, showing the correlation between consumption of the juice and a reduction in the risk for heart disease. This remarkable food is also thought to help protect against cancers of the skin and breasts.




The design of this vibrant fruit itself helps to control calorie intake. With red, thick skin pomegranates can take some time to eat, and they are incredibly satisfying. At only 120 calories per serving this is a definite plus for anyone watching their weight. So with all these nutritional benefits, what's the best way to incorporate pomegranates into your diet? The fruit is in season in October and is available at most natural food retailers and supermarkets. It's excellent by itself, or in salads or smoothies.

Want to drink your pomegranate? Pomegranate juice is flying off the shelves. It's an easy way to get the antioxidant benefits pomegranates have to offer. With a slightly tart taste, you can find Pomegranate juice mixed with other juices or plain.

P O M E G R A NA T E IN THE QUR'AN

by Moulana M. S Navlakhi, Theological Director, SANHA

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According to the Qur'an, pomegranates grow in the gardens of paradise (55:068).[61] The Qur'an also mentions pomegranates twice (6:99, 6:141) as examples of good things God creates.


THE POMEGRANATE

Pomegranates are native of Iran and they are also found in India, Afghanistan and Syria. The pomegranate is a highly delicious juicy fruit. It has been used as a medicine since ancient times. Good quality pomegranates were grown in the Hanging Gardens of Babylon and were also known in ancient Egypt. During the time of Prophet Musa (Moses), alaihis salaam, quality pomegranates were in cultivation throughout Palestine, Syria and Lebanon. The city of Rimmon was well known for its quality pomegranates. (The Arabic name for pomegranate is Rumman.)

Pomegranates were introduced into Spain after the Islamic influence reached there. They eventually made their way to England in the thirteenth century. Later, the Spanish took this important fruit plant to the new world, Mexico and Florida. Its cultivation gradually spread to other countries too and now it is grown in almost every tropical and sub-tropical climate. Presently good quality pomegranate comes from Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan, Syria, Morocco and Spain. In India, Sholapur is famous for juicy pomegranate fruit known as Anar. In Turkey pomegranates are served during important feasts.

An average size pomegranate has 65 calories. Its juice is easily digestible and contains about 15% invert sugar. It is a rich source of sodium and a good source of riboflavin, thiamin, niacin, vitamin C, calcium and phosphorous.

Pomegranates have been mentioned in the Quran and the Hadith as follows:

It is HE Who sends down rain from the skies; with it WE produce vegetation of all kinds: from some WE produce green (crops), out of which WE produce grain, heaped up (at harvest); out of the date palm and its sheaths (or spathes) (come) clusters of dates hanging low and near: and (then there are) gardens of grapes, and olives, and pomegranates, each similar (in kind) yet different (in variety): when they begin to bear fruit, feast your eyes with the fruit and the ripeness thereof. Behold! in these things there are Signs for people who believe. (Al-Anيaam - 99)

It is HE Who produceth gardens, with trellises and without, and dates, and tilth with produce of all kinds, and olives and pomegranates, similar (in kind) and different (in variety): eat of their fruit in their season, but render the dues that are proper on the day that the harvest is gathered. But waste not by excess: for ALLAH loveth not the wasters. (Al-Anيaam - 141)

In them will be Fruits, and dates, and pomegranates: Then which of the favors of your Lord will you deny? (Ar-Rahman - 68-69)

Anas bin Malik, radiya ALLAHu anhu, narrated that the Prophet, salla ALLAHu alaihi wa sallam, said: "There is not a pomegranate which does not have a pip from one of the pomegranates of the Garden (of Jannah) in it."

Ali bin Abi Talib, radiya ALLAHu anhu, narrated that the Prophet, salla ALLAHu alaihi wa sallam, said: "Pomegranate and its rind strengthen digestion (stomach)."

Pomegranate is a good food and a medicine of great value. It is a tonic for heart patients, highly efficacious in the inflammation of the stomach and effective to check heart pain. The juice of the fruit is an excellent cooling beverage and allays thirst. It acts as a good medicine for both diarrhea and dysentery. For many ailments such as colitis, anemia, jaundice, high blood pressure, piles and arthritis, its juice is an effective medicine. When given with honey, it reduces biliousness. Pomegranate fruit is also prescribed in many disorders under the Homeopathic medicine system.

The decoction of the root bark of pomegranate, which contains an alkaloid pellatrierine and tannic acid, is a highly useful medicine for the expulsion of worms, including tapeworms. This decoction is also reported to be effective for tuberculosis.

The rind of the pomegranate fruit is greatly responsible for its good keeping quality. The fruit can be kept for up to six months. The rind also contains a high percentage of tannic acid and is sometimes used for tanning leather. Pomegranate rinds were once used to tan the well-known Moroccan and Spanish leather.

According to Unani medicine, the ideal time to eat pomegranate is after lunch. Take out the seeds, sprinkle with a little salt and black pepper and swallow the juice after chewing the seeds. This way of eating is beneficial in chronic constipation and indigestion. It also soothes the nerves and stimulates the liver. Authorities of Unani medicine also maintain that persons doing tedious mental work should eat the fruit in the late afternoon. Another way of using the fruit advantageously is to press out the juice, add a little sugar and drink it. This produces blood, promotes good health and refreshes the brain.

Pomegranate is useful for the following ailments and conditions: Anal Itching Itching in the anal region is often the result of parasites in the intestines that go to the anal area to lay their eggs causing local itching. Roast the skin of the pomegranate until it is dark brown and brittle. Crush the powder to a fine texture; mix with a little edible oil and apply over the anus.

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Bad Vision or Weakening Eyesight
Fill fresh sweet pomegranate juice in a small bottle; leave in the sun. The juice will thicken in a few days. This is excellent for the eyes. Apply in the eyes. The more mature the juice becomes the more effective it is.

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Bleeding Piles

Pound about ten grams of the skin of the sour variety of the fruit. Boil in about 250 ml water. Sweeten with sugar and drink in the morning and evening.

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Diarrhea

The skin of the fruit is valuable in the treatment of diarrhea. About 20 grams of the skin and 3 grams of cloves or cinnamon should be boiled well in about 250 ml of water. When cool, the patient should drink 30 to 40 ml of the liquid three times a day for a few days.

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Digestive and Kidney Disorders, Poor Appetite, and Diminished Sexual Power

Pour about one and half liters of the juice in a bowl until the sediments settle. Separate the juice from the sediments and sieve through a clean cloth. Pour in a bottle so that it fills it to two thirds. Add 250 grams of candy sugar and ten grams of ground fennel. Leave in the sun for a week but shake it a number of times daily. Take 30 - 100 grams once a day.

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Earache

Mix a little honey with a teaspoon of the juice of the fruit. Warm the mixture and administer two to three drops into the affected ear. The ache should disappear.

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Hoarseness or Loss of Voice

Boil about 20 grams of the skin and two to three grams of alum in 250 ml water. Use the liquid for gargling.

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Intestinal Worms

The root-bark of the pomegranate tree is highly toxic to intestinal worms. Boil the bark of a two-inch long root in a cup of water. Half a cup of the decoction should be given three times a day at intervals of two hours to an adult. Two hours after the last dose he should be given castor oil to purge the system. The dose for children is 1/3 of the adult.

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Poor Appetite and Digestive Disorders

Make regular use of the pure juice of the fruit in the case of poor appetite. The juice is also good in simple colitis in which the colon is inflamed, characterised by diarrhea; and mucous colitis in which the mucous membrane of the colon is inflamed, characterised by colicky pain, and constipation or diarrhea. The juice is an excellent remedy in dysentery, inflammation and ulceration of the lower part of the colon, characterised by pain and diarrhea with bloody stools and mucus. For nausea and morning sickness characterised by excessive secretion of bile, a tablespoon of the fresh juice mixed with an equal quantity of honey, is an effective remedy.

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Stomach-ache

Sprinkle a little salt and pepper on the fresh seeds and eat.

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Teeth and Gum Disorders

Regular use of the toothpowder of the rind helps in preventing and curing tooth decay and gum disease. It cleans the teeth, leaving them sparkling white. To make the powder, dry the rind in the sun until it is brittle. Powder, mix with a little fine black pepper and store in a jar. Use everyday with a toothbrush, or apply and rub with a finger.

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