Do You or Someone You Love Suffer From Atherosclerosis,
Prostate or Breast Cancer?
Let’s Talk Pomegranate’s
Pomegranates are not a new fruit juice—but the human clinical studies are. Based on these findings, it may now be possible for people with severe atherosclerosis to reverse it. Those who have relatively healthy arteries to begin with might be able to significantly delay or prevent the onset of atherosclerosis.
If all this fruit did was protect our inner arterial wall (the endothelium), then it may be the most important agent that aging humans could ingest. What has scientists most excited, however, is a new human study showing that this fruit dramatically slowed the progression of prostate cancer in those who already failed conventional treatment.
These expensive human studies were conducted based on an abundance of test tube and live animal data indicating this fruit will prevent and treat vascular disease and prostate cancer. These same test tube studies show that this fruit will also be effective against breast cancer.
Prescription medications can slow the progress of atherosclerosis, but they rarely reverse it. To significantly reduce human mortality, a way to stop age-associated arterial deterioration must be found. As you will soon read, this may have been achieved in humans with a fruit that functions via mechanisms quite different from conventional drugs.
Government agencies caution consumers to be leery of health products that promise “miraculous” results. The reason for these warnings is that unscrupulous companies continue to make outlandish claims with little scientific substantiation to back them.
While it may be too early to promise “miraculous benefits” in response to ingesting this fruit, the human studies supporting it are miraculous from a scientific standpoint.
While certain drugs, nutrients, and hormones can slow the progression of atherosclerosis, very little has ever been shown to reverse existing artery disease.
One reason it is so difficult to reverse atherosclerosis is that arterial disease is primarily caused by aging itself (via the destructive process known as endothelial dysfunction). This means that a person with atherosclerosis has to first stop the artery-damaging process and then reverse the damage and occlusion to the arterial wall that has accumulated over a lifetime.
Atherosclerosis can be measured in humans by conducting an ultrasound test of the carotid arteries in their necks. An ultrasound provides a specific reading of the narrowing (or blockage) that has occurred by measuring the thickness of the inner and middle walls of the carotid artery. This is known technically as an intima-media thickness test (IMT).
A controlled human study was conducted involving patients with severe carotid artery narrowing (stenosis). One group received conventional drugs only (statins and anti-hypertensives), while the other group received pomegranate juice plus the same drugs. The findings observed in the pomegranate group were unprecedented.
After one year, the group receiving the drugs, but not pomegranate showed a significant 9% increase in intima-media thickness. In contrast, the group receiving the pomegranate juice plus drugs showed a reduction in carotid intima-media thickness as follows:
Carotid artery blood flow improved in the pomegranate plus drugs group as follows:
- After three months: 16%
- After six months: 20%
- After nine months: 31%
- After one year: 44%
Blood samples were collected before and during treatment with pomegranate in these patients with narrowed carotid arteries. The changes shown in the box above help explain why pomegranate so effectively reversed carotid intima-media thickness.
Another blood test used in this study measured paraoxonase-1, an antioxidant enzyme produced in the body. Paraoxonase-1 is associated with beneficial HDL and is believed to protect against the oxidation of LDL. Low levels of paraoxonase-1 predict increased severity of coronary artery disease. In patients administered pomegranate, the paraoxonase-1 levels increased by 83% after only one year!
After one year of taking pomegranate, there was also a 21% decrease in systolic blood pressure and more than 50% reduction in measured free radical activity in the carotid atherosclerotic plaque.
The scientists attributed the regression in carotid atherosclerotic lesion size in the pomegranate group to significantly reduced oxidative stress in both blood and atherosclerotic plaques, along with modestly lower blood pressure (beyond that of the anti-hypertensive drugs that were prescribed).
LDL basal oxidative state Reduced by 90%
LDL susceptibility to copper-induced oxidation Reduced by 59%
Total antioxidant status Improved by 130%
What Makes Pomegranate So Special?
Numerous studies show that pomegranate is nature’s most powerful antioxidant. The remarkable effect of pomegranate against various human disorders, however, makes one question whether there is more to this fruit than just its free radical suppressing effects.
One answer to this question lie in the fact that pomegranate is absorbed into the bloodstream far more efficiently than other fruit extracts. One study showed a pomegranate extract to be 95% absorbed, which is far greater than any polyphenol-containing fruit extract of its kind.
Pomegranate also suppresses a dangerous inflammatory cytokine called interleukin-1 beta. As humans age, increases in interleukin-1 beta wreak havoc in tissues throughout the body. Pomegranate has been shown to alleviate a host of inflammatory-related disorders. As many of you already know, chronic inflammation can exacerbate atherosclerosis and cancer.Another reason that pomegranate has displayed such incredible clinical findings is that it contains a unique polyphenol group called punicalagins. Not only do punicalagins display potent antioxidant effects, but they also interfere with growth factors needed by cancer cells to propagate. By down-regulating these pathological growth factors, punicalagins have been shown to induce the destruction (apoptosis) of common cancer cells.
Where to Obtain Pomegranate
Pomegranate juice is now found in supermarkets and every health food store.
The first complaint most people have about pomegranate juice is its high cost. One concern expressed by health conscious people is, like all fruit juices, pomegranate juice is very high in sugar.
The high calorie content of sugar-laden beverages is a concern for anyone seeking to maintain a healthy body weight and control their sugar intake. Adding extra calories also accelerates various aging processes, which would negate some of the beneficial effects of the polyphenols naturally contained in pomegranate.
The good news is that proprietary extraction methods have been developed to enable consumers to obtain pomegranate’s active constituents without having to ingest the sugar calories or pay the high prices charged for pomegranate juices.