The beneficial effects of pomegranate (Punica granatum L.) consumption on human health: a review
The pomegranate (Punica granatum L.) is a small tree or shrub, which is grown in large parts of the world. The medicinal properties of this plant are known since ancient times and are due to the phytochemical constituents found in the plant. This review describes the therapeutic effects of pomegranate, which are reported in the scientific literature. We performed a literature search, using the PubMed database. We utilised this database to find the research articles published between 2000 and 2021, showing the medicinal properties of oral intake of pomegranate. We included 55 research articles and we found 11 beneficial effects of pomegranate consumption on human health. The therapeutic effects of this plant comprise those on diabetes, the cardiovascular system, oxidative status, the nervous system, cancer, colitis, metabolic syndrome and obesity, arthritis, the reproductive system, parasitic infections and skin health. Cardiovascular, antioxidant and antidiabetic activities are well reported in the scientific literature and the medicinal properties of pomegranate may be exerted by polyphenols found in the plant. This review shows the health benefits of oral intake of pomegranate. The most commonly reported beneficial activities of this plant are antioxidant, cardiovascular and antidiabetic effects. The polyphenol constituents of pomegranate may be responsible for its medicinal properties. Future research is needed to define the therapeutic effects of oral intake of this plant and the phytochemical compounds implicated in these activities.
Keywords: Pomegranate, Polyphenols, Therapeutic effects, Antioxidant, Cardiovascular, Antidiabetic