Pomegranates(Punica granatum) can definitely make an outstanding contribution to your nourishment. Some of the most recent research on pomegranates has focused on their unique combination of four nutrients--ellagic acid, caffeic acid, luteolin, and punicic acid--as its claim to fame in the cancer prevention (and especially prostate cancer prevention) area. There is no doubt that pomegranates contain some unique polyphenols that may be especially supportive in the area of cardiovascular health.
Pomegranates are not included in our list of World's Healthiest Foods primarily due to limited availability and accessibility. In many parts of the North America, pomegranates may only be available for a three-month period between September and November. In addition, they may be quite expensive. (It isn't unusual to pay US$3 for a single organic pomegranate). While we definitely encourage you to enjoy this fruit as an outstanding one in terms of health benefits, we did not find it sufficiently available and accessible to include on our original list of the World's Healthiest Foods.
Aviram M, Dornfeld L, Kaplan M, et al. Pomegranate juice flavonoids inhibit low-density lipoprotein oxidation and cardiovascular diseases: studies in atherosclerotic mice and in humans. Drugs Exp Clin Res. 2002; 28(2-3):49-62.
Cerda B, Soto C, Albaladejo MD, et al. Pomegranate juice supplementation in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease: a 5-week randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2006; 60(2):245-53.
Jimenez Del Rio M, Ramazanov A, Sikorski S, et al. A new method of standartization of health-promoting pomegranate fruit (punica granatum) extract. Georgian Med News. 2006; (140):70-7.
Lanskyl EP, Harrison G, Froom P, et al. Pomegranate (Punica granatum) pure chemicals show possible synergistic inhibition of human PC-3 prostate cancer cell invasion across Matrigel'. Invest New Drugs. 2005;23(2):121-122.
Mertens-Talcott SU, Jilma-Stohlawetz P, Rios J, et al. Absorption, metabolism, and antioxidant effects of pomegranate (Punica granatum l.) polyphenols after ingestion of a standardized extract in healthy human volunteers. J Agric Food Chem. 2006; 54(23):8956-61.
Singh RP, Chidambara Murthy KN, Jayaprakasha GK. Studies on the antioxidant activity of pomegranate (Punica granatum) peel and seed extracts using in vitro models. J Agric Food Chem. 2002; 50(1):81-6.