The Important Role Pomegranates Play in Human History
Punica granatum is the botanical name for pomegranates, and it indicates they originated in Roman Carthage, which is now Tunisia. The typically pinkish-red fruit is aesthetically pleasing and fascinatingly crucial for many cultures and groups of people. Although you might not think they stand out from the rest of the fruit, you must understand the important role pomegranates play in human history.
Although the medicinal purposes of pomegranates hold most of their value today, they initially had a religious purpose. Fascinatingly, pomegranates aren't the only fruits with sacred significance across religions.
Zoroastrianism is an Iranian religion, and it's also one of the world's oldest monotheistic religions. Interestingly, many scholars believe it influenced several other faiths and organizations that numerous people still practice today.
They used pomegranates as a part of their domestic and ritual observances, and this fruit played a significant role in Persian mythology. The figure Isfandiyar consumes a pomegranate and becomes invincible as a result. In addition, another figure named Herodotus refers to the golden pomegranates adorning the Persian warriors' spears in his work, The Persian Wars.
Along with peaches and citrus fruits, pomegranates are one of the three blessed fruits in Buddhism. In fact, Buddhist art portrays pomegranates as the essence of favorable influences. Additionally, Buddhist legend mentions the Buddha curing the demoness Hariti of her evil habit of devouring children by feeding her a pomegranate.
The Chinese depict the fruit in ceramic art to symbolize fertility, abundance, numerous and virtuous offspring, and a blessed, positive future. Many fruits, including pomegranates, are nutritious for your body and soul alike.
The pomegranate has a few sacred meanings in Christianity, some being resurrection and everlasting life. Opening the rough peel to expose the sweet, red seeds symbolizes the Passion of Christ because Jesus' suffering resulted in endless abundance for all.
Because medieval depictions show pomegranates in statues and paintings of the Virgin Mary and baby Jesus, scholars believe early Christians used pomegranates to symbolize fertility.
Jewish people believe each pomegranate has 613 seeds: one to represent each of the Bible's 613 commandments. Furthermore, the beauty of pomegranate trees, flowers, and fruit symbolizes sanctity, abundance, and fertility. In fact, The Song of Solomon relates a bride's cheeks behind her veil to two halves of a pomegranate.
In addition, the pillars of King Solomon's temple and the robes of Jewish kings and priests featured depictions of pomegranates.
The Koran describes a heavenly paradise with gardens full of shade, springs, and fruit, namely the pomegranate. Muslims also believe that each pomegranate contains one seed that comes from paradise.
Pomegranates also play a special role as a fertility symbol in Middle Eastern weddings. The groom splits one open as he and his bride enter the door of their new home. The numerous seeds of the fruit ensure that the couples who eat them will bear many children.
Pomegranate Fun Facts
There are many interesting facts about pomegranates, but here are just a few. Whether you're convinced to buy pomegranate trees or not, you'll enjoy learning some cool facts about them.
- Pomegranates don't contain any saturated fats or cholesterol.
- In China, a picture of a ripe, open pomegranate is a popular wedding present because it represents a positive, blessed future and fertility for numerous offspring.
- Ancient civilizations used pomegranate juice as a condiment or a meat marinade, much like we use lemon juice today.
- Before granulated sugar, people used the syrup from pomegranates and other fruits as sweeteners for dessert dishes.
- The word pomegranate means "apple with many seeds."
- Pomegranates botanically belong to the berry family.
Medicinal Uses and Benefits
Throughout history, people have used the juice, rind, bark, and flowers of a pomegranate to treat a wide variety of conditions and ailments. While pomegranates aren't a definite solution for any of the following conditions, they may help lessen the symptoms and causes associated with the illness.
High Blood Pressure
Drinking pomegranate juice regularly can lower systolic blood pressure by about five mmHg. Interestingly, drinking a little bit each day might have the same effect as drinking a whole glass. However, you should take caution if you drink the juice while taking medication for high blood pressure, as it can cause your blood pressure to drop too low.
Pomegranates are heart-healthy fruits. In fact, the juice may help improve blood flow to your heart, which could prevent a heart attack or heart disease. With that in mind, you shouldn't solely rely on pomegranates as a treatment or cure for heart issues.
For many people with diabetes, drinking pomegranate juice every day improves blood sugar level stability. Furthermore, the juice may work to lower high blood sugar levels within 15 minutes of drinking it. Just a few ounces of juice could positively change blood sugar levels.
Although much of the research is still unclear, pomegranate juice may help improve kidney function. Drinking it during or after dialysis may help reduce blood pressure levels and improve healthy cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
Drinking the juice or taking pomegranate extract might help slow prostate cancer progression. It works by slowing the rise of prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels, which indicate faster growth in prostate cancer cells.
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome
Because pomegranate juice can help stabilize blood sugar levels, it can be a potential treatment for women with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS). PCOS patients often suffer from insulin resistance and hormonal imbalances, and pomegranate juice may help counteract the symptoms and balance hormone levels.
Now that you know the important role pomegranates play in human history, you probably wonder how you can incorporate them into your diet. You most likely haven't thought about pomegranates much deeper than their unique and delectable flavor, but they harbor various meanings and symbols throughout history and across many religions.
Whether you believe in the symbolism or not, pomegranates offer many health benefits when you consume them regularly. Visit Plant Me Green online for an extensive selection of pomegranates and various other fruit trees for your yard.