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Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Pomegranate, Red Jewel--The Fruit Of Paradise Has A Great Medicinal Value

The pomegranate, ar-Rumman in Arabic, is mentioned thrice in the Qur'an. In Qura'anic verse quoted to the right, pomegranates are mentioned as one of the fruits in paradise. This red jewel is grown from China to California. The shiny leathery, skin of the fruit once removed reveals a myriad of cell-like juicy sacs with a "fresh, sweet-sour pleasant taste". Reference to pomegranates are found in many ancient cultures. Chinese served traditionally pomegranates at weddings, as it was associated with abundance, prosperity and numerous offsprings. Pomegranate symbolized fertility and immortality in many cultures. The botanical name of the pomegranate is Punica granatum while the name pomegranate is derived from Middle- French word pomme granete meaning seeded apple. The pomegranate is either found in small round shrub or tree form. It is usually three to six meters in height but can reach to nine meters in height. The tree has very attractive flowers that are scarlet, white or mixture of he two. One of the primary benefits of the pomegranate is its use as a dye. Extractd from its scarlet flowers is beautiful red dye which ha been used for centuries in Central Asia. The astounding color and pink-red hues of the fruit and flowers of pomegranate are an attestation to the Qura'anic verse: And whatsoever He has created on the earth of varying colors { and qualities from vegetation and fruits} and from animals. Verily! in this is a sign for the people who remember. (16:13) The pomegranate fruit is nutritious and has a caloric value of 65. Its protein and fat contents are insignificant, while it is a rich source of sodium, and also contains a good amount of riboflavin, thiamin, Vitamin C, niacin, calcium and phosphorous. The juice of pomegranate is a favorite in many Middle Eastern countries and it can also be used to make jellis, sauces, flavorants and syrups. The juice is powerful anti-oxidant that guards the body against free radicals, harmful molecules that are believed to contribute to heart disease, premature ageing and canceer. The dried pomegranate seeds found within the anils, have culinary importance in North iNdian cooking where are used as flavorant with vegetables and legumes. Pomegranate seeds are also substituted for raisins in cakes and other European sweets. Pomegranates are used medically for diarrhea, earache, bad vision, teeth and gum disorder, fevers and indifestion according to Unani Tibb (Ayuvedric) medicines. Pomegranate along with dates and olive, is also mentioned in the following verse of Qur'an, which speaks of the dues that have to be paid upon each harvest, as well as the evils of wastefullness. And it is He who produces gardens trellized and untrellized, And date-palms, and crops of different shape and taste and olives and pomegranates, similar (in kind) and different (in taste). Eat of these fruits when they ripen and pay the due thereof on the day of its harvest, And waste not by extravagance, Verily! He likes not those who waste by extravagance (6:141). Half of the medicines in the world are derived from plants, and 80 percent of the world's population relies for their primary health care on traditional remedies sorced from the plants, animals and mineral kingdom.

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