Drinking Pomegranate Juice During Pregnancy May Help In Babies' Brain Development; Says Study

Pomegranate juice contains disease-fighting antioxidants - polyphenols that are neuroprotective in nature

Edited by Neha Grover (with inputs from IANS)  |  Updated: August 23, 2019 17:34 IST

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Drinking Pomegranate Juice During Pregnancy May Help In Babies' Brain Development; Says Study

Pomegranate juice for brain development

There's nothing better than gulping a glass of fresh fruit juice to quench your thirst. Fruit juice is sweet, delicious and needless to say, extremely nutritious – any day better than aerated or carbonated drinks. There are many fruits that can be juiced and pomegranate is probably the most common fruit to be converted into a liquid form for consumption. First, it is difficult to deseed it and then it is equally difficult to eat all those small red pomegranate pearls. So, juicing it is the easier to consume it. Of course, the mix of tart and sweet taste of pomegranate is loved by all; and if we talk about its health benefits, they are also plenty.

We all know that pomegranate brings a world of wellness qualities to us. It is great for overall bodily functions and also for skin and hair health. One reason pomegranate juice is particularly famed for, is its ability to improve brain function. Pomegranate juice is full of potent antioxidants that keep free radicals from damaging the brain cells. That's why it is recommended to be made an integral part of our diet, including pregnant women.

A new study published in the journal PLOS One has claimed that drinking pomegranate juice during pregnancy may improve brain development and connectivity in unborn babies. Pomegranate juice contains disease-fighting antioxidants - polyphenols that are neuroprotective in nature. Polyphenols like tannic acid and ellagitannins are known to cross the blood-brain barrier and are found in many foods and beverages, including nuts, berries, red wine and teas.

(Also Read: 8 Pomegranate Juice Benefits)

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Pomegranate juice during pregnancy is excellent for babies' brain health

Senior author of the study, Terrie Inder from Brigham and Women's hospital in the US said, "Our study provides preliminary evidence suggesting potential protective effects for newborns exposed to pomegranate juice while in the womb. These findings warrant continued investigation into the potential neuroprotective effects of polyphenols in at-risk newborns, such as those with hypoxic-ischemic injury.”

(Also Read: 10 Foods You Should Strictly Avoid During Pregnancy)

The researchers conducted a randomised, controlled study and roped in 78 expectant mothers with intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) diagnosed at 24-43 weeks' gestation. IUGR is a condition where a baby in the womb measures small for its gestational age and is not able to receive enough oxygen and nutrients. The mothers were fed eight ounces of pomegranate juice daily and the team studied its effects on the unborn babies' brain development.

"These measures tell us about how the brain is developing functionally. We saw no difference in brain growth and baby growth, but we did see improvement in cabling network and brain development measured by synchronous blood flow and visual development of the brain," Inder concluded.



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