SCOTTISH scientists say eating pomegranates regularly may help to reduce feelings of hunger while helping you to feel fuller for longer.
• Extract in pomegranate believed to be appetite suppressant
Volunteers who took a pomegranate supplement daily for three weeks reported feeling significantly less hungry throughout the experiment than
those who had a placebo instead. They also claimed to have less desire to eat, and felt more satisfied after eating.
Pomegranate has long been hailed as a superfood for its high levels of antioxidants, which can improve blood circulation and decrease the risk of
A total of 29 volunteers took part in the study carried out by Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh.
When given a plate of food as part of the trial, those who had been taking the extract ate an average of 22 per cent less than those in the control group, but reported greater enjoyment of the food.
Half the group took a pomegranate extract, containing the skin, pith and seeds of the fruit, every day for three weeks and the rest took a placebo tablet.
After three weeks, each volunteer drank a glass of pomegranate juice before sitting down to a meal of pasta with tomato sauce.
Before eating and at 15-minute intervals for up to two hours afterwards, the participants recorded their feelings of hunger, desire to eat, fullness and satisfaction on a visual analogue scale, a questionnaire widely used in scientific studies to measure feelings and attitudes.
The pomegranate extract group felt less hungry (by an average of 12 per cent), had less desire to eat (21 per cent), felt fuller (16 per cent) and more satisfied (15 per cent).
They also ate an average of 447 grammes of pasta compared with 574 grammes for the control group, or 22 per cent less.
They also rated their food as tasting better than the other group did.
The research team now plans to do a further study to try to determine why the extract has the “satiety” effect. One theory is that
it contains polyphenols, which are thought to act as an appetite suppressant.
The research may represent an important step in combatting obesity and other weight-related health problems.
The pomegranate extract tested was PurePlus, a highly concentrated supplement which is the only one in the UK to contain the pith, peel and skin of the pomegranate.
Previous studies have shown that pomegranate juice can lower blood pressure, reduce stress and combat middle-aged spread.