Until recently, the scientific evidence that pomegranates are truly the superfood that we’ve all been led to believe has been unsubstantial. To add to this, some questionable marketing tactics have raised doubts as well. A team of researchers from the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL) and the life science company Amazentis decided to investigate the fruit more closely and discovered that there is a molecule within pomegranates that is transformed by microbes in the gut, allowing muscle cells to protect themselves against one of the major causes of aging.
Mitochondria are the powerhouses of cells, containing inner compartments that are no longer capable of carrying out their vital function as they age. The dysfunctional mitochondria accumulate within the cell since the cells are unable to recycle them. This affects the health of many tissues, including muscles, which become gradually weaker with time. This buildup of mitochondria is also believed to be a potential cause in other diseases of aging, such as Parkinson’s disease.