Calling all chocolate lovers! We have the perfect Valentine’s dessert for you and it just so happens to be healthy, decadent and loaded with antioxidants. Finally, a Valentine treat we can actually feel good about.
Inspired by our editor, I created this beautiful bark last week in preparation for Valentine’s Day. Just because we operate a health and diet website doesn’t mean we don’t crave chocolate once in a while (or every day).
The entire time I was prepping the ingredients I couldn’t wait to take a sample bite of the finished product. The luscious dark chocolate, the salty pistachios and the sweet, crisp pomegranates were sure to be a stellar flavor combination. Sure enough, my suspicions were right. (more…)
These days, things for Pom Wonderful are anything but. Last week, federal regulators upheld a ruling that states the popular juice company has engaged in deceptive and misleading marketing practices. The Federal Trade Commission’s decision is the culmination of a multi-year action against the California-based pomegranate juice maker.
In September, 2010, the FTC accused POM of making false and unsubstantiated claims for 36 of their products, saying they could “treat, prevent, or reduce the risk of heart disease, prostate cancer and erectile dysfunction.” The commission said the company had a “lack of sufficiently reliable evidence” to back up those claims.
The number of POM products the FTC is citing was bumped up to 36 from the 19 instances found by FTC Chief Administrative Law Judge D. Michael Chappell in May 2012. (more…)
I’ll be honest. The first time I cracked open a pomegranate and took a bite of raw seeds was last week. In all my 26 years of foodie adventures I had never tried a pomegranate. Can you believe that? I’d always known pomegranates were extremely healthy for you but I’d just been intimidated by their large round shell and fleshy innards. But upon finding out how easy they are to crack into and the abundant health benefits they provide, I knew I had to purchase them more often. Here are just a few reasons you should consider doing the same.
Health benefits: Pomegranate seeds and juice are loaded with vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C and B5, potassium, fiber and various kinds of polyphenols. In addition, pomegranates can also help lower cholesterol and blood pressure, prevent both circulatory and dental plaque, help ward off some types of cancers, slow Alzheimer’s, and even reduce joint inflammation. Also, pomegranate oil – which you can find in most health food stores – is extremely beneficial for healthy hair, nails and cuticles. They’re also an excellent source of iron and folic acid.
Nutritional statistics: One pomegranate 4 inches in diameter contains approximately 235 calories, 3 grams fat, 53 grams carbohydrates, 11 grams fiber, 39 grams sugar and 5 grams protein. (more…)
We have another case of false advertising on our hands, but this time it’s in the juice.
A recent article from CBS reported that POM Wonderful – maker of the popular 100% pomegranate juice – has been found guilty of deceptively advertising its pomegranate products when they claimed they were capable of treating, preventing, or reducing the risk of heart disease, prostate cancer and even erectile dysfunction.
The Federal Trade Commission’s main complaint with the company was that their claims were not well-founded or scientifically proven, yet they were presented to the public as such. The FTC feared consumers would be misled by their advertisements, which appeared in national publications both in print and online.
POM Wonderful’s parent company, POM, also found itself in a similar situation in 2010 after the FTC caught wind that the company was making lofty claims about their products saying they were “The Antioxidant Superpower,” and that they helped prevent heart disease. (more…)
March might be almost over, but it isn’t too late to note that it is Colorectal Cancer Awareness month. More than 50,000 people – one every 9.3 minutes – die from colon cancer each year, despite the fact that it’s the most treatable cancer when detected early through proper screening. Olympus, the Colon Cancer Alliance and Colorectal Cancer Coalition, is encouraging all Americans to help beat colon cancer by learning more and committing to be screened for the disease.
The National Cancer Institute estimates that 35 percent of cancer deaths may be linked to dietary factors. In honor of Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month, check out some new colon cancer fighting food facts below and start to incorporate some of these healthy foods into your own diet.
Remember a few years ago when pomegranate juice was all the rage? Well, it seems as though there may be a new super-food fruit juice in town: tart cherry juice.
Makers of tart cherry juice claim that the drink can do everything from help with wrinkles, insomnia, headaches, swelling, puffiness around the eyes and — most importantly for exercisers — increase muscle recovery time. Manufacturers say that tart cherry juice is high in the antioxidant vitamin E, along with melatonin, vitamin A and beta carotene.
While there hasn’t been that much independent research on the juice, one study published in the online version of the British Journal of Sports Medicine evaluated whether or not a highly-concentrated, specially-processed tart cherry juice blend could prevent the symptoms of muscle damage in a 14 male college students. The study participants were asked to either drink a bottle of the cherry juice blend twice a day for three days before exercise and for four days afterwards, or to drink a placebo juice containing no cherries. The 12-ounce bottle of juice contained the liquid equivalent of 50 to 60 tart cherries blended with commercially available apple juice (from all the cherry juice blends on the market, this is a pretty typical blend, I’ve found).
The human body is made up of over 100 trillion cells, and every hour at least one billion need to be replaced. Most cells are replaced because they are damaged by free radicals, which are atoms that have lost an electron due to metabolism, the immune system, which neutralizes viruses or bacteria, and environmental factors, such as: polution, radiation, smoke, or herbicides.
These free radicals attack normal cells just like the game “Pacman”. Free radicals search out an extra electron, thus damaging the perfectly healthy cells. This where antioxidants come into play. Antioxidants neutralize free radicals by donating an electron, which ends the electron “stealing” reaction. They act as scavengers by helping prevent cell and tissue damage that could lead to possible disease. Antioxidants are stable in either form (with or without electron), so they do not transform into free radicals. They are like your own little cell protectors. (more…)
With the coming of winter, we’re faced with exciting and exotic produce to enjoy. Among the many to choose from is the pomegranate.
Although its health benefits are impressive, USA Today and the Federal Trade Commission remind us that pomegranate isn’t a cure-all. Consuming pomegranates will give you tons of great health benefits, but it certainly won’t provide any miracle cures.
Pomegranate seeds and juice provide ample amounts of:
UPDATE [9/28/10]: In response to the FTC’s charges, POM as issued a statement that they feel the allegations are “unwarranted” and that the health benefits of pomegranate juice are “backed by $25 million in medical research.” The juice producer goes even further by stating that the FTC “is wasting taxpayer resources to persecute the pomegranate.”
Yet another popular drink manufacturer must face government regulators over exaggerated health claims. While the Food and Drug Administration has called out several food and beverage producers, this time the Federal Trade Commission is stepping onto the field. The FTC is suing POM Wonderful LLC of Los Angeles over their claims about the wonders of pomegranate juice.
The commission is targeting POM Wonderful 100% Juice and POMx dietary supplements. They say that ads for these items make “false and unsubstantiated claims that their products will prevent or treat heart disease, prostate cancer, and erectile dysfunction.”
As a chef’s wife, I am constantly having to raise the bar on nightly dinners. Not that chefs are hard to please; quite the contrary. A little known secret about fancy-schmancy chefs is that because they spend their day cooking gourmet food, when they come home, really, all they want is a sandwich and a cold beer.
However, I’m competitive, and I like showing off in the kitchen. So imagine my surprise when looking for recipes using pomegranates (which are in season right now and are gorgeous, not to mention full of anti-oxidants), I found a fantastic recipe on Weight Watcher’s website! Using POM pomegranate juice, which I love; fresh beets, which I always want to get but am flummoxed by what to do with them; and citrus (on sale right now-Yes!), this side dish is only 5 points, and extremely satisfying. In fact, I found very little variance from how a chef would prepare this dish, and the recipe, other than that a chef would probably add Extra Virgin Olive oil and some crumbled goat or feta cheese at the finish, for a mediterranean flavor.
Don’t worry about the quality of the port wine that you use in the recipe, just get the least expensive. But do get the Ruby port, and not the Tawny. “Tawny” refers to the winemaking method whereby the port is aged in wood, so when the wine reduces (cooks down) in the recipe, you could be left with some bitter flavors. “Ruby” is always what you want to look for when buying port wine for cooking. And note that cooking wine eliminates the alcohol, which reduces the calories!
I’m off to go have fun in the kitchen! Catch up with you later……
Check out more healthy Weight Watchers recipes here.