ATTRIBUTES: Ruby-red pomegranate seeds, called arils, are loaded with antioxidants and fiber, and are a good source of vitamins A, C and E.
SUPER POWERS: Pomegranate, or various extracts or concentrated juices created from the fruit, have been implicated in reducing inflammation in people with arthritis and diabetes, and may have beneficial effects on cardiovascular health. A study published in July showed a substance derived from pomegranates, called urolithin A, increased running endurance by 42 percent in "aged mice." A human clinical trial is underway.
WEAKNESSES: Virtually any promising study you'll read on pomegranates contains the caveat "more research is needed." Many studies have been done on mice; whether the results will translate to humans is still up in the air.
HOW TO USE IT: Pomegranate arils add drama to a salad, while a glass of pomegranate juice counts as a full serving of fruit. Create a sorbet by combining pomegranate juice with sugar-syrup to taste, and freezing it in an ice cream maker. To separate arils from pith without making a mess, cut pomegranate into the chunks, submerge chunks in a bowl of water and loosen the arils, which will sink to the bottom.