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The pomegranate compound is transformed by gut microbes into a molecule called urolithin A which causes cells to clear away damaged mitochondria and recycle their defective components for energy.
If you want to get the maximum benefit out of eating pomegranates, have some of the bitter white pith as well. It’s contrentration of polyphenols, particularly ellagatannins which are partially metabolized to urolithin A by gut bacteria, is one order of magnitude above that found in the fruit flesh and seeds. The slightly bitter taste as well as most of the polyphenols found in pomegranate juice are actually leached out from the pith during the pressing of the fruits. Hence this waste material has now become a ressource for the extraction of ellagatannins for the supplement and food industries.