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Acute Effects of Pomegranate Extract on Postprandial Lipaemia, Vascular Function and Blood Pressure


We investigated whether a test drink enriched in pomegranate polyphenols, consumed with a high-fat meal, can reduce postprandial lipaemia and improve vascular function and blood pressure compared to placebo. Nineteen young, healthy men completed a randomized, controlled crossover trial. The active drink (containing a pomegranate extract) was consumed during a high-fat meal (ET-DUR) or 15 min before (ET-PRE), and the placebo drink (no pomegranate extract) was consumed during the high-fat meal (CONTROL). Postprandial lipaemia was assessed by venous plasma TAG 0–2 h, and capillary plasma TAG 0–4 h. Blood pressure and digital volume pulse, to measure reflection index (DVP-RI) and stiffness index (DVP-SI), were monitored at baseline, 2 and 4 h. There was no inhibition of postprandial lipaemia by the active drink compared to CONTROL. ET-PRE caused a greater increase in the venous plasma TAG at 2 h compared to CONTROL and ET-DUR (treatment effect P = 0.001). The incremental area under the curve 0–4 h for capillary plasma TAG was not significantly different between treatments. Systolic blood pressure (SBP) increased in the ET-PRE and ET-DUR groups to a lesser extent than the CONTROL group (treatment effect P = 0.041). There were no treatment effects for DVP-RI, DVP-SI or diastolic blood pressure. In conclusion, the consumption of a single drink containing ET-rich pomegranate extract did not decrease postprandial plasma TAG concentrations, but suppressed the postprandial increase in SBP following the high-fat meal.

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Fig. 1



Diastolic blood pressure


Diacylglycerol acyltransferase


Digital volume pulse


Reflection index measured by digital volume pulse


Stiffness index measured by digital volume pulse




Incremental area under the curve


Systolic blood pressure




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This study was funded by King’s College London. We thank Anne Catherine-Perz, David Lincoln, Mary-Jo Searle for their assistance during the study. The active and placebo drinks were kindly supplied by POM Wonderful, LLC (CA, USA). The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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Correspondence to Wendy L. Hall.

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Mathew, A.S., Capel-Williams, G.M., Berry, S.E.E. et al. Acute Effects of Pomegranate Extract on Postprandial Lipaemia, Vascular Function and Blood Pressure. Plant Foods Hum Nutr 67, 351–357 (2012).

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  • Postprandial lipaemia
  • Vascular function
  • Blood pressure
  • Polyphenols
  • Pomegranate