Ancient traders in Central Asia and the Middle East referred to the pomegranate as the “fruit of paradise.” Arabian caravans carried the fruit with other trade goods and spices, as well as the water and food they transported to provision the travelers. The pomegranate’s leathery-skin provided a long storage life and replacement for water. Containing up to 80 percent water, the fruit supplied liquid and minerals – sodium, potassium, calcium, iron and phosphorus that travelers lost to sweat in the hot deserts they crossed. After the caravans passed, you would generally find pomegranates growing in the settlements the traders had visited.