What Tart Cherries Are Good For
- July 18, 2022
Tart cherries are a natural source of melatonin, which is a hormone that regulates of the body’s internal clock and sleep-wake cycle.Foods that contain probiotics are becoming increasingly popular and people are experiencing the benefits that good bacteria has on gut health.Foods that are abundant in natural plant compounds, such as polyphenols, can also positively impact digestive health by stimulating the growth of good bacteria living in the intestinal tract.Montmorency tart cherries are rich in polyphenols, and studies suggest that incorporating these into your diet may help enhance gut health.This power drink is not only delicious, but it’s packed with the health benefits of tart cherry juice, ginger, turmeric and more!Running, biking, lifting… no matter what your fitness routine is, tart cherry juice is great for relieving muscle soreness.Studies show Montmorency tart cherry juice has the ability to reduce muscle pain and weakness after long distance running and intense strength training.Research shows that tart cherries may provide many benefits to your heart, such as lowering cholesterol and triglycerides, reducing inflammation and improving belly fat.Cardiovascular disease is the number one killer of men and women in North America, so show your heart some love and be sure to exercise and consume plenty of tart cherries!8 ounces of 100% tart cherry juice consumed daily for four weeks helped reduce inflammation associated with many chronic diseases.8 ounces of 100% tart cherry juice consumed daily for four weeks helped reduce inflammation associated with many chronic diseases Lowers risk of gout attacks.Oregon Health & Science University found that participants who drank 10.5-ounce bottles of Montmorency tart cherry juice twice daily for 21 days experienced a significant reduction in serum biomarkers of inflammation. .
Tart cherry juice is made from the fruit of the Prunus cerasus tree, native to southwest Asia and Europe, and is linked to a number of interesting health benefits.In another study, runners given 16 ounces (480 ml) of cherry juice in the days leading up to and immediately following a marathon experienced less muscle damage, soreness and inflammation.One group of men was given tart cherry supplements or a placebo in the days leading up to and immediately following an intense resistance training session.The tart cherry group lost up to 4% less muscle strength as a result of the training when compared to men given the placebo ( 10 ).Summary: Tart cherry juice intake in the days leading up to and immediately following intense physical exercise may reduce muscle strength loss and soreness.Moreover, tart cherries contain a good amount of tryptophan and anthocyanins, two compounds that may help the body create melatonin and lengthen its effects.Research shows that supplementing with tart cherry juice increases levels of melatonin and helps improve sleep quality and duration ( 14 ).In one study, tart cherry juice reduced certain blood markers of inflammation in women with osteoarthritis, the most common type of arthritis (16).In another study, patients who consumed two 8-ounce (240-ml) bottles of tart cherry juice daily experienced slightly less pain and stiffness after six weeks ( 17 ).Studies have also looked at the effect of tart cherry juice on gout, a type of arthritis accompanied by repeated attacks of swelling and intense pain.Drinking tart cherry juice seems to reduce blood levels of uric acid — a chemical that can trigger gout when present in too high concentrations (18).Tart cherries and their juice contain large amounts of antioxidants and other beneficial plant compounds that may have protective effects on brain cells ( 21 ).In one study, consuming 16 ounces (480 ml) of tart cherry juice daily improved antioxidant defenses in healthy older men and women ( 22 ).In another study, older adults with mild-to-moderate dementia consumed either 6.5 ounces (200 ml) of tart cherry juice or a placebo for 12 weeks.Summary: The high antioxidant levels in tart cherry juice may help improve brain function and reduce symptoms of mild-to-moderate dementia.For instance, one study researched the effect of this juice on upper respiratory tract symptoms commonly experienced by marathon runners after a race.A group of runners drank tart cherry juice in the days leading up to and immediately following a marathon race while another consumed a placebo.Additionally, this juice is safe for most people, though it contains high amounts of sorbitol — a type of sugar alcohol that can cause stomach pain and diarrhea for some.Individuals on medications should consult a doctor before adding large amounts of tart cherry juice to their diet. .
Is Tart Cherry Juice Good for You? Pros and Cons, Nutrition
Although additional research is needed, tart cherry juice appears to improve overall health by reducing inflammation in the body.However, the same thing that makes tart cherry juice so potent can also create complications for people with certain medical conditions.In a randomized, placebo-controlled study, tart cherry juice significantly reduced inflammation biomarkers that are common in chronic diseases. .
What Is the Difference Between Tart Cherries and Sweet Cherries
Have you ever noticed that the grocery store carries two types of cherries to pick from: tart and sweet.A University of Texas study found that when eaten regularly, the melatonin within this fruit can promote more restful, undisturbed sleep.Melatonin is also thought to be an essential compound in protecting brain health and a possible deterrent against age-related diseases such as Alzheimer’s and dementia.Bing cherries, which are large, juicy, and very sweet, have some of the best effects for lowering inflammation, making them ideal for easing the symptoms of arthritis and gout.Sweet cherries have a rich fiber content, which is crucial for maintaining a healthy digestive system.Among the many things fiber does, it wards off constipation and reduces the chance of developing digestive disorders such as Crohn’s, ulcerative colitis, and irritable bowel syndrome.In addition to keeping the immune system healthy and preventing disease, it is also a necessary vitamin for regular bodily functions.By balancing the body’s water levels, potassium helps keep muscle cramps from developing and can aid in post-workout recovery.Sweet cherries are a good source of the mineral boron, which works to balance the body’s calcium content and improve bone health.While fresh cherries won’t be back in season until the summer, you can still enjoy their flavors all year long. .
Tart Cherries Can Help You Sleep Better, Plus More Tart Cherry
Learn how one small stone fruit stands above others in terms of fighting inflammation, and the studies that have researchers and nutritionists impressed.You may have seen tart cherry juice tucked in among the coconut water and sports recovery drinks at your grocery store.The experience is somewhat reminiscent of drinking an unfiltered red wine, where there's a bold richness and some slight sediment at the bottom.Your best bet for health is to seek out 100% Montmorency tart cherry juice without added sugar ($27 for 12 bottles, Amazon) to match what was used in most of the studies."The athletes were experiencing better sleep and were themselves attributing it to the tart cherry juice," says McHugh, who has been a consultant for the New York Rangers NHL hockey team since 2000.That observation led to multiple studies showing a positive connection between regular use of tart cherry juice and longer, better rest with less insomnia."As with most 100% fruit juices, I recommend enjoying them at a meal or with a snack that contains fiber and protein to help stabilize blood glucose levels and keep you feeling satisfied," Meyer says.This possible connection was first formally studied in 1950 when, after eating a can of tart or yellow cherries a day, 12 arthritis and gout sufferers displayed lower blood levels of uric acid."Increased uric acid in the blood is what has been found to lead to very painful episodes of a gout attack," says Toby Amidor, RD, and author of The Family Immunity Cookbook ($25, Amazon).A preliminary study found that eating about 2 cups of fresh pitted cherries after an overnight fast showed a 15% reduction in uric acid levels in healthy women.Though actions like limiting sodium and eating more high-fiber foods are often nutritional recommendations for people with high blood pressure, "there are multiple studies showing reduced CRP with drinking tart cherry juice," McHugh says.In one study, men with early hypertension who consumed 2 ounces of tart cherry juice concentrate had a reduction in systolic blood pressure within 2 hours."It's probably the diversity of phytonutrients in cherries that sets it apart from other foods and fruits in terms of the beneficial recovery effects," McHugh says.If you have a training schedule that rotates the muscle groups you're working and incorporates rest days, McHugh says, there's no need to use tart cherry juice or any other intervention to accelerate recovery.In many sports leagues, athletes need to play multiple games a week involving high physical and physiological stress, plus a lot of travel with disrupted sleep.He and Amidor also point out that the consistent factor across nearly all of these studies is the benefit of tart cherry juice for inflammation improvements."The cumulative effect of eating a heart-healthy diet along with regular physical activity and weight loss (if necessary) is really what is needed to provide heart health benefits," she says.As McHugh points out, it's not just that we have strong evidence that we can benefit from tart cherry juice for arthritis, inflammation, pain relief, recovery, and sleep. .
Sweet vs. Sour Cherries: Everything You Need to Know Before You
This isn’t frozen pizza or cereal, where the aisles stretch as long as the profit margins.Most cherries sold in supermarkets are sweet cherries—and those are the ones you’ll grab, take to the beach, and eat, spitting out the pits into the sand and burying them with your feet.Sweet cherries are high in natural sugars, and can range from deep reds that are nearly black to light yellow-pinks.In the US, Washington produces the most sweet cherries, so those are often what you’ll find in supermarkets.If your kitchen is relatively temperate, you should be able to store your cherries on the counter for around three or four days, but most experts recommend keeping them in the fridge where they’ll last a bit longer.They will start to break down and get mealy in colder temperatures, so try to eat them within a week.These are our JAM around the Bon Appétit Test Kitchen because these are the cherries you want to bake with. .
Are Cherries Good for You? Health Benefits, Risks and More
Dark red cherries are filled with antioxidants, particularly anthocyanins — which experts believe have a wide range of health benefits.A handful of cherries provides powerful antioxidants and important nutrients that offer many benefits, including digestive support and possibly even help with sleep.On the other hand, 97 percent of tart cherries are processed primarily for cooking and baking, per a March 2018 study in Nutrients.When you imagine the fresh summer fruit you might enjoy at a picnic, you're thinking of sweet cherries, which are available in many varieties and colors — ranging from dark red to yellow.A diet high in fiber may also reduce your risk of colon cancer, according to an October 2015 study in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.Vitamin C supports your immune system and helps to protect you from disease, per the National Institutes of Health (NIH).The vitamin C in cherries also helps your body produce collagen, a protein needed to heal wounds, per the NIH.A complex but common form of arthritis, gout causes sudden, severe attacks of pain and swelling in one or more joints (typically the big toe), per the Mayo Clinic.Cherries have antioxidant properties and may reduce the body's inflammatory response to the urate crystals that cause gout.That said, large randomized controlled trials are needed to determine the use of cherries in the treatment of gout."It would seem that this is long overdue and may provide additional evidence as to the role cherries could play in the future management of a burdensome disease," note the authors of the review."Studies suggest that cherries are a natural source of melatonin, which helps control your body's internal clock and regulate your sleep patterns.".Your body produces melatonin naturally, and as levels of this hormone rise in the evening, it puts you in a state of quiet wakefulness that promotes sleep, per Johns Hopkins Medicine.You probably make enough melatonin for sleep on your own, but certain things can hinder its sleep-triggering signals, including staring at a screen or sitting under bright lights.This oxidative stress is created by free radicals that form when you exercise, digest food, or are exposed to environmental sources like cigarette smoke, air pollution and sunlight, per the NIH.Polyphenols — a type of antioxidant in cherries — may have a blood pressure-lowering effect and protect your cardiovascular system, according to a November 2013 study in the journal Molecules.Cherries are particularly rich in anthocyanins, per a March 2018 study in Nutrients. Anthocyanins are a type of polyphenol that's linked to lower blood pressure, reduced cancer cell growth, diabetes prevention, improved vision and a lower risk of heart disease, per an October 2015 report in the Journal of Food Processing & Technology..Much like their sweeter counterparts, sour cherries also contain anthocyanins, which are antioxidants that fight oxidative stress and are linked to a lower risk of heart disease, diabetes and cancer, per the Journal of Food Processing and Technology report.Sour cherries also have vitamin C and beta carotene, and they may even help you get some sleep, according to December 2012 research in the European Journal of Nutrition.People taking blood thinners should talk to their doctor before adding sour cherries to their diet.Dark red cherries can make a delicious addition to your regular meals, savory or sweet.You can also bake with cherries to add a fiber boost to scones, muffins or even pies and crumbles. .
5 Health Benefits of Tart Cherries
Packing not only flavor but tons of nutrients, tart Montmorency cherry juice significantly reduces high blood pressure comparable to what you can achieve with medicine, according to new research from Northumbria University in Newcastle, United Kingdom.In the study, published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers targeted 15 men who had early signs of high blood pressure and, consequently, a higher risk of suffering from heart-related problems in the future.And while it’s hard to draw much of a conclusion from a single small study, it does point to something that research has suggested for a while: Tart cherries have a bevy of health benefits.If you feel like you’re living in the body of someone 10-20 years your senior because of the pain and stiffness you suffer after long training sessions, you might benefit from supplementing your diet with tart cherry juice.In a study from Oregon Health and Science University, researchers told patients with osteoarthritis—a type of arthritis that occurs when flexible tissue at the ends of bones wears down—to drank tart cherry juice twice a day for three weeks.You may not need the ibuprofren or ice packs after a grueling run: Tart cherries may be more effective for beating muscle pain, according to a study from Oregon Health and Science University.Another study, published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, found that tart cherry juice also has a protective effect on muscles and helps reduce pain during strenuous exercise. .
The Many Benefits of Tart Cherry – Nuun Hydration
Free radicals include a wide range of factors like pollution, infection, sun exposure, alcohol, and even high blood sugar, but antioxidants act to neutralize them and keep our bodies in balance. .