While they seem to be in abundance especially during the summer, cherries are actually difficult to grow since they have a short shelf life and are vulnerable to certain diseases. However, whether they are frozen, dried, or converted into powder, you can enjoy their health benefits all year round.
Cherries, especially tart ones (sour cherries), are known for the following:
The study on the role of tart cherries against obesity is fairly new, and therefore, more research has to be conducted. However, in a research performed by a team from University of Michigan in 2007, cherries can reduce belly fat by 17% within 3 months, even if they are consumed in only small quantities.
Gout is a form of inflammation that occurs when crystalline deposits from high uric acid are lodged in between the joints. This then causes inflammation, tenderness, soreness, and sometimes moderate to excruciating pain.
A study shows that eating a half cup of cherries a day can already decrease the risk of gout by more than 33%. It increases to 50% if you consume these fruits at least 3 times within 2 days.
Many studies point out to the effectiveness of cherries in improving quality of sleep and preventing sleep-related disorders such as insomnia.
A study conducted by G. Howatson, PG Bell, B. Middleton, and J. Ellis show that consuming Tart Montmorency cherries can increase the production of melatonin, a hormone that is responsible not only for creating the dark pigment of the skin but also for relaxing the brain especially at night.
In their random research participated by 20 volunteers, some of them received a placebo while the others consumed tart cherry juice concentrate for a period of 1 week. They then measured the quality of their sleep and obtained urine samples , which are then used to measure their melatonin. Those who received the concentrate experienced a significant elevation of melatonin.
In another research funded by the Cherry Marketing Institute and published in Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) journal, eating tart cherries boosts the sleeping time of older adults (those who are at least 68 years old).
If you crave for something sweet but are diabetic, you may consider eating cherries, which have a glycemic index of only 22.