There are many health benefits of juiced cherries. If you are looking for a way to improve your health or replace traditional sugary drinks this is a great start. From the antioxidants to antiinflammatory qualities juiced cherries make an excellent drink choice.
While there are many varieties within the botanical genus of Prunus, the sweet cherry is commonly Prunus avium and the sour cherry is Prunus cerasus. Prunus belongs to the Rosaceae (rose) family. The English word “cherry” is derived from the Latin cerasum, named after the area in Turkey from where they were first exported to Europe. The indigenous sweet and sour cherries have been grown since prehistoric times throughout Europe, western Asia, and parts of North Africa. Recommended Read: 15 Rainier Cherry Health Benefits
Nutritional Value of Juiced Cherries
Juiced cherries are a nutritionally dense food rich in anthocyanins, flavonoids, hydroxycinnamates, potassium, vitamin C, carotenoids, and melatonin.
- Juiced cherries contain a range of bioactive food components such as anti-inflammatory polyphenols and antioxidants including anthocyanidins.
- Sour cherries contain a slightly higher content of vitamins C and A.
- Cherries have a low glycaemic index (22) so are useful for blood sugar management.
Healing Effects of Juiced Cherries
As in the past, Juiced cherries are a medicinal food for today with their high antioxidant activity, low glycaemic response, and anti-inflammatory actions. These activities reduce the incidence of many modern-day chronic illnesses, including diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. See just why anti-inflammatory foods are so important.
The phenolic content of juiced cherries assists in the protection of neuronal cells involved in neurological function, reducing oxidative stress and age-related deficits in neuronal and behavioral function. These properties help with clear skin and reducing the effects of aging. Do You Know The Close Connection Of Your Diet And Healthy Skin?
A study conducted in Australia showed that older adults with mild to moderate dementia who drank cherry juice daily for 12 weeks showed improvements in verbal fluency and short- and long-term memory, along with a significant reduction in systolic blood pressure and a smaller drop in diastolic blood pressure.
2. Cardiovascular disease
Quercetin (a flavonoid compound found in cherries) is a powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant, with research showing its protective activity in many chronic illnesses, including cardiovascular disease (CVD). It has a vasorelaxant effect, inhibits the inflammatory COX-2 pathway, and reduces platelet aggregation (stickiness). 31 Fast and Effective At Home Cardio Exercises
Drinking juiced cherries reduces the incidence of irregular and rapid heartbeats, decreases vascular inflammation, and has antioxidant effects, thereby reducing the precursors of atherosclerosis.
Melatonin (higher in sour cherries) is a hormone produced by the pineal gland that promotes healthy sleep patterns, normalizing circadian rhythms (and reducing jet lag). When given Juiced cherries, the participants in one research study experienced an improvement in both sleep duration and sleep quality. This led to an improvement in cardiometabolic health, possibly due to melatonin’s activity in reducing inflammation and oxidation.
Cherries provide a good dose of the cancer-protective antioxidants lutein, carotenes, and anthocyanidins. These potent antioxidants generate apoptosis and cell cycle arrest in cancer, demonstrated in both cell lines (cultures from a single cell) and rat studies.
The antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activity of cherries (together with the low GI) has been shown to reduce insulin resistance and glucose intolerance. Studies showed reduced triglyceride synthesis and an improvement in overall cholesterol levels. Tart cherries regulated genes involved in fat and glucose metabolism and helped with weight loss.
Chronic low-grade inflammation may be a risk factor for a wide range of chronic illnesses, including cancer, CVD, obesity, arthritis, and cognitive dysfunction. Cherries have demonstrated an ability to modify the inflammatory processes in humans. They inhibit both the COX-1 (by 28 percent) and the COX-2 (by 47 percent) inflammatory pathways. One study showed these anti-inflammatory effects to be stronger than those from green tea. They were also shown to have a stronger anti-inflammatory effect than the pharmaceuticals aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen. Recommended Read: The Ultimate Guide to Natural Pain Management
Human studies on arthritis have shown a reduction in the anti-inflammatory marker hsCRP (high sensitivity C-reactive protein) levels by up to 25 percent when consuming 2.5 cups of sweet cherries per day for four weeks, thus reducing pain levels. A study done by the Osteoarthritis Research Society International showed that drinking two glasses of tart cherry juice per day gave significant pain relief. Recommended Read: The Right Foods and Supplements for Arthritis
Gout is a form of arthritis with high levels of uric acid in the blood causing crystal deposition in the tissues and joints. In healthy people, juiced cherries were shown to reduce uric acid levels five hours after eating. In those diagnosed with recurrent gout attacks, cherry intake over a two-day period reduced the incidence of attacks by 35 percent. When juiced cherries intake was combined with the use of allopurinol, the risk of attacks was 75 percent lower.