Health Benefits of Cherries
Thousands of years ago near the beginning of time when our ancestors relied a lot on hunting and gathering for food, mankind thrived without the luxuries of medicines, pharmacies and therapies that we have access to today. Instead, they relied on the fruits of the earth to survive and to provide remedies for their existence. There were no synthetics, manufacturing or preserving of foods, plant extracts, meats or juice to help the body survive. They derived their own concoctions on which to live.
In today’s world, though, this has done a 360-degree change. We now have access to commercialized medicines, remedies and therapies of all varieties. However, these often offer limited outcomes and we find ourselves still looking for other remedies that will actually offer results that we are in great need of. Recently, there has become a revived increased interest in using cherries such as they did in pre-modern days. Using the fruit of a cherry seems to be a possible way of combining our natural food supply and using it to help our health heals by ways of consumption. Let’s take a look at some of these health benefits.
Nutrition chart for Sweet Cherries. Serving: 1 cup, thawed, 260 grams. Sweet cherries are rich in potassium (15%), Vitamin A (10%) and Riboflavin (7%).
Cherry increases melatonin levels
Dr. Russel Reiter, a researcher who has spent over three decades working on the effects of tart cherry and melatonin effects. There is in fact a large quantity of melatonin, a hormone that is released from the pineal gland in the body that helps produce other hormones that impact the circadian rhythms of many bodily functions. Additionally, cherries that are more abundant in production called Montmorency cherries, which may have about 14 nanograms of melatonin per gram.
This is more than what is already found in our body. Additionally, cherry juice concentrate in comparison to other fruit juices has up to ten times more melatonin in it because it is not as watered down. Melatonin, which is fat and water soluble, is more potent than vitamins A, C and E and therefore due to its solubility, it has a higher capability to enter cells that vitamins cannot. Eating cherries will increase the concentration of natural melatonin present in the body and will also increase the antioxidants that are present.
Ground Meat Plus Cherries?
Dr. Alden M. Booren, a professor of Food Science and Human Nutrition currently at Michigan State University, has researched adding tart cherries to ground meat as opposed to adding other fruit to it that also had antioxidants in efforts to prevent mutagen formation. Surprisingly, by adding tart cherries when cooking ground beef, it can reduce mutagens that were formed by as much as 90 percent. Booren found that the tart cherry is one of the most valuable resources for preventing mutagen formation.
Nutraceuticals are foods or ingredients that are used in treatments and prevention methods of treating diseases while also providing health benefits. Scientists have discovered that some types of foods actually help to combat a variety of health issues ranging from small ailments to even long term diseases.
Cherries not only have a high level of antioxidants present, even outweighing Vitamins C, E and other synthetic antioxidants, but it even has anti-inflammatory properties. Cherry growers who usually eat six times more cherries than the average person had a significant decrease in illnesses related to heart and cancer. The natural compounds called anthocyanins give cherries their red color. When extracted, it is useful in food processing. Also, when added to any other food, it can enhance our diets with these health benefits and are less costly than other supplements.
Tart Cherry Properties
A tart cherry has many compounds that when combined are very healthy. The tart cherry is, as of now, known to have a total of 17 natural compounds that contribute to a healthy diet and lifestyle when included into the diet. Some of these are as follows:
The potent antioxidant of melatonin as previously stated above additionally helps to improve natural sleep patterns and can help aid in relieving pain in sore muscles.
The compound of beta-carotene can help you get rid of a cold or flu faster and works well to prevent the common col. It also works in association with hormone production and the pituitary gland. Additionally, cherries have Vitamin A, which helps aid beta-carotene to be broken down as it enters the body.
Cherries have three flavonoids that help support heart health. These flavonoids that are present are anthocyanins, proanthocyanidins and anthocyanidins, which gives many fruits, vegetables and plants their color.
Cherries also contain superoxide dismutase (SOD compounds) which is very rare in foods. SODs are enzymes that locate and repair damaged cells in the body.
As you can see, the use of cherries in our diets have great benefits throughout our bodies and can aid in fighting off numerous illnesses and help us to maintain immunity. Eating cherries or drinking cherry extract concentrate juices are some of the best way to get these beneficial compounds into our body system.