Cherries are a delicious and versatile fruit than can be used in sweet and savory dishes. They’re also packed with good-for-you benefits. Here are seven great reasons to eat more of them (via HealthDiaries.com):
- They are anti-inflammatory. Cherries have been proven to be one of nature’s most powerful anti-inflammatories due to the anthocyanins in cherries that researchers have found prevent free radical damage. Anti-inflammatory foods have a host of health benefits, including the ability to reduce cholesterol and blood pressure.
- They ease arthritis pain. Cherries’ anti-inflammatory properties can also help reduce pain from osteoarthritis. The Arthritis Foundation recommends drinking tart cherry juice mixed with water three times a day to ease arthritis pain.
- They prevent heart disease. A study at the University of Michigan found that a diet rich in cherries lowers all the overall risk factors for heart disease, including inflammation, body fat percentage and cholesterol levels.
- They fight cancer. Researchers have found sweet cherries to be cancer fighters thanks to a high level of an antioxidant called cyanidin. Cyanidin is an important free radical scavenger and may also promote cellular differentiation, a key process in the body’s fight against cancerous cells.
- They improve your memory. Anthocyanin is also good for the brain and has been shown to improve memory.
- They’re rich in beta carotene. Cherries are high in beta carotene, containing 19 times more than blueberries or strawberries. Beta carotene boosts your immune system and can protect against, colds, flu, infections, toxins and even cancer formations.
- They help you sleep better. Cherries contain melatonin, a hormone that regulates the body’s sleep cycles.