In addition to being beautiful and vibrant in color, cherries are also extremely healthy and good for your health. That’s why the round and reddish fruit is no longer just the decoration of the cake to be the protagonist of several scientific studies that seek to prove its benefits.
Rich in vitamins and minerals, cherry is antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, good for the heart and improves sleep. Want to learn more about this powerful food? Read on!
5 Cherry Health Benefits
Regular consumption of the fruit is capable of bringing numerous gains, thanks to its low calorie and high nutritional value . According to nutritionist Adriana Pantaleão, “cherry is rich in fructose and glucose, phenolic compounds, B complex vitamins, and vitamins A, C, E and K and some carotenoids, in particular beta-carotene”.
The nutritionist adds that, in smaller doses, it contains lutein and zeaxanthin, as well as calcium, magnesium, phosphorus and potassium. And it has a high antioxidant power, decreasing the oxidative process and preventing chronic diseases such as: diabetes, cancer and obesity and cardiovascular diseases. Check out 5 benefits of fruit:
1. High nutritional value
A cup of fresh cherries provides a good dose of protein, calcium and iron, as well as vitamins and minerals. Among the vitamins, one of the main ones is vitamin C , which strengthens the immune system and improves skin health. Cherry is also rich in fiber , which helps keep the digestive system healthy and promotes intestinal regularity. ( 1 )
2. Protect the heart
Cherry juice can help reduce blood pressure due to its high polyphenol content. In addition, the fruit helps reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke . They are also rich in polyphenol antioxidants, including anthocyanins, flavonoids and catechins, which can help keep your heart healthy by protecting against cell damage and reducing inflammation. ( 2 )
3. Speeds recovery after exercise
Over the years there has been a fair amount of research on cherries, specifically sour cherries, and the role they can play in exercise and recovery from exercise. Research highlights that, because of its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds , cherry helps relieve exercise-induced pain and inflammation. ( 3 )
4. Improves sleep
Cherries contain high concentrations of phytochemicals, including melatonin, which is directly linked to the regulation of sleep cycles. Studies show that drinking sour cherry juice helps improve sleep duration and quality . ( 4 ) However, it is still unknown whether eating the fruit before going to sleep would have the same effect.
5. Helps in gout relief
Several studies have been done in order to prove and reinforce the effectiveness of cherries in alleviating, combating and preventing gout, a type of arthritis very common among the elderly.
In one of the most relevant studies on the subject, people who consumed cherries for more than two days were a third less likely to suffer from gout attacks. Drinking cherry juice reduces the levels of uric acid in the blood (a compound named as the main cause of the problem). ( 5 )
beware of fakes
It may seem impossible to fake a fruit, but that happens with cherries. The truth is that most of those bright red cherries that you buy in syrup in supermarkets are not, in fact, cherry, but chayote .
Needless to say, this invalidates all cherry benefits. This is a common practice in the industry to lower costs, since the fruit is little produced in Brazil.
So as not to be fooled, read the labels carefully – if it says “canned cherry”, it’s best to avoid. Another way to get around the prices and seasonality of the fruit in the country is to plant it at home. So, you can make preserves, sweets, jams or even eat fresh , with total certainty of what you are eating.
How to plant cherry at home?
To have cherry whenever you want, without leaving the house, it’s worth opting for homemade planting. The cherry can be planted directly in the ground, as well as in large pots (over 60 cm in diameter). Best of all, the seedlings can be made only with the seed , making the process easier. Know how:
- Open the cherries and remove the seeds. Wash them then.
- Remove excess water with a paper towel. Wrap them in a dry sheet of paper towels and let them sit for 24 hours.
- Prepare the pot for the seedlings by placing a little gravel on the bottom to facilitate drainage. Add topsoil, place the seeds spaced apart, and cover them with approximately 2 centimeters of soil.
- Water daily, once a day, preferably in the morning, alternating periods of direct sun.
- In approximately 60 days after planting you will have your seedlings and can transfer them to the final location, where you will have your own cherry tree.
The cherry is the fruit of the cherry tree, a common and acclaimed tree mainly in Japan. Despite not being known to most of the population, there are more than a thousand varieties of cherry, divided between sweet, acidic and hybrid .
The tree is of Asian origin and, despite being highly appreciated, its cultivation is still uncommon in Brazilian lands. Thus, most of the fruits that are consumed today come from imports.
Delicate and showy, cherries are very common in jams, jams, fillings and syrups. However, consuming them natural is the best alternative in terms of health, because even though the fruit is small, it is considered a real pump of nutrients, full of vitamins and minerals.
So, how about starting to consume this delicious fruit daily and gain a series of benefits for your health? Whether in the form of juice, sweets or the fruit itself, the cherry is easy to include in the diet and your body will certainly appreciate it.