Cherries: The New Antioxidant “Super Fruit”
Cherries are not only good for you, but they’re also on trend as a homegrown “Super Fruit.” Emerging evidence links cherries to many important health benefits – from helping to ease the pain of arthritis and gout, to reducing risk factors for heart disease, diabetes and certain cancers.
Cherries contain beta carotene, vitamin C, iron, magnesium, fiber, and potassium, along with a very high concentration of antioxidants. Cherries also contain melatonin, which has been found to help regulate the body’s natural sleep patterns, aid with jet lag, prevent memory loss and delay the aging process.
One of the more important health benefits of cherries is seen in the emerging research that shows cherries can help prevent some cancers. This is because of the antioxidants found in cherries; these are made up of anthocyanins and quercetin, which are flavonoids, and the phenolic acid amygdalin. Cherries have also been shown to reduce pain and inflammation from rheumatoid arthritis and gout.
The health benefits of cherries can be gleaned from eating fresh, frozen, dried or canned cherries. They can also be made into a juice. Cherries will stay fresh for about a week in the refrigerator and up to a year in the freezer.