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Pretty Please, With a (Tart) Cherry on Top

By Donna Stark

My daughter has taken a new liking to cherries, but not the chocolate covered ones, the ones wrapped in a flaky crust, or even the sweet bites of summer goodness still on the stem. No, she is falling in love with the other popular cherry out there: the tart cherry. The ones with the bold, red color and the unique sour-sweet flavor. The ones that are typically enjoyed dried, frozen, or as she prefers, juiced. The ones that researchers can’t get, or study, enough of because their benefits to the body are slowly becoming too numerous to count. These cherries are quickly gaining the interest of everyone, including my daughter, and it’s mainly due to their health and performance benefits.

Start with the Tart

Tart cherries may not be the first thing you reach for when you wake up in the morning, but if you want to start your day off right by giving your body incredible vitamins and nutrients, you may want to consider making them part of your everyday breakfast. Here’s why.

  • For anyone - Nutritionally dense, tart cherries and their juice are loaded with carbohydrates, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, manganese and potassium. They are also very rich in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties.
  • For athletes - Your hard work and training are important, so consider this: the nutritional components of tart cherries can help improve muscle recovery, strength, and energy. They can also help to reduce muscle pain and inflammation as well.
  • For the aging - Help your memory! Tart cherries have been shown to reduce oxidative stress and inflammation in the brain, which helps protect against cognitive declines.
  • For pain sufferers - Don’t let joint pain limit your daily activities. Tart cherries are believed to help with reducing inflammation and joint pain, thereby decreasing the symptoms that many experience with arthritis and osteoarthritis.
  • For the sleepy - Improve the quality of your sleep. Tart cherries contain melatonin, a naturally occurring substance that helps the body achieve a restful night of sleep.
  • For the healthy and unhealthy - If you are healthy, you want to stay healthy, and if you aren’t, you want to achieve better health. Tart cherry juice can reduce the incidence of upper respiratory tract symptoms and significantly impacts the function of the body’s immune system.

Cherries for All

As you can see, consuming tart cherries can benefit people of all ages, and it’s easy to do so too! Tart cherries can be used in smoothies, trail mixes, and protein bars. They can also be used in the form of juice and even a powder! With the versatility that they offer, it couldn’t be any easier to add some into your diet every day. The benefits of doing so are worth it, and if all of the researchers have their way, there will be even more benefits down the road to talk about!

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Denver, Colo.

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