By Natural News
(NaturalNews) Cherries have a deep red color which signifies its richness in polyphenol flavonoid compounds known as anthocyanin glycosides. These antioxidants have a wide range of health benefits, and tart cherries contain more of these antioxidant substances than sweet cherries. The antioxidant content in frozen cherries is slightly lower, and canned cherries have an even larger decrease in antioxidant content, but the amount of antioxidants in canned cherries is still significant.
The antioxidant levels in dried cherries and in cherry juice, both sweetened and unsweetened varieties, is similar to the levels in fresh cherries. However, fresh organic cherries are best for antioxidant amounts and overall quality. Cherries are on the Environmental Working Group’s “Dirty Dozen” list, which means that conventional cherries are one of the most contaminated fruits in terms of pesticides. The level of pesticide residues in conventional cherries is much higher, so when possible it is highly recommended that you purchase organic cherries.
Cherries improve sleep
If you have difficulty sleeping, drinking tart cherry juice may improve your overall sleep quality. Tart cherries contain high levels of phytochemicals including melatonin. As people age, their natural levels of melatonin drop. One clinical trial provided volunteers with either a placebo or a tart cherry juice concentrate for one week. The cherry juice group’s melatonin levels were significantly elevated by the end of the trial, while the placebo and baseline group had no change.
May help fight diabetes
Cherries get their deep, rich color from having a high amount of anthocyanins, which are antioxidants. In a laboratory study using animal pancreatic cells, researches observed that anthocyanins increased insulin production. This effect could help lower blood sugar levels and provide support to diabetics. Tart cherries are a low-glycemic food, which are foods that will not cause big spikes in blood sugar levels.