Cherries are the members of the stone fruit family. This family’s other members include peaches, apricots and nectarine. Cherries grow on high altitudes. They are grown in countries like Australia, New Zealand, Western and South Asian countries, North America and Southern Europe. There are two types of cherries – tart cherries and sweet cherries. It is believed that tart cherries have lesser sugar content in them – hence tart cherries are believed to be more beneficial in certain health conditions.
Always pick the darker variety of cherries – they contain more amounts of nutrition. Tart cherries contain good amounts of vitamins A and C, minerals like potassium, zinc, calcium, magnesium, phosphorous etc.
Tart cherries can be consumed in all forms – farm-fresh, dried, frozen or in a juice form. However, to get the maximum health benefits, try to eat fresh cherries. For those who do not have the privileged access to fresh cherries, they can opt for the other varieties that are easily available in organic stores.
In order to get the maximum benefits from tart cherries, drink a tablespoon of the fruit concentrate, twice a day, before meals. Mix this concentrate in warm water and then drink it. Else, it can mixed with any of your favourite drinks and can be had.
Tart Cherry Juice:
To make a tasty juice out of tart cherries, take a handful of fresh cherries. Deseed the cherries and cut them into small pieces. In a frying pan, put them along with a little water and sugar. You can avoid sugar if you are keen on health rather than taste.
Simmer this for a few minutes till the pulp turns soft. Switch off the stove and wait for the liquid to cool down. Mash the contents with the help of a hand-blender. Strain the liquid and consume the same, immediately.
Cherries can also be added like raisins to cakes and breads. You can add a few deseeded and cut cherries to your salad or muesli.
Remedy for gout and arthritis:
Tart cherries contain anthocyanins. Hence, they have anti-inflammatory properties which help in easing the above conditions. Research conducted on a group of gout patients suggested that regular consumption of tart cherries lowered the urea levels in the body.
Tart cherries contain melatonin, the brain-soothing anti-oxidant. Regular consumption of their juice eases all types of nervous conditions like insomnia, nervousness, nervous weakness and head aches. It is beneficial in early stages of Parkinson’s disease too.
A strong disease-fighter:
Regular consumption of fruits enhances the body’s immunity levels. The antioxidants like lutien and beta carotene found in tart cherries remove the disease-causing toxins from the body. They ensure good digestion which is, in fact, the pre-requisite for overall good health.
Also, regular consumption of tart cherries protects the body from certain types of cancer like stomach cancer and cancer in the intestines. Even patients suffering from this disease can consume the juice regularly as it stops the cancer cells from multiplying further.
The beneficials vitamins in tart cherry make it ideal in healing the body at a faster pace, when attacked by diseases.
Tart cherry juice reduces the inflammation caused due to overstraining of muscles.
Athletes and sports persons who regularly drank tart cherry juice found that they became less tired even after long work-outs and did not have muscle soreness after their training sessions.
Maintaining Ideal Weight:
Some people have this habit of over-eating during festivals and other functions. They should consume a glass of tart cherry juice also. The nutrients in the juice activate the body’s metabolism and hinder in the process of accumulation of fat deposits, by revving up the process of digestion.