By Joseph Mercola
with Sarah Potts
Everyone knows how delicious cherries can be, but did you know that they can also relieve pain, help you avoid premature aging, and add years to your life? Of course, eating cherries during winter months can be costly and challenging, but at the end of this article, you'll read about a very convenient and wise solution that gets my absolute highest endorsement.
Help Fight Cancer and Disease
Cherries, along with many other berries, are a rich source of antioxidants. They help prevent or repair the damage that is done to the body’s cells by free radicals. This means that antioxidants replace free radicals in your body before they can cause any damage.
Queritrin--a flavonoid--is rich in cherries, and has been found by researchers to be one of the most potent anticancer agents. When eating cherries, the queritrin is set free to fight off all the body’s cancerous cells.
Cherries also contain ellagic acid, a naturally occurring plant phenolic known as an anti-carcinogenic/anti-mutagenic compound. Some researchers say that ellagic acid may be the most effective way to prevent cancer.
Another compound found in cherries--perillyl alcohol (POH)--is extremely powerful in reducing the occurrence of all types of cancer. Researchers found that POH stops the growth of cancer cells by depriving them of the proteins they need to grow. It has worked on every kind of cancer that POH has been tested against.
Help Relieve Pain of Arthritis and Gout
Tart cherries contain two powerful compounds, anthocyanins and bioflavonoids. Both of these compounds slow down the enzymes Cyclo-oxyygenase-1 and -2, which help to relieve and prevent arthritis and gout in the body.
Eliminate Oxidative Stress and Prevent Premature Aging
Cherries are rich in two important flavonoids, isoqueritrin and queritrin, which act as antioxidants and work to eliminate byproducts of oxidative stress, therefore slowing down the aging process.
Help Cure Migraines
By helping reduce inflammation in the body, the anthocyanin and bioflavonoids in cherries also help eliminate migraine headaches. These compounds are known to have similar activity to aspirin and ibuprofen.
Improve Body’s Circadian Rhythms
Extensive evidence points out that the antioxidant melatonin, which is also rich in cherries, is significant in improving the body’s circadian rhythms. Since melatonin is found in small quantities in the body, a slight increase can produce great results.
Help You Sleep
Melatonin is also found to help the body’s natural sleep patterns. Since the body so rapidly absorbs melatonin, cherries can increase melatonin levels in the blood, therefore improving the way you sleep.
How to Get All the Powerful Benefits of Cherries... Right Now
A handful of fresh cherries in the summertime are a natural gourmet delight, but if you want to harness the antioxidant power of cherries on a routine basis--and you definitely should, as they are one of nature’s true "healing foods"--then you should seriously consider red tart cherry juice concentrate.
Along with blueberry concentrate and pomegranate concentrate, cherry juice concentrate is a super-nutritious, all-natural, and absolutely delicious daily addition to your diet. As part of my personal program to prevent disease and avoid premature aging, I drink these concentrates every day.
But take note that I don't recommend eating cherries excessively, as doing so will give you too much sugar. Instead, opt for a high-quality concentrate, so you are getting the health benefit of the cherries without all the sugar.
While most people simply mix the concentrates with water and drink it every morning for all the health benefits along with the incredible taste, some enjoy mixing it with milk (I recommend raw milk, of course). As it is a concentrate, it is incredibly versatile as a healthy ingredient in many recipes as well. For instance, if you are into juicing, the cherry concentrate is an exceptional addition to a wide range of recipes.
Finally, many people enjoy the taste and health benefits of mixing the cherry juice concentrate with the blueberry concentrate or pomegranate concentrate, so I encourage you to find out the incredible health benefits of both of those as well.