Cherries are the stuff of legends. In Western cultures, they’re associated with virtues like truth, innocence and honesty. In Japan, they’re symbols of virtue and perfection. In Chinese culture, the cherry’s red color signals joy, happiness and good luck; its roundness symbolizes perfection and eternity. Then, of course, they are linked to none other than George Washington and his quest for honesty. Who knows if any of this is true, but it makes for good reading. What is clear is that cherries—sweet or tart—are extremely popular. Bing cherries are the most common sweet variety and usually are consumed fresh during the summer. Tart cherries, such as the Montmorency variety, are almost exclusively processed for cooking or marketed as powders or juice concentrates. What’s also undeniable, though often overlooked, is that there are many cherry health benefits, and yes, WellWell identifies them. Read on.
Fresh cherries not only taste great, but they are a winning low-cal snack. A 100-gram serving, about two-thirds of a cup, has no more than 60 calories, 16 grams of carbohydrates, a couple of grams of fiber, 12 grams of sugar, no fat and one gram of protein.
Good Option For Diabetics
Cherries have a lower glycemic index of 20 than apricots, grapes, peaches or blueberries, making fresh ones a great fruit choice for anyone monitoring sugar consumption. Frozen or canned cherries are also a good choice, but it is important to make sure these options do not include a lot of added sugar.
Cuts Oxidative Stress and Inflammation
Numerous studies covering sweet, tart, fresh and canned cherries report that these fruits reduce oxidative stress and have positive anti-inflammatory effects.
Tart cherries, such as the Montmorency type, have many anthocyanins, which are polyphenols responsible for red and blue pigmentation in fruits and vegetables. It is believed that a daily two-tablespoon dose of Montmorency cherry juice can improve the ability of middle- adults to sustain attention, feeling of alertness and reduce mental fatigue.
The nutrients in tart cherry juice can significantly reduce exercise-induced muscle pain, soreness and loss of strength. It has become a go-to recovery aid for many athletes. Consume them before and after workouts.
Sweet cherries are a great way to prevent constipation, softening the contents in the intestines and lowering the risk of hemorrhoids and diverticulosis. A 100-gram serving of raw cherries has up to four grams of sorbitol, which adds water to the gut.
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