WASHINGTON D.C., April 12, 2011 – Tart cherries have a unique combination of powerful antioxidants that may help reduce risk factors for heart disease, according to new research presented at the Experimental Biology annual meeting in Washington, DC.
In a series of three studies, researchers from University of Michigan, University of Arizona and Brunswick labs studied the antioxidant levels and anti-inflammatory benefits of tart cherries. They found:
The Power of Eating RED
This is the latest in a growing body of science linking cherries to protection against heart disease and inflammation. Previous research from the University of Michigan revealed that cherry-enriched diets in animals lowered multiple risk factors for heart disease, from lowering total blood cholesterol levels to reducing total body weight and fat, in particular the "belly fat" that is most often associated with heart disease risk .4,5 The University of Michigan researchers, using a "whole food" approach, also found the cherry-enriched diets reduced not only overall body inflammation, but inflammation at key sites (belly fat, heart) known to affect heart disease risk in obese, at-risk rats.6
Researchers attribute the benefits to anti-inflammatory, antioxidant compounds in the red fruit called anthocyanins, also responsible for cherries' bright red color. In addition to heart heath benefits, research also suggests cherries could affect inflammation related to muscle recovery post-workout and arthritis.
Available year-round in dried, juice and frozen form, it's easy to incorporate the RED power of cherries into the daily diet to manage inflammation– from topping dried cherries in oatmeal to making a heart-smart smoothie with cherry juice and lowfat yogurt.
The research was funded by the Cherry Marketing Institute, which provided an unrestricted grant to the institutions to conduct the research and was not directly involved in the design, conduct or analysis of the projects. For more information on the heart health benefits and antioxidant profile of tart cherries, visit www.choosecherries.com.
The Cherry Marketing Institute (CMI) is an organization funded by North American tart cherry growers and processors. CMI's mission is to increase the demand for tart cherries through promotion, market expansion, product development and research. For more information on the science supporting the unique health benefits of cherries and for cherry recipes and menu ideas, visit www.choosecherries.com.
1 Martin KR, Bopp J, Burrell L, Hook G. The effect of 100% tart cherry juice on serum uric acid levels, biomarkers of inflammation and cardiovascular disease risk factors. FASEB Journal. 2011.
2 Seymour EM, Kondoleon MG, Huang MG, Kirakosyan A, Kaufman PB, Bolling SF. FASEB Journal. 2011.
3 Seymour EM, Ou B. Phytochemical and diverse antioxidant profile of whole tart cherries (Prunus Cerasus). FASEB Journal. 2011.
4Seymour EM, Singer AAM, Bennink MR, Bolling SF. Cherry-enriched diets reduce metabolic syndrome and oxidative stress in lean Dahl-SS rats. Experimental Biology 2007 225.8, Presented in minisymposium 225, Dietary Bioactive Compounds: Chronic Disease Risk Reduction.
5Seymour EM, Lewis A, Kirakosyan A, Bolling S. The Effect of Tart Cherry-Enriched Diets on Abdominal Fat Gene Expression in Rats. American Dietetic Association FNCE 2008.
6Seymour EM, Urcuyo-Llanes D, Bolling SF, Bennink MR. Tart cherry intake reduces plasma and tissue inflammation in obesity-prone rats. FASEB Journal. 2010; 24:335.1.
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