Show that cherries can help alleviate joint pain & inflammation
In a placebo-controlled double-blind clinical trial titled 'Efficacy of Tart Cherry Juice in Reducing Muscle Pain During Running: A Randomized Controlled Trial' published in 2010 in the" Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition," 54 marathon runners were given tart cherry juice to drink twice a day for seven days before the event, and then on race day. Researchers Kuehl et al, found that tart cherry juice mediated the secondary inflammatory response significantly reducing post-exercise muscle pain.
In a subsequent study published in 2010 in the "Scandinavian Journal of Medicine in Science and Sports," titled 'Influence of Tart Cherry Juice on Indices of Recovery Following Marathon Running' Researchers G. Howatson et al, found that tart cherries provided faster recovery of isometric strength, caused increased antioxidant capability and reduced levels of markers of inflammation such as interleukin-6, C-reactive protein and uric acid.
This led the researchers to conclude that tart cherry juice is a feasible means of aiding your recovery following strenuous exercise or combating joint pain and inflammation experienced by such conditions as Arthritis or Gout.
Cherry extract may help improve sleep:
A study conducted by Pigeon et al, published in the "Journal of Medicinal Food" in June 2010 titled 'Effects of a Tart Cherry Juice Beverage on the Sleep of Older Adults with Insomnia: A Pilot Study' looked at the sleep habits of 15 older adults as they drank 8 oz. of tart cherry juice for two weeks, in the morning and again in the evening. Then they were given a similar drink that did not contain cherry juice for an additional two weeks. Results showed that while the subjects were drinking the cherry juice, they reported a substantial decrease in episodes and severity of insomnia.The volunteers didn't experience the same effects while on the placebo juice. "Researchers found that Montmorency cherry juice – a variety of sour cherry – significantly increases the body's level of melatonin, a powerful antioxidant that is critical in regulating sleep" Daily Mail 2011.
These results were reproduced in a similar way in research but by using seven different cherry types from the Jerte Valley of Spain, in a study published in September of 2010 in the "Journals of Gerontology" titled 'Jerte Valley Cherry-Enriched Diets Improve Nocturnal Rest and Increase 6-Sulfatoxymelatonin and Total Antioxidant Capacity in the Urine of Middle-Aged and Elderly Humans.'
Researchers found beneficial effects on actual sleep time, total nocturnal activity, assumed sleep, and immobility. Also, there were significant increases in 6-sulfatoxymelatonin levels and total antioxidant capacity in urine after the intake of each cultivar. These findings suggested that the intake of Jerte Valley cherries exerted a positive effect on sleep and may be seen as a potential nutraceutical tool to counteract oxidation.'It would definitely be beneficial to people with jet lag or coming off shift work – anywhere your internal clock has been fighting the external world' Daily Mail 2011.