Tags: inflammatory | cherries

Top Anti-inflammatory Food: Cherries

Friday, 01 June 2012 01:11 PM

Tart cherries have the "highest anti-inflammatory content of any food" and can help people with osteoarthritis manage their disease, according to new research by Oregon Health & Science University scientists.
The findings, presented this week at the American College of Sports Medicine Conference in San Francisco, may offer a new treatment option to help millions of Americans reduce inflammation and discomfort from debilitating joint pain, arthritis and other conditions.
"With millions of Americans looking for ways to naturally manage pain, it's promising that tart cherries can help, without the possible side effects often associated with arthritis medications," said lead researcher Dr. Kerry Kuehl. "I'm intrigued by the potential for a real food to offer such a powerful anti-inflammatory benefit – especially for active adults."
The Oregon study involved 20 women, ages 40 to 70, with inflammatory osteoarthritis, the most common form of the disease. Researchers found that drinking tart cherry juice twice daily for three weeks led to significant reductions in inflammation, especially among those with the highest levels.
Researchers said the potent antioxidant compounds in tart cherries – called anthocyanins – are responsible for their red color and have been linked to reduced inflammation, comparable to some common pain medications.
The benefits could be particularly important for athletes, who are at a greater risk for the condition because excessive joint use that can cause a breakdown in cartilage and lead to pain and injury.
Previous research by Kuehl found athletes who drank tart cherry juice while training for a long distance run reported significantly less pain after exercise than those who didn't. Another recent study, by the Baylor Research Institute, also found that a daily dose of tart cherries extract helped reduce osteoarthritis pain by more than 20 percent for the majority of men and women.
Leslie Bonci, director of sports nutrition at the University of Pennsylvania Medical Center for Sports Medicine, said she has added tart cherries into the training menu of her professional athletes and clients.
"Why not eat red [cherries] when there's so much science to support the anti-inflammatory benefits of this super fruit?” she said. “And for athletes whose palates prefer the tart-sweet flavor profile of tart cherries, it's the optimal ingredient."

© HealthDay

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Tart cherries have the 'highest anti-inflammatory content of any food' and can help manage arthritis.
Friday, 01 June 2012 01:11 PM
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