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Superfood Health Benefits: The Cherry – Cancer Fighting Properties

Superfood Health Benefits: The Cherry – Cancer Fighting Properties

CancerFighting

 

Cherries, along with many other berries, are a rich source of antioxidants, especially anthocyanins. They help prevent or repair the damage that is done to the body’s cells by free radicals.

Queritrin–a flavonoid–is rich in tart cherries, and has been found by researchers to be one of the most potent anticancer agents. 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.

Research has shown that a diet containing tart cherries is beneficial in reducing the risk of colon cancer. When scientists fed a diet containing tart cherries, anthocyanins, or cyanidin (a non-sugar breakdown product of anthocyanins) to mice with a genetic susceptibility to colon cancer, the animals developed significantly fewer and smaller colon tumors. This study also revealed that these compounds effectively reduced the growth of two human colon cancer cells lines.

The cancer-protective benefits of this fruit were validated in another experimental study, in which tart cherry fruit extract reduced the growth of both human colon cancer cells and human breast cancer cells in a dose-dependent fashion.

Researchers have suggested that a possible mechanism by which tart cherries may confer benefits is through shutting down the growth of cancer cells by depriving them of the proteins they need to grow.

Published Studies:

Tart cherry juice induces differential dose-dependent effects on apoptosis, but not cellular proliferation, in MCF-7 human breast cancer cells. J Med Food. 2012 Nov;15(11):945-54. doi: 10.1089/jmf.2011.0336. Epub 2012 Oct 11.

Perillyl alcohol induces c-Myc-dependent apoptosis in Bcr/Abl-transformed leukemia cells. Oncology. 2006;70(1):13-8. Epub 2006 Jan 26.

Dietary Anthocyanin-Rich Tart Cherry Extract Inhibits Intestinal Tumorigenesis in APC minus Mice Fed Suboptimal Levels of Sulindac Bobe et al. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry 2006; 54:9322-9328

Tart cherry anthocyanins inhibit tumor development in Apc minus mice and reduce proliferation of human colon cancer cells S Kang et al. Cancer Letters 2003; 194:13-19

Inhibition of cancer cell proliferation in vitro by fruit and berry extracts and correlations with antioxidant levels. Olsson ME, Gustavsson KE, Andersson S, Nilsson A, Duan RD. J Agric Food Chem. 2004 Dec 1;52(24):7264-71.

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