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Superfood Health Benefits: The Cherry – Improves sleep quality and fights insomnia

Superfood Health Benefits: The Cherry – Improves sleep quality and fights insomnia

Research indicates that tart cherry juice may help improve the quality and duration of sleep, reduce the severity of insomnia and increase overall sleep efficiency. We all know the importance of sleep – but what you might not know is that being tired isn’t just about feeling grumpy. While a restful night can lead to a more productive day, inadequate sleep is linked to health problems like weight gain and high blood pressure. So it’s crucial to prioritise sleep.

To help them do so, many people turn to sleep aids, including melatonin pills. With tart cherries, however, they may have a natural remedy to promote sleep that also tastes good. Tart cherries are one of the few natural sources of melatonin, which is responsible for the regulation of the body’s internal clock and sleep-wake cycle. Researchers believe it’s the combination of melatonin and the anthocyanins in tart cherries that might help you sleep better at night.

A look at the evidence

  • Increases sleep time: A new study found that drinking Montmorency tart cherry juice twice a day for two weeks helped increase sleep time by nearly 90 minutes among older adults with insomnia. Read more on this study here.
  • Improves sleep quality and duration: Adults who drank two servings of Montmorency tart cherry juice concentrate each day for seven days slept about 40 minutes longer on average and had up to a 6 percent increase in sleep efficiency, compared to the participants who drank another beverage. Find more on this study here.

Published Studies:

Effect of tart cherry juice (Prunus cerasus) on melatonin levels and enhanced sleep quality. Eur J Nutr. 2012 Dec;51(8):909-16. doi: 10.1007/s00394-011-0263-7. Epub 2011 Oct 30.

Effects of a tart cherry juice beverage on the sleep of older adults with insomnia: a pilot study. J Med Food. 2010 Jun;13(3):579-83. doi: 10.1089/jmf.2009.0096.

Detection and quantification of the antioxidant melatonin in Montmorency and Balaton tart cherries (Prunus cerasus). J Agric Food Chem. 2001 Oct;49(10):4898-902.

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