Arthritis and Cherries
Arthritis and Cherries
In recent years, the improved understanding of the relationship between nutrition and disease has helped shed light on arthritis and cherries as two interconnected halves of the same problem. In years past, we’ve only considered food as something to nourish our bodies and disease as something to treat with medications. Today, medical science has helped foster the idea that food and disease are connected and that one can significantly impact the other.
Because of a number of studies on the health benefits of cherries, many believe that cherries can be an alternate an option for managing arthritis. The reason for this is in the fact that cherries contain high concentrations of antioxidants which can be effective at neutralizing the underlying cause for some types of arthritis. Uric acid, for example, which is at the heart of gout – a very painful type of arthritis – can be neutralized by the bioflavonoids and anthocyanins in cherries. By regularly eating cherries or consuming cherry health products, one can drastically lower the amount of uric acid in the blood leading to a reduction in the frequency and severity of gout attacks. Combine this with a healthy diet free from uric acid precursors and a gout patient can actually feel a significantly level of improvement over a relatively short period of time.
It is also important to recognize that cherries are available in a variety of forms so one can have some diversity in how cherries are consumed on a daily basis.
•Fresh cherries. These are best for consumption as a regular snack. However, one should carefully note that only sweet cherries fit the bill as a fruit snack. Tart cherries offer a more sour taste that may not appeal to the taste buds of many others. If you are planning to include fresh cherries in your diet to reinforce the arthritis and cherries connection, half a cup of cherries in the morning and another half a cup in the afternoon can go a long way into improving your condition.
•Tart cherries. These are best used as a cooking ingredient. Owing to the sourness of tart cherries, these are often used as an ingredient in pies and other desserts which are compatible with cherries.
•Cherry juice and cherry concentrate. Cherry juice can be drunk straight from the bottle without need for any more dilution although the additional ingredients and preservatives that may have been added during the manufacturing process can be a cause for concern for some. For example, the addition of sugars to make the cherry juice more likeable will also increase its calorie content and this is worrisome from a weight-gain perspective. In this case, cherry concentrate is more acceptable. Cherry concentrate is made straight from cherries with no additional preservatives so you get all the goodness of cherries in pure liquid form.
•Dried cherries. Another complication in the arthritis and cherries relationship is that cherries aren’t available fresh the whole year round while gout and other forms of arthritis do not rest. The solution is dried cherries. One can easily order dried cherries online or from a local supermarket and these have a much longer shelf life making them available for longer periods throughout the year.
•Cherry pills. When you don’t have access to any other form of cherry health products mentioned above, cherry pills are welcome substitutes. Cherry pills are made from real cherries with minimal additional ingredients. It helps to check the reviews on certain brands to be sure about which cherry pills to buy at a local store near you.
Do not underestimate the connection between arthritis and cherries. Instead of thinking about medication, think about good nutrition instead. Cherries will show you that eating well and eating the right kinds of foods can go a long way into preventing the onset or recurrence of certain illnesses. You only need to try and move out of your comfort zone so you can be more at-home with using cherries as an additional remedy for your bouts with arthritis.