February 16, 2009
Cherries help heart, help prevent diabetes
Cherries, a super fruit, may reduce factors associated with heart disease and diabetes, a U.S. researcher suggests.
Lona Sandon, assistant professor of clinical nutrition at University Southwestern Medical Center and spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association, says the fruit's red color is a cue to its antioxidant and health benefits.
Cherries are particularly high in quercetin, a natural antihistamine and anti-inflammatory compound,Sandon says in a statement.
While apples are the top source of quercertin in the typical American diet, gram for gram, cherries pack just as much of this valuable nutrient.
Fresh cherries or apples have about 3 milligrams of quercetin per 7-ounce serving. However, processing concentrates quercetin, so there's about twice the amount of the compound in juices and other processed offerings, Sandon says.
Cherries are available year-round in dried, frozen and juice form, so they're easy to incorporate into your daily diet, Sandon says.