Black cherry juice is a type of juice typically used to treat health conditions like gout and arthritis. Extracted from the Prunus serotina plant, black cherry juice is rich in antioxidants, including anthocyanins.
Uses for Black Cherry Juice
Although black cherry juice is most widely used in treatment of gout and arthritis (including osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis), some proponents claim that black cherry juice can also fight exercise-induced muscle damage.
Black cherry juice is purported to reduce inflammation, a biological process closely linked to arthritis and gout. Indeed, anthocyanins have been found to block two enzymes (COX-1 and COX-2) involved in the production of inflammatory compounds known as prostaglandins.
Related: 3 Natural Remedies for Gout.
Benefits of Black Cherry Juice
There is currently a lack of research on the health effects of consuming black cherry juice. However, a number of studies suggest that anthocyanins (one of the key antioxidants found in black cherry juice) may offer certain health benefits.
For instance, a 2011 study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that dietary intake of anthocyanins may help prevent high blood pressure. And in a 2006 report published in Free Radical Research, scientists state that anthocyanins "may play an important role in health promotion in terms of obesity prevention, cardiovascular health, anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer effects."
In addition, there's some evidence that increasing antioxidant intake in general may help protect against the development and progression of both osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. However, scientists have yet to explore the use of black cherry juice as a treatment or prevention method for either type of arthritis.
What is Black Cherry Juice Concentrate?
Black cherry juice concentrate contains significantly less water than black cherry juice. In order to create black cherry juice concentrate, manufacturers apply specialized filtration and extraction processes. The resulting product contains a greater concentration of nutritional compounds than black cherry juice.
Black Cherry Juice vs. Tart Cherry Juice
Some research suggests that tart cherry juice (a variety of juice made from the Prunus cerasus) may offer certain health benefits. For example, preliminary studies show that consumption of tart cherry juice may fight oxidative stress, improve sleep quality, and protect against abdominal obesity. Like black cherry juice, tart cherry juice is rich in anthocyanins.
Where to Buy Black Cherry Juice
Widely available for purchase online, black cherry juice is sold in many grocery stores and natural-food stores.
Should You Use Black Cherry Juice for Health Purposes?
Due to the lack of supporting research, it's too soon to recommend black cherry juice for any health condition. However, it's possible that drinking black cherry juice may help enhance your overall health by increasing your anthocyanin intake.
You can also increase your anthocyanin intake by including anthocyanin-rich foods like berries, red onions, kidney beans, pomegranates, and red grapes in your diet on a frequent basis.
It's important to note that self-treating a chronic condition with black cherry juice and avoiding or delaying standard care may have serious consequences.
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