Tart cherries can be sweet, sour and delicious, but taste is not the reason why they would make a great addition to the diet of an aspiring athlete. Research shows that Montmorency cherries may have surprising performance-enhancing benefits that are well-suited for the busy lifestyle & intense training regimens of elite athletes. These powerful qualities may improve sleep cycles, reduce inflammation, boost your immune system and decrease the occurrence of DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness).
Improved Sleep Quality
Whether you are looking to regulate your sleep cycles or an athlete struggling to quiet your mind – adding tart cherry juice to your nightly routine – may be just what the coach ordered. Montmorency cherries contain melatonin, a natural hormone produced by the body to regulate our sleep and wake cycles. Essentially meaning that you may spend more time in your REM state (dreaming) throughout the night, leaving you refreshed and motivated to take on the day. Quality sleep is especially important for an athlete, because without it they may become more easily distracted, have slower reflexes, motivation may be almost non-existent and faster muscle fatigue may be inevitable. Give cherry juice concentrate a try and see if it works for you.
Individuals who have been athletic their whole lives may experience joint pain related to inflammation such as osteoarthritis, the breaking down of cartilage between our joints. Tart cherries, however, contain a high level of anthocyanin – a flavonoid with similar properties to NSAID’s (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs). The benefits of using natural whole foods to supplement various medications is possibly decreasing the negative side effects associated with continuous use.
Every athlete learns to live & love the pain cave, but you cannot argue with the fact that it is simply more enjoyable to train without the fear of joint pain holding us back.
Less Frequent Muscle Pain (DOMS)
In compliment, the anti-inflammatory benefits may also decrease the amount of muscle soreness an athlete feels before, during and after an event. Instead of popping the ibuprofen pills you would normal use as a preemptive strike to limit pain, give cherry juice its well-deserved shot. The reduction in soreness may allow for harder, more frequent training sessions to help athletes reach their goals & surpass previous plateaus.
Second to being injured, there is nothing worse than finishing off a big training cycle to hit your peak with perfect timing, then waking up the next day to a sore throat & runny nose. These symptoms can be detrimental to an athlete’s optimum performance in a big race, game or competition. If there was a natural way to give your immune system an extra boost would you try it?
Studies show that Montmorency cherries may provide just that – means to fight the depression of your immune system, which is imminent when pushing your body past its limits.
Besides the benefits mentioned above tart cherries/juice are loaded with Vitamin K, manganese, Vitamin A and potassium; these qualities may provide any person with a variety of health benefits. Why not give it a go? They are delicious!
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