Sweet, tart and ruby red, you could almost liken cherries to nature’s candy. And if you’ve got a serious sweet tooth, they’re one candy you should be indulging in much more frequently—and here’s why:
One cup of cherries has about 260 mg of potassium (nearly that of a small banana), which helps keep blood pressure in check.
Cherries also contain good amounts the antioxidants of quercetin and anthocyanin, which help protect against cancer and cardiovascular disease.
A recent study in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, found that runners who downed 24 ounces of tart cherry juice for 7 days leading up to a race noted significantly lower amounts of muscle pain and a faster recovery.
Cherries may also (no, we’re not done yet) help you sleep more soundly given their melatonin content—though you might still have that pesky snoring issue to tackle.
Finally, they pack a good dose of dietary fiber to keep you maintain a healthy weight…and functioning digestive system. (Enough said).
Convinced? Here are five easy ways to work more of these bite-size fruits into your diet.