When I was a kid I couldn't even handle the smell of cherries let alone the taste, but I think I was just brainwashed by cherry flavored cough medicine. Now I can't get enough of the little guys, even though I usually get really frustrated by fruits that are more pit than actual edible fruit!
I'm glad my taste buds have changed, because they're incredibly good for you! Here are a few reasons (other than the fact that they are delicious!!!) for you to start celebrating summer by chowing down on cherries.
They reduce inflammation: Specifically, cherry juice can ease joint inflammation for people who suffer from arthritis and gout, according to a University of Vermont study.
They're a good source of vitamin C and fiber: A one-cup serving of cherries contains 25 percent of your daily recommended amount of vitamin C and over two grams of fiber!
They can improve brain function: If you make it a habit to snack on tart cherries, you could be improving your brain in the long run. Research has shown that cherries can even reduce symptoms of Alzheimer's disease.
They prevent muscle damage: Cherries reduce muscle soreness after a workout, and they can prevent greater muscle damage in the long run.
They fight cardiovascular disease: University of Michigan Health system researchers found that cherries can "alter factors linked to heart disease and diabetes."
They help you sleep: Cherries are a natural source of melatonin, a hormone that helps control sleep. A study published in the Journal of Medicinal Food found that, specifically, tart cherry juice can improve sleep in adults affected by insomnia.
Check out these amazing recipes if you get sick of raw cherries (but how could you?!)