Have you seen the latest trend on tart cherry juice for better sleep? Wondering if it will work for you? As a dietitian, I’m often asked which is better: tart cherry juice vs capsules?
Tart cherry juice (or capsules) may in fact help you sleep better. They also have the potential to reduce inflammation and aid in exercise recovery.
But which one should you choose? Don’t fret! Let’s jump in and find out which option is juicier – tart cherry juice or convenient capsules?
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What is Tart Cherry Juice?
Derived from Montmorency cherries, also known as sour cherries, this liquid gem is no ordinary fruit juice. It’s a potent potion, brimming with an impressive array of nutrients and antioxidants that can work wonders for your well-being.
The antioxidants in tart cherry juice (called anthocyanins) create the deep crimson hue of the cherries. They also are the key to a host of health benefits from fighting chronic inflammation to reducing muscle soreness after exercise.
So, pour yourself a glass of this amazing elixir, and let the tantalizing color and flavor transport you to a realm of improved health and vitality.
Health Benefits of Tart Cherry Juice and Capsules
Indulging in a glass of tart cherry juice (or other tart cherry product) isn’t just a treat for your taste buds; it’s a powerful ally in boosting your overall health.
Tart cherry is a superhero when it comes to fighting inflammation. It’s loaded with antioxidants like anthocyanins that help calm those inflammatory fires.
The anti-inflammatory properties of tart cherries may alleviate joint pain and other symptoms of osteoarthritis (which is a degenerative joint disease 1), and inflammatory arthritis (also known as gout) which is a result of a build-up of uric acid in your body (2).
Get back on your feet faster with tart cherry! For athletic performance, tart cherry can be a game-changer. Those anti-inflammatory properties work wonders for recovery from strenuous exercise, reducing post-workout muscle soreness and promoting faster tissue repair (3).
Incorporating it into your post-workout routine can help you bounce back faster and achieve your fitness goals. Say hello to less muscle pain and faster healing. You’ll be ready to crush your next workout in no time!
Need some quality shut-eye? Tart cherry to the rescue! It’s a natural source of melatonin, the hormone that regulates your sleep-wake cycles. It also contains a small amount of tryptophan (that amino acid that induces post-thanksgiving nap time).
Though why it is effective at helping fight insomnia is not completely clear, enjoying tart cherry regularly can improve sleep quality and duration, as well as sleep efficiency which is the total amount of time you are asleep compared to how long you are in bed (4).
Having tried this myself recently, I can say it definitely seems to be helping!
Plus, tart cherry has no side effects like other sleep aids might. Here’s to a more restful night’s slumber!
Tart cherries have your heart’s back. The antioxidants in tart cherries, like anthocyanins and quercetin, are heart-healthy warriors. They fight inflammation and reduce oxidative stress.
Tart cherry may also keep your cholesterol and blood pressure levels in check (5). Your ticker will thank you!
One recent study in mice found a link between tart cherry supplementation and stronger bones (6). We’ll drink to that!
Prepare to be dazzled by the antioxidant power of tart cherry! Those antioxidants work hard to protect your cells from damage, slow down aging, and keep chronic diseases at bay (7). It’s like having your very own superhero squad inside your body!
Whether you seek relief from inflammation, better sleep, or enhanced exercise recovery, tart cherry can be a valuable addition to your daily routine.
Tart Cherry Juice: Pros and Cons
Tart cherry juice is a treasure trove of goodness, loaded with nutrients and antioxidants. Here’s why it’s such a fantastic addition to your diet:
High Concentration of Nutrients and Antioxidants
Tart cherry juice is a concentrated source of nutrients and antioxidants that offer numerous health benefits. It contains essential vitamins, minerals, and powerful antioxidants like anthocyanins.
By drinking tart cherry juice, you can fuel your body with these valuable compounds. These nutrients and antioxidants support your immune system, promote healthy skin, reduce inflammation, and fight free radicals to protect against cellular damage.
Natural and Minimally Processed
One of the wonderful aspects of tart cherry juice is that it is a natural and minimally processed form of enjoying the benefits of cherries. This means that it retains the nutritional value and beneficial compounds found in the fruit, without unnecessary additives or artificial flavors.
This minimal processing ensures that the juice maintains its vibrant color and fresh flavor, providing a delightful sensory experience. So, when you raise a glass of tart cherry juice, you’re embracing the goodness straight from nature’s bounty.
Synergistic Effect of Other Beneficial Compounds in Juice
When it comes to tart cherry products, choosing juice over capsules offers a unique advantage. Drinking tart cherry juice provides the synergistic effect of multiple beneficial compounds naturally present in the fruit.
Unlike capsules that may focus on isolated extracts, tart cherry juice encompasses a broader range of compounds such as antioxidants, flavonoids, and polyphenols.
This natural synergy is believed to enhance the health benefits, potentially improving inflammation reduction, sleep quality, exercise recovery, and more. By opting for tart cherry juice, you’re reaping the rewards of the fruit’s diverse composition.
Drawbacks of Tart Cherry Juice
While tart cherry juice is a health superstar, it’s important to be aware of a few things to make an informed decision:
High Sugar Content
Tart cherry juice can be naturally sweet, but that sweetness comes with a price. It contains natural sugars (and some brands may contain added sugars). Too much sugar in your diet is linked to high blood pressure and high blood sugar levels.
These in turn increase your risk of diabetes and other chronic disease, so sip wisely!
Keep an Eye on Calories
Along with the sugar content, tart cherry juice also contains calories. Excessive consumption may contribute to a higher calorie intake and potentially lead to weight gain. Moderation is key!
Short Shelf Life
Fresh tart cherry juice has a limited shelf life, and it needs to be refrigerated to maintain its freshness. This might be a small inconvenience if you prefer a longer-lasting option or if you’re always on the go without access to refrigeration.
Now that you know the upsides and downsides of tart cherry juice, you can make an informed decision that suits your lifestyle and health goals.
Just remember to enjoy it in moderation, be mindful of your sugar and calorie intake, and if you have any specific health concerns, it’s always a good idea to chat with a healthcare professional. Cheers to your health and to the delightful tang of tart cherry juice!
Tart Cherry Juice Capsules: Pros and Cons
There are several benefits to capsules over juice when adding tart cherry to your diet.
Easy Peasy Convenience
Tart cherry capsules are super convenient! You can take them on the go without any fuss, making it a breeze to incorporate into your daily routine or when you’re traveling.
With capsules, you get a standardized dosage of tart cherry extract or concentrate. No need to measure or guess how much to take – it’s all done for you!
Extended Shelf Life
Unlike fresh juice, tart cherry capsules have a longer shelf life. You don’t have to worry about refrigeration or the juice going bad. They’re there for you whenever you need them.
Unlike drinking several ounces of tart cherry juice, a recent randomized controlled trial found that a tart cherry powder can have similar health benefits without adding extra calories to your day (8).
Drawbacks of Tart Cherry Juice Capsules
Like for tart cherry juice itself, there are also potential drawbacks to taking tart cherry capsules:
Missing Out on the Whole Picture
Capsules may focus on specific extracts or isolated compounds, which means you might not get the full range of benefits that come from all the amazing compounds found in the whole fruit, like you would with tart cherry juice.
Sneaky Additives or Fillers
Some tart cherry capsule product formulas might contain additives or fillers that you won’t find in natural juice. If you have specific dietary preferences or restrictions, this is something to watch out for.
Dietary supplements are considered food, not drugs, by the FDA. But some of them can have strong effects on your body, which might not be a good mix for older adults or those on blood thinners or with a medical condition like diabetes or kidney stones.
To play it safe, it’s best to get professional medical advice before starting any dietary supplement. That way you’ll know exactly what’s right for you.
No Sensory Delight
Let’s face it, capsules lack the sensory experience that comes with drinking tart cherry juice. You won’t get the pleasure of savoring the taste, enjoying the vibrant color, or relishing the fruity aroma.
When it comes to tart cherry capsules, the convenience and standardized dosage are definite perks. However, it’s important to consider the potential drawbacks. Ultimately, your personal preferences, health goals, and individual circumstances should guide your decision.
Tart Cherry Juice vs Capsules: Choosing the Right Option
When it comes to choosing between tart cherry juice and capsules, there are a few things to keep in mind that will help you make the right decision:
Your Tastes and Lifestyle
Think about what you enjoy and what fits into your daily routine. Do you love the taste and experience of sipping juice, or do you prefer the ease and convenience of capsules? Consider which option feels more natural and enjoyable for you.
Your Health Goals and Needs
Consider why you want to incorporate tart cherries into your routine. Are you looking to reduce inflammation, improve sleep, or aid in exercise recovery? Different forms may have varying effects, so think about which form aligns best with your specific health goals.
Let’s talk dollars and cents. Tart cherry juice can be pricier than capsules, especially if you go for high-quality or fresh options. Take a moment to think about your budget and how much you’re willing to invest in your tart cherry journey.
By taking these factors into account you’ll be able to make a decision that feels right for you. Whether you choose tart cherry juice or capsules, the important thing is to embrace the benefits of these wonderful fruits in a way that suits your lifestyle and supports your well-being.
Tart Cherry Juice vs Capsules: Conclusion
In the battle between tart cherry juice and capsules, both options have their merits.
Consumption of tart cherry juice brings the natural goodness of the whole fruit, with all its amazing nutrients and antioxidants. It’s a treat for your taste buds and adds a delightful touch to your daily routine.
On the other hand, tart cherry capsules offer convenience, standardized dosages, and a longer shelf life, making them a practical choice for those on the go.
When it comes down to it, choosing between tart cherry juice and capsules is all about what works best for you.
Whether you’re enjoying the delight of tart cherry juice or popping those handy capsules, you’re reaping the positive effects of these fantastic fruits. So, go ahead and embrace the power of tart cherries in a way that fits your groove.
Kate is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and certified yoga instructor with a Master’s in Public Health. She loves to share what she has learned about nutrition and yoga to help people live healthier, more balanced lives. When not working on this blog or teaching yoga, Kate is usually spending time with family and friends or reading a good book.