Growing up, one of my favorite childhood memories is participating in the ever-so-ladylike sport of cherry pit spitting. My family would line up on the edge of the deck with a bowl of succulent cherries, and measure our self-worth by whether or not we could beat the reigning champion, my mother.
Although I never could live up to my mother’s pit-spitting prowess, those piles of cherries eaten on hot summer days provided my growing body with important nutrients.
Cherry Health Benefits
- One cup of cherries contains only 87 calories.
- Researchers have shown a link between cherry consumption and reduced belly fat.
- Cherries can help combat gout and osteoarthritis.
- Natural fiber found in cherries is good for digestion and weight management.
- Cherries protect against strokes, high cholesterol, blood pressure and diabetes.
- Anti-inflammatory benefits of cherries help ease soreness in joints and muscles.
- Drinking cherry juice may help improve sleep quality.
- Cherries contain 16 percent of your recommended daily vitamin C.
- Tart cherries are perfect for pies and preservatives.
- Sweet cherries are delicious on their own.
- Tart cherries are more resistant to cold weather, while sweet cherries prefer mild, dry climates.
- Approximately 75 percent of sweet cherries in the country are sold at fresh markets and 25 percent are processed.
- Michigan, Utah and Washington are the top cherry producing states in the country.
- The United States is the largest exporter of cherries in the world.
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Whether you are enjoying them baked in a pie, canned, juiced, frozen, blended into a smoothie, or are just eating them to bring honor to you family with your pit-spitting abilities, cherries are a delicious choice. Check out these scrumptious cherry recipes.