A study from Northumbria University, Britain has revealed that consumption of Montmorency tart cherries lowers uric acid level in urine.
The study also found an increase in specific anthocyanin compounds in the bloodstream after consuming tart cherries.
"We have been investigating Montmorency tart cherries for several years because they're a unique fruit with a high concentration of anthocyanins," said Glyn Howatson from the department of sport, exercise and rehabilitation at the Northumbria University.
Tart cherries have long been researched for their association with pain relief - ranging from gout and arthritis (joint pain) to exercise-related muscle pain.
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For the study, the team gave 12 healthy people two doses of Montmorency tart cherry juice concentrate: about 30 ml of the juice concentrate mixed with 100 ml of water or 60 ml of juice concentrate mixed with 100 ml of water.
They found that blood levels of uric acid was reduced and urinary uric acid was increased following consumption of tart cherry juice.
A second study by Sara M. Warber from the University of Michigan found that the antioxidant capacity in the blood was elevated after eating whole frozen Montmorency tart cherries (45 or 90 cherries) and remained elevated even 12 hours after eating the 90 cherries.
"Our current study was conducted with a healthy population, although more research is needed to determine the specific benefits of Montmorency tart cherry juice for individuals with inflammatory diseases, including gout and other arthritic conditions," concluded the authors.
Both the studies appeared in the Journal of Functional Foods.