Previously I’ve talked about a chronic condition that was healed through the near magical properties of tart cherry juice. [Editor’s note: after reading said article, I started drinking tart cherry juice to battle inflamed joints and aches, and am a full convert. If tart cherry is BTS, I’m the ARMY.] I found six other foods that boost the effects of this powerful anti-inflammatory fruit. Let’s look at the different foods that boost tart cherries!
Almonds are full of nutrients including fiber and Vitamin A, but did you know that they are an anti-inflammatory all on their own? Paired with cherries, this duo makes the perfect anti-swelling snack. I like to enjoy dried tart cherries and almonds together for a tart and sweet pick-me-up treat. In addition to having almonds as a snack, adding almond milk, cherry juice and chocolate powder creates the perfect night time drink. If you run out of chamomile tea and need to get to bed at a decent hour, this tonic will have you sleeping before you can count to fifty. Honestly, it is better than taking melatonin, while also being a powerful but tasty treat.
Who doesn’t love chocolate? Whether you are a fan of dark chocolate or prefer the lighter variety, chocolate is as healthy as it is delicious. Just make sure that you purchase the variety that is lower in sugar. Otherwise, eating chocolate might do more harm than good. Cacao nibs are also a fun addition. Chocolate is full of flavonoids that inhibit cancer causing agents and help with anti-aging. Two studies in 2018 found that 70% cacao organic dark chocolate had positive effects on stress, inflammation, mood, memory, and immunity. The next time you pass by the chocolate aisle, give dark chocolate a try. Even though it took a bit of getting used to, eating dark chocolate has become a habit that is indulgent. As long as you stick to smaller quantities, you should be good to go.
Green Tea (and other teas)
I love tea. It is full of health benefits and has as many flavors as one can imagine. Green tea in particular is one of my favorite additions to tart cherries and I often add them to the tea to add a more fruity flavor. If you are not keen on the tart taste, adding stevia or even other fruits work wonders. Currently, I am enjoying adding seasonal fruits to my teas in addition to dried tart cherries or a splash of tart cherry juice.
When the summer comes or whenever you can find pineapples, they are the perfect food addition to anyone who is looking to lower inflammation. Not only is pineapple delightfully sweet, but it contains bromelain, which is known to relax tense muscles and lower inflammation. In fact, pineapple is so powerful it has been used in Central America and South America to treat a variety of illnesses. This makes tart cherry juice and pineapple the perfect after exercise cocktail. Whenever I drink this concoction, I never have to worry about having sore muscles the next day from exercise. What a wonderful natural alternative to easing muscle pain. The best part is that this drink is also perfect for those moments that you have a sweet tooth and want something sweet, cold, and refreshing.
Although doctors mention to eat this fruit at least once a day, they do not mention what to pair with it to boost its healing properties. Tart cherry and apple juice is a powerful Vitamin C tonic. This is one of my go-to tonics for fighting colds and other symptoms when I am feeling a bit under the weather. It is also relatively easy to make and always tastes great. For people that do not like the tartness of tart cherries, mixing a golden delicious or envy apple into the mix will create a juice that is sweet but full of vitamins. For those brave souls that fully embrace the tartness, try mixing the cherry juice with a granny smith apple or another tart variety.
Tart cherry juice and celery may sound like a strange combination, but hear me out! Celery offers the benefit of lowering blood pressure and inflammation and to some is relatively mild in flavor. When making smoothies, I love adding celery to the blender since I know that its flavor will never interfere with the rest of the drink. Creating cherry and celery juice in the mornings or in the afternoons are great ways to increase energy without relying on caffeine to get through the day. If you are not fond of tea but are looking to cut down on or eliminate coffee, tart cherry juice and celery make an excellent team.
Now that you know a few options to boost your inflammation, the options for what you can create are endless. Eating more foods that get rid of inflammation will not only help you live longer, but offer a more naturally pain-free life. Give these combos a try. I’m sure you will find a favorite.
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