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Tart Cherries May Reduce Inflammation, Lower Risk for Type 2 Diabetes & Heart Disease
Date:4/6/2008

New Study Reinforces Anti-Inflammatory Properties of Red Hot 'Super Fruit'

SAN DIEGO, April 6, 2008 /PRNewswire/- A new study shows tart cherries, one of today's hottest "Super Fruits," may help reduce inflammation, potentially lowering the risk of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease in animals. The study was presented by University of Michigan researchers today at the Experimental Biology annual meeting. As science continues to reveal inflammation may be a marker for many chronic diseases, the researchers say emerging studies like this are important in examining the role diet may play in disease management and prevention.

At-risk rats with metabolic syndrome (obese, pre-diabetic) and lean, healthy rats were fed a cherry-enriched "Western Diet," characterized by high fat and moderate carbohydrate -- in line with the typical American diet. Cherry-enriched diets, which consisted of whole tart cherry powder as 1 percent of the diet, reduced two known markers of inflammation by up to 50 percent. TNF-alpha was reduced by 50 percent in the lean rats and 40 percent in the at-risk rats and interleukin 6 (IL-6) was lowered by 31 percent in the at-risk rats and 38 percent in the lean rats.

While inflammation is a normal process the body uses to fight off infection or injury, according to recent science, a chronic state of inflammation could increase the risk for diseases.

"We're learning how important reducing inflammation is for our overall health and lowering the risk for heart disease and type 2 diabetes -- two of the most critical health epidemics we have in this country today," said study co-author Dr. Steven F. Bolling, a cardiac surgeon at the University of Michigan Cardiovascular Center who also heads the U-M Cardioprotection Research Laboratory, where the study was performed. "This study offers further promise that foods rich in antioxidants, such as cherries, could potentially reduce inflammation and lower disease risk." '/>"/>

SOURCE The Cherry Marketing Institute
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