Tart Cherry Juice Drinkers Could Gain An Hour of Sleep

Cold cherry summer drink in glasses

A double-blind, placebo-controlled pilot study reported recently in the American Journal of Therapeutics found that drinking Montmorency tart cherry juice extended sleep time by an average of 84 minutes in older patients with insomnia.

“Insomnia is quite common among older adults and it can lead to a range of health issues if left untreated,” observed lead researcher Jack Losso, who is a professor in the School of Nutrition and Food Sciences at Louisiana State University Agricultural Center in Baton Rouge. “However, many people are hesitant to resort to medications to help them sleep. That’s why natural sleep remedies are increasingly of interest and in demand.”

The crossover study randomized 8 insomniacs aged 50 years and older to receive 2 weeks of tart cherry juice or 2 weeks of a similar-tasting placebo consumed each morning and 1-2 hours before bedtime, followed by a 2-week period during which treatments were switched. Sleep questionnaires were completed by the participants at the beginning of the study and at the end of each 2-week treatment period.

At the conclusion of each treatment period, overnight polysomnography confirmed an extra 84 minutes of sleep among those who received 2 weeks of tart cherry juice. Additionally, questionnaire responses following cherry juice consumption reported increased sleep efficiency. Those who received tart cherry juice experienced a decrease in prostaglandin E2 (PGE2, associated with inflammation) and serum kynurenine-to-tryptophan ratio, indicating increased tryptophan availability. (The amino acid L-tryptophan is known to help improve sleep when consumed before bedtime.)

The researchers determined that tart cherry juice procyanidin B-2 inhibited serum indoleanmine 2,3-dioxygenase, which explains, in part, the ability of the fruit to improve sleep efficiency. The pilot study’s results will form the basis for a larger clinical trial.

About Life Extension

Life Extensionists are people who believe in taking advantage of documented scientific therapies to help maintain optimal health and slow aging. The medical literature contains thousands of references on the use of antioxidant vitamins, weight loss supplements, and hormones that have been shown to improve the quality and quantity of life. Life Extensionists attempt to take advantage of this scientific information to enhance their chances of living longer in good health.
What Do FoodTrients Do?
Ai Anti- inflammatories

Reduce inflammatory process in cells, tissues, and blood vessels, helping to slow aging and reduce risk of long-term disease.

Ao Anti- oxidant

Prevents and repairs oxidative damage to cells caused by free radicals.

IB Immunity Boosters

Support the body’s resistance to infection and strengthen immune vigilance and response.

MB Mind

Improves mood, memory, and focus.

F Disease Prevention

Reduces risk factors for common degenerative and age-related diseases.