Small, in-depth study finds levels for nine biomarkers of inflammation improved.
Adding 45 sweet Bing cherries to the diet each day has been shown to lower levels of a variety of indicators for chronic inflammatory diseases such as arthritis, high blood pressure, diabetes and cardiovascular disease, a small, in-depth study by researchers at UC Davis School of Medicine has found.
The researchers found that cherry consumption selectively improved circulating blood levels for nine biomarkers of inflammatory disease. The work suggests that cherries may be an important addition to the diet to improve health, especially for individuals at risk for inflammatory diseases.
Researchers have increasingly linked chronic inflammation — the body’s immune response to injury, infection and other harmful stimuli that damage cells — to some of the most common diseases of aging. They also have associated reduced levels of certain biomarkers with reduced severity of symptoms.
Elevated C-reactive protein, for example, is a known risk factor for cardiovascular disease, diabetes and metabolic syndrome, and the potent vasoconstrictor endothelin-1 (ET-1) has known proliferative, profibrotic and proinflammatory properties that may contribute to many facets of diabetic vascular disease. Studies conducted in rats also have associated reduced C-reactive protein and tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNFa) levels and increased interleukin-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1RA) levels with a lessening of arthritis symptoms. In fact, TNFa drugs are now licensed for treating rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease.