What Even is Tart Cherry, and Do You Need It?

Written by: Jenna A. Werner, RD  

As a registered dietitian, one of the most common questions I get from clients and individuals is, “what is this supplement and do I need it?”  

And the answer always is, “maybe, let’s discuss!” 

So if you have seen the buzz about Tart Cherry out there in the social world and you are curious if it is for you, you are in the right place.  

Let’s dive in and learn more about these little powerful fruits!  

So what even is a tart cherry?! 

A tart cherry is a type of cherry! Many don’t realize that there are many different varieties of cherries out there that range in color, (bright to deep red) flavor (from tart to sweet) and nutritional value. Tart cherries are always “in season” as they are often enjoyed and available dried, frozen or as juice. 

Are they the same as a sweet cherry? 

Tart cherries and sweet cherries are grown in different areas of the United States.  

Sweet cherries, most common are the Bing variety, are what you are likely most familiar with from the produce department at your local grocer.   

Tart cherries are a brighter red and as the name describes, have a sour, tart taste, mostly due to less sugar in the fruit. Tart cherries are primarily grown and found in Michigan.   

Both sweet and tart cherries contain several antioxidants and polyphenols that provide antioxidant and inflammation response benefits. However, tart cherries are shown to be higher in vitamin C, niacin, vitamin A, beta carotene and total phenols or antioxidants. 

What are the benefits?  

Montmorency tart cherries in particular have been the subject of much scientific research, and there is growing evidence for the following benefits: 

  1. Helps reduce inflammation and muscle soreness after exercise or physical activity - Tart cherry consumption helps reduce markers of inflammation when taken in periods leading up to and after intense exercise. 
  1. Supports healthy blood glucose levels - Tart cherries have powerful antioxidant properties because of their high anthocyanin content that may have a beneficial impact on supporting healthy blood sugar. Additionally, tart cherries are a low glycemic index food! So there’s no sudden blood sugar spike. 
  1. Promotes metabolic health - It’s true: tart cherries are a metabolic superfood! How? They help support healthy uric acid levels in your body. Uric acid is a waste byproduct created by the breakdown of many common foods, including red meat, sugar, seafood and beer. 
  1. Supports immune health - Tart cherries are antioxidant rich and provide nutrients such as vitamin C that support your immune response. 

Can I just eat a handful of tart cherries, or should I try a supplement?  

As a registered dietitian, it is my job and duty to tell you that everyone’s needs are unique and research is constantly on-going. If after reading this article you fit into a bucket listed above as someone who would benefit from tart cherry, I highly recommend HumanN’s Tart Cherry gummies, made from clinically studied tart cherry extract, to give you the beneficial dose of 500mg tart cherry extract. Supplementation is often recommended when paired with a balanced diet, healthy forms of movement, and a conversation with your medical care team. 

If you decide this is the right supplement for you, I have to add another cool fact about HumanN’s Tart Cherry gummies: they’re up to 40 times more concentrated in polyphenols than other leading tart cherry powders and extracts, and easier and quicker to ingest than taking in juice form. In fact, just one serving gives you the antioxidant equivalent of 100 tart cherries, or 16 oz. of tart cherry juice, with none of the sugar. The efficiency of the product alone may lead to more consistency with consumption. 

Ready to add some tart cherry to your wellness routine?   
Click Here to Try HumanN Tart Cherry Gummies!