Researchers have shown that this juice, naturally rich in melatonin, can increase sleep time by 30 minutes per night.
Difficulty falling asleep, waking up at night… Insomnia would affect 2 out of 10 women and 1 in 10 men, according to Public Health France. Sleep disorders are therefore very common. “If medications can provide transitional help when taken appropriately and over a short period of time, the long-term solution is rarely take sleeping pills. Ultimately, the sleeping pill is not effective for insomnia and can cause other problems, such as difficulty concentrating, or drowsiness or falls during the day.“, told us Dr Nicolas Vitello, neurologist and sleep doctor during a report on insomnia. It is better to opt for natural alternatives…
An increase in sleep time by 30 minutes
Researchers at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge in the United States may have found a more natural solution. In their study published in the Journal of Medicinal Food, they suggest that drinking a glass of cherry juice a day could increase sleep duration by 30 minutes in people with chronic insomnia. To achieve this observation, the researchers asked 15 healthy people (8 men, 7 women) aged over 65 years to drink every day for 2 weeks a 230 ml glass of cherry juice in the morning (between 8 and 10 a.m.) and a second glass of 230 ml one to two hours before going to bed. There was a two-week break, then the participants then drank a so-called “placebo” drink in the same quantity for two weeks as well. During this test phase, the researchers studied each participant’s sleep usinga polysomnograph, a tool that records sleep, ventilation and body movements throughout the night. Participants were also asked to respond to a questionnaire on their feelings regarding fatigue, drowsiness, anxiety or depression. At the end of the analysis, the researchers showed that the total duration of sleep after drinking 2 glasses of cherry juice was 418 minutes (either 7 hours) compared to 388 minutes (i.e. 6h30) before the experiment and 409 minutes (i.e. 6h45) with the placebo drink. Also, the duration of nocturnal awakenings was reduced by 17 minutes when participants consumed cherry juice.
More effective than valerian?
The cherry juice given to participants was made from Montmorençy cherries, a variety of tart cherries. In one glass, there was the equivalent of 50 cherries (the participants therefore ingested the equivalent of 100 cherries per day). These tart cherries have “a relatively high melatonin contenta substance that regulates sleep”. According to researchers, the effect on sleep is also linked to the fact that they are very rich in anthocyanins (pigments responsible for their red color), “anti-inflammatory agents that may be closely linked to sleep modulation“. This study has limitations and needs to be supplemented by other research. However, researchers already believe that tart cherry juice could have “equal or greater effects to those observed in studies on valerian and melatonin, the two most studied natural products against insomnia. These effects, however, were considerably lower than those of evidence-based insomnia treatments: hypnotic agents (midazolam and propofol) And cognitive-behavioral therapies (CBT) for insomnia“, they conclude.