Not Enough Fruit in Your Diet? Try a New Form Experts Say Dried, Frozen and Juice Count Just As Much



    LANSING, Mich., March 28 /PRNewswire/ -- If you're one of the millions
 of Americans not getting enough fruits and vegetables in your diet, perhaps
 it's your "form." A recent study by the Centers for Disease Control and
 Prevention(i) showed nearly 70 percent of Americans aren't eating enough
 fruit. Experts say one reason may be because people don't know how to fit
 more fruit into their diets, so the Produce for Better Health Foundation is
 putting out a call to remind people that all forms count -- dried, frozen
 and 100% juice can be just as nutritious and even more convenient than
 fresh varieties.
     In fact, fruits in many forms are a growing trend. Food Technology(ii),
 one of the food industry's leading publications, says the time is ripe for
 "superfruits" like tart cherries that are available year-round in dried,
 frozen, juice and juice concentrate. Not only are cherries easy and
 convenient, studies show they contain among the highest amounts of
 antioxidants compared to other fruits. Furthermore, research suggests
 cherries may have many potential health benefits including easing arthritis
 pain and reducing risk factors for heart disease.
     Registered dietitian and TV Chef Ellie Krieger says cherries are a
 great way to boost your fruit intake.
     "Half the battle of getting more fruits is making them accessible,"
 says Krieger. "Cherries are one of the most convenient, versatile choices
 on the market because they are available year-round as dried, frozen and
 juice, so you can easily incorporate them in to your diet every single
 day."
     In fact just 1/2 cup of dried cherries and an 8-ounce glass of 100%
 cherry juice gets you two servings in a day. Recipes and tips that can make
 it easy to incorporate cherries into breakfast, lunch, snacktime and
 dinner, as well as a link to the USDA's fruit serving guide, can be found
 on http://www.choosecherries.com .
     Cherries. Not Just Another Berry
     To help boost awareness of the benefits of tart cherries the Cherry
 Marketing Institute (CMI) has launched a consumer education campaign. As
 part of the program CMI unveiled the first-ever Cherry Nutrition Report, a
 compendium of science revealing that cherries have among the highest
 antioxidant content compared to other fruits and are linked to many
 potential health benefits. Highlights include:
     -- Powerful antioxidants called anthocyanins, give tart cherries their
        distinctive red color. These rich red pigments are a type of
        phytonutrient known as flavonoids, which have been linked to health
        benefits from protecting against heart disease and cancer to helping
        keep the brain sharp.
     -- Cherries may help ease the pain of arthritis and gout. Studies suggest
        cherries are one of the richest sources of anthocyanins 1 and 2, which
        help block cyclooygenase 1 and 2  (or COX-1 and COX-2) -- also a
        feature of some pain medications.
     -- Cherries are on one of the few known food sources of the antioxidant
        melatonin, which helps regulate your sleep-wake cycle and may help
        promote a more restful sleep.
     -- Additional studies suggest that the compounds in cherries may help
        lower blood cholesterol and reduce the risk of insulin resistance
        syndrome, or pre-diabetes, which has become an epidemic in this
        country.
     More information on the CDC report, the Food Technology article and a
 copy of the Cherry Nutrition Report can be found at
 http://www.choosecherries.com . You can also find cherry recipes, menu
 ideas and more information on where to buy cherry products.
      (i)  Blanck HM, Galuska DA, Gillepspie C, Khan LK, Serdula MK, Solera MK,
           Mokdad AH, Cohen LP.  Fruit and vegetable consumption among adults
           -- United States, 2005" CDC: Morbidity and Mortality Weekly 2007;
           56: 213-217.
      (ii) Pszczola, D. "Time is Ripe for these Superheroes", Food Technology,
           March, 2007.
 
 

SOURCE Cherry Marketing Institute

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