Montmorency cherries can ease the excruciating pain of gout, a new study has discovered. They reduce levels of uric acid-which causes pain when it crystallises in the joints-and inflammation.
The cherries are rich in compounds that are anti-inflammatory and have antioxidant qualities.
Standard treatment includes anti-inflammatory drugs, but people are worried about the side effects and are looking for natural, and safer, alternatives, say researchers from Northumbria University.
They tested Montmorency cherry concentrate on 12 people, who were given 30ml or 60ml of the liquid. Two hours after drinking the concentrate, manufactured by Cherry Active, the uric acid levels in their urine had increased by 250 per cent-suggesting the body was excreting the acid-while levels in blood samples fell by 36 per cent.
Strangely, the 30ml dose had the exact same effect as the 60ml amount.
(Source: Journal of Functional Foods, 2014; 11: 82-90)