Muscle pain and strength loss seem almost inevitable as we age, but continuing to maintain muscle mass is important for overall health. It keeps us strong, assists us in daily activities, and promotes healthy metabolism, which is particularly important for diabetics.
But although building and maintaining muscle is important, it can be difficult due to aches and pains, another common occurrence that comes with older age. Well, research has shown that consuming a popular fruit after workout helps reduce muscle pain and prevent strength loss.
Cherries reduce muscle pain and strength loss
Studies have shown that drinking cherry juice after a workout reduces the amount of muscle pain you may experience. This is because cherries contain powerful antioxidants that benefit the muscles.
The study was carried out by researchers at the University of Vermont studying 14 volunteers who exercised over the course of seven days. Participants either drank a cherry/apple juice mix or a drink with no cherries three days prior to exercising and the remaining four days after exercising.
The volunteers completed arm flexing. Both the drinks and the arms were alternated. Arm muscles were flexed and tensed 20 times in only one arm. After two weeks, the process was repeated, but the participants who drank cherry juice switched to the other drink mixture, and vice versa. The arm muscle exercise was switched as well.
The researchers found that those who drank the beverage based on cherries experienced only 4 percent muscle strength loss, compared to 22 percent in the volunteers who drank the beverage containing no cherries. Muscle pain experienced was also lowered, at 2.4 percent in the cherry group compared to 3.2 percent in the non-cherry group. Furthermore, after 96 hours, those who drank the cherry juice gained more muscle strength.
Although the study was small, it does show the benefits of consuming cherries when working out. Therefore, if you’re a senior and want to reduce muscle pain and prevent strength loss, you may want to try adding cherries into your diet as a natural pain reliever.
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