Cherry Nutrition Facts and Health Benefits (2023)

Cherries are a nutritious, sweet treat that can be a colorful addition to a variety of dishes. The reputation of cherries as a dessert ingredient may make you wonder whether they're healthy enough to eat daily. Cherries do provide several health benefits, especially when prepared without added sugars.

Cherry Nutrition Facts

A 1 cup (138g) serving of unpitted cherries provides 87 calories, 17.7g of sugar, and 22g of carbohydrates. Cherries are also a good source of vitamin C, calcium, iron, magnesium, and potassium. The following nutrition information is provided by the USDA.

  • Calories:87
  • Fat:0.3g
  • Sodium:0mg
  • Carbohydrates:22g
  • Fiber:3g
  • Sugars:17.7g
  • Protein:1.4g
  • Vitamin C: 9.7mg
  • Potassium: 306mg
  • Calcium: 17.9mg
  • Magnesium: 15.2mg

Carbs

A cup of cherries contains 22 grams of carbohydrate, most of which come from natural sugars. There are also 3 grams of fiber in 1 cup of cherries.

Fresh cherries are considered a low glycemic food (coming in at under 55 on the glycemic index). However, sweetened dried cherries or other varieties with added sugar will have a higher glycemic index.

Fats

Cherries are almost fat-free, with less than 1/2 gram per cup.

Protein

There are 1.5 grams of protein in 1 cup of fresh cherries.

Vitamins and Minerals

Cherries are a good source of vitamin C, potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron, and folate.

Calories

A single serving of sweet, raw cherries with pits (1 cup, or 138g) has 87 calories. A 1 cup serving (103g) of sour raw cherries with pits has 89 calories per serving. A 100-gram serving of canned, drained maraschino cherries has 165 calories.

Summary

Like most fruits, cherries are low in calories, fat, and protein. Cherries provide a healthy dose of vitamin C and potassium, and deliver an antioxidant boost from each serving.

Health Benefits

Although cherries are naturally high in sugar, they have a large concentration of beneficialphytonutrients that have positive health effects.

Prevents Gout

Fresh and canned cherries have been studied since the 1950s for arthritis treatment and gout prevention. Evidence of cherries' ability to restore normal uric acid levels has been demonstrated in multiple studies for decades.

(Video) Cherry Health Benefits and Cherry Nutrition Facts

A 2018 study showed that fresh cherry or cherry extract intake was associated with a 35% reduction in gout attacks during two days.

May Lower Risk of Cancer

The rich color in cherries comes from anthocyanins, powerful antioxidants that help the body mitigate cancer-causing oxidative damage. Cherries also have vitamin C, which may be associated with a lower risk of lung cancer in people who smoke.

In addition, the fiber in cherries is known to protect against colon cancer. Including cherries and other fruits and vegetables in your meal plan is a good step toward reducing the risk of several forms of cancer.

Reduces Muscle Soreness

Along with antioxidant properties, cherries are anti-inflammatory. Consuming tart cherries following intense exercise can reduce muscle damage. By measuring two common byproducts of exercise recovery, creatine kinase and lactate dehydrogenase, researchers found cherries beneficial in alleviating soreness and shortening recovery time.

Aids Heart Health

A single dose of Bing cherry juice has significantly reduced systolic and diastolic blood pressure levels within 2 hours in older adults. Given cherries' anti-inflammatory effects and high potassium content, it only makes sense to include cherries in a heart-healthy meal plan. By consuming whole cherries, you also get added cholesterol-lowering effects from the fiber.

Supports Memory Function

The flavonoids and anthocyanins in dark-colored cherries help protect the brain from oxidative damage. Oxidative damage can occur in the brain due to aging, environmental stressors like smoking, and chronic medical issues like high blood pressure or diabetes. Filling your menu with vibrant fruits and vegetables, like cherries, may help protect your memory over the years.

Allergies

Cherry allergies have been known to occur and are sometimes correlated with strawberry, grape, and other fruit and vegetable sensitivities. Symptoms of a cherry allergy can include hives, swelling, vomiting, tightness in the chest and. throat, and shortness of breath. See your doctor for a personalized evaluation if you suspect an allergy to cherries.

Adverse Effects

Cherry pits contain a dangerous chemical called amygdalin. Although you shouldn't worry if you accidentally swallow one pit, it's best to avoid it. Watch out for crushed cherry pits because the amygdalin is more readily absorbed.

If you live with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), it's worth noting that cherries are high in FODMAPs, a form of carbohydrate that can trigger flare-ups for some people. Those with a sensitivity to FODMAPs may need to avoid cherries and other stone fruit to help control their symptoms. If you have trouble digesting cherries, speak with a registered dietitian or gastroenterologist for individualized recommendations.

Varieties

There are several varieties of cherries that vary in color, size, and sweetness. Large and dark red Bing cherries are the most common in the United States. Other types include Royal Ann, Black Tartarian, Rainier, Stella, Chelan, and more.

The bright red cherries you see on top of ice cream sundaes are called maraschino cherries, made from a light-colored variety that has been sweetened and preserved. For maximum health benefits, choose dark-colored cherries without added sugar. Cherries can be purchased frozen, fresh, canned, jarred, or dried.

When It's Best

Frozen, dried, or preserved cherries can be purchased at any time of the year in most grocery stores, as can fresh cherries that have been imported. Cherries are generally in season during the hot summer months, and certain varieties have longer growing seasons than others. Visit your local farmer's market to find out when cherries are available in your area.

Choose fresh cherries that are free of damage or mold. Look for cherries that are shiny and firm with green stems still attached. Fresh cherries should appear plump, never shriveled.

Storage and Food Safety

Refrain from washing cherries until you're ready to eat them. Washing them too soon causes cherries to deteriorate faster. Avoid keeping cherries in direct sunlight or in warm places. Instead, store fresh cherries uncovered in the coldest part of the refrigerator where they will last for several days. Watch out for signs of deterioration and discard rotten cherries before they cause the rest of the batch to spoil.

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How to Prepare

Add cherries to Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, or ricotta cheesefor a high-protein breakfast or snack. Toss a few cherries into salads, or include them in savory dishes to add sweetness, color, and texture.

Cherries are also commonly used in pies, tarts, and other baked goods. Enjoying fresh or frozen cherries just as they are is one of the simplest ways to savor their sweetness.

Verywell Fit uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.

  1. U.S. Department of Agriculture. FoodData Central. Cherries, sweet, raw.

  2. Glycemic index of foods. Queensland Government.

  3. United States Department of Agriculture. FoodData Central. Cherries, sour, red, raw.

    (Video) Cherry Benefits: 14 Impressive Health Benefits Of Cherries

  4. United States Department of Agriculture. FoodData Central. Maraschino cherries, canned, drained.

  5. Kelley D, Adkins Y, Laugero K. A review of the health benefits of cherries. Nutrients. 2018;10(3):368. doi:10.3390%2Fnu10030368

  6. Kelley DS, Adkins Y, Laugero KD. A review of the health benefits of cherries. Nutrients. 2018;10(3). doi:10.3390/nu10030368

  7. American Institute for Cancer Research. Cherries.

  8. Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. 4 types of foods to support memory.

  9. American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology. Anaphylactic reactions to cherries, strawberries, and grapes.

  10. Poison Control National Capital Poison Center. I swallowed a cherry pit!.

  11. University of Virginia Health System. Low FODMAP diet.

  12. Utah State University Extension. Cherry varieties.

  13. Storing. The Victorian Cherry Association.

Cherry Nutrition Facts and Health Benefits (1)

By Barbie Cervoni MS, RD, CDCES, CDN
Barbie Cervoni MS, RD, CDCES, CDN, is a registered dietitian and certified diabetes care and education specialist, counseling patients with diabetes. Barbie was previously the Advanced Nutrition Coordinator for the Mount Sinai Diabetes and Cardiovascular Alliance and worked in pediatric endocrinology at The Steven and Alexandra Cohen Children's Medical Center.

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FAQs

What is the health benefits of cherry? ›

Cherries are low in calories and chock full of fiber, vitamins, minerals, nutrients, and other good-for-you ingredients. You'll get vitamins C, A, and K. Each long-stemmed fruit delivers potassium, magnesium, and calcium too. They also bring antioxidants, like beta-carotene, and the essential nutrient choline.

How many cherries should you eat a day for health benefits? ›

To reap the benefits of cherries' nutrient-rich capabilities, you may be wondering how many cherries should you eat in a day. Our experts recommend about one cup of fresh or frozen cherries and one-fourth cup for dried cherries.

Is eating cherries everyday good for you? ›

There is some evidence to suggest that regularly eating cherries or drinking cherry juice may benefit a person's heart health, boost sleep quality, and lower inflammation. People with specific conditions, such as high blood pressure or gout, may find them especially helpful.

Are cherries good for sleep? ›

Sweet cherries are high in melatonin, a sleep-inducing hormone. Consuming a glass of cherry juice before you're off to bed can reduce the severity of insomnia and increase overall sleep efficiency. A hot cup of chamomile tea relaxes you and soothes the nervous system.

Are cherries good for your kidneys? ›

Cherries have a kidney-friendly nutrient profile. One-half cup (about 9 cherries) contains 50 calories, 13 g carbohydrate, 1.6 g fiber, 170 mg potassium, 16 mg phosphorus and 0 mg sodium.

Are cherries good for your liver? ›

Are cherries good for your liver? The answer may surprise you! Studies have proven that cherries are full of polyphenols and Vitamin C, which can help in reducing inflammation across the body. These antioxidants can protect you from a variety of diseases, including nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.

Who should not eat cherries? ›

"Cherries are a natural source of salicylates, which some people may be sensitive to. Eating a lot of cherries may lead to diarrhea, gas, or bloating for those who have a salicylate sensitivity," cautions Leah Johnston, RDN, LDN, a registered dietitian at SRW.

How many cherries should you eat a day for arthritis? ›

To experience similar pain relief as these study participants, aim to either drink tart cherry juice daily or eat at least ten cherries a day. If you don't love cherries, you can opt for raspberries or blueberries, as they have been shown to have similar positive effects.

Do cherries affect blood sugar? ›

Do cherries raise your blood sugar? A. Eating cherries in moderation will not raise blood sugar because they have a chemical called anthocyanins. These chemicals increase insulin production and help the body keep blood sugar levels under control.

Are cherries good for your heart? ›

A growing body of science links cherries' red color (provided by the fruit's powerful antioxidants (anthocyanins) to heart-health benefits related to reducing inflammation, total cholesterol, and belly fat.

Is cherry Good for Diabetes? ›

If you are living with diabetes, cherries can be a healthy and tasty part of your diet, providing vitamin C, potassium, and fiber. However, based on the glycemic index of cherries, you should practice portion control when enjoying them.

Is cherry high in iron? ›

Iron-rich foods include the popular summer fruit cherry. This tasty and refreshing fruit is not only rich in iron but also a good source of vitamin C.

Are cherries good for your hair? ›

Hair Strengthening

Vitamin C in cherries helps strengthen hair follicles and prevent breakage from the roots. Hair also gets nourished and is less likely to split.

Are cherries a Superfood? ›

Cherries are a nutrient-dense superfood loaded with vitamins and minerals. Studies show cherries can help your body manage stress, improve your sleep, speed up recovery after a workout and even help balance your mood.

Which fruit is best for sleeping? ›

Kiwifruit possess numerous vitamins and minerals3, most notably vitamins C and E as well as potassium and folate. Some research has found that eating kiwi can improve sleep4. In a study, people who ate two kiwis one hour before bedtime found that they fell asleep faster, slept more, and had better sleep quality.

Do cherries help with inflammation? ›

But new research confirms cherries also are a standout among the most potent anti-inflammatory foods. Like all antioxidant-rich, colorful fruits and vegetables, cherries can help us manage chronic inflammation, a risk factor for heart disease, joint pain and other maladies.

What is the best fruit for kidneys? ›

Pineapple, cranberries, red grapes, and apples are all kidney-friendly fruits with anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Cranberries keep the urinary tract free from infection (UTI)
  • Red grapes reduce inflammation and help protect against diabetes.
  • Apples help to prevent constipation and reduce cholesterol.
5 Nov 2019

What is the best thing to drink for your kidneys? ›

Water: Water is simply the best drink you can have! Water is a zero-calorie, perfectly hydrating, cheap drink. If you are in the earlier stages of kidney disease, choosing water most of the time to quench your thirst will keep your body and kidneys functioning well.

Are cherries good for UTI? ›

If you're experiencing the burning and pain of a bladder infection, it's understandable that you'd look to natural remedies like cherry juice for UTI relief. However, there's no clinical evidence to suggest that tart cherry powder or any other cherry product can resolve bladder infections.

Are cherries good for bones? ›

Tart cherries are an excellent course of phenolic compounds and anthocyanins, and in pre-clinical studies have been shown to prevent age-related bone loss.

Which fruit is best for liver? ›

Fill your fruit basket with apples, grapes and citrus fruits like oranges and lemons, which are proven to be liver-friendly fruits. Consume grapes as it is, in the form of a grape juice or supplement your diet with grape seed extracts to increase antioxidant levels in your body and protect your liver from toxins.

Do cherries affect blood pressure? ›

Results: Seven RCTs comprising 201 participants were included. The meta-analysis showed that cherry supplementation does not lead to a significant decrease in SBP or DBP. Conclusions: Incorporating cherries into the diet has no significant effect on blood pressure.

Does cherries help arthritis? ›

Studies, which often use the concentrated juice of Montmorency cherries, have found tart cherries may relieve joint pain in people with osteoarthritis (OA) and lower the risk of flares in those with gout. In addition, recent studies suggest tart cherries may improve the quality and duration of sleep.

How many cherries should I eat at once? ›

To start, stick to one serving (1/2 cup or about 7 cherries, depending on their size), see how your gut reacts, and go from there. Take the time to measure them out, so you're not tempted to keep popping them in your mouth—Otherwise, you may risk your insides retaliating.

What fruit is not good for arthritis? ›

Citrus fruits cause inflammation

Some people believe that they should avoid citrus fruits because the acidity is inflammatory.

How many cherries is too many? ›

Cherries can prevent and treat iron deficiency anemia, but taking too many cherries can cause iron poisoning, causing dizziness, vomiting and other symptoms. It is recommended to eat about 10 cherries a day.

Are cherries good for arthritis and gout? ›

In a study of 633 participants, Boston University Medical Center researchers found that eating at least 10 cherries a day protected people with existing gout from recurrent attacks. The findings were published in 2012, in a supplement to the journal Arthritis & Rheumatism.

Which fruit is best for diabetes? ›

The Best Fruits for People With Diabetes
  • berries — Both citrus and berries are recommended as superfoods by the American Diabetes Association.
  • cherries.
  • plums.
  • grapefruit.
  • peaches.
  • apples — High fiber fruits like apples and pears help to slow a spike in blood sugar, Rose says.
  • pears.
  • kiwi.
3 Nov 2021

Which fruit is not good for diabetes? ›

Fruit is also an important source of vitamins, minerals, and fiber. However, fruit can also be high in sugar. People with diabetes must keep a watchful eye on their sugar intake to avoid blood sugar spikes.
...
These include:
  • apples.
  • apricots.
  • avocados.
  • bananas.
  • blackberries.
  • blueberries.
  • cantaloupes.
  • cherries.
29 Mar 2021

What fruit is highest in sugar? ›

List of Fruits High in Sugar
  • Litchis (Lychees) Up to 15% Sugar. Sugar per Cup. ...
  • Passion-Fruit (Granadilla) Up to 11% Sugar. Sugar per Cup. ...
  • Pomegranate. Up to 14% Sugar. Sugar per Cup. ...
  • Mangos. Up to 14% Sugar. ...
  • Cherries. Up to 13% Sugar. ...
  • Bananas. Up to 12% Sugar. ...
  • Oranges. Up to 9% Sugar. ...
  • Kiwifruit. Up to 9% Sugar.
26 Sept 2022

Do cherries clean your arteries? ›

Studies show that tart cherries lower high cholesterol and triglycerides, which can do everything from improving your weight to improving your arterial health. This also reduces your risk of stroke, heart disease, and diabetes.

Do cherries increase cholesterol? ›

Studies indicate that Montmorency tart cherries may help lower levels of cholesterol and triglycerides, reduce inflammation and improve belly fat – all factors specifically linked to heart disease risk.

Which fruit is good for heart blockage? ›

Berries. Berries include blueberries, strawberries, cranberries, raspberries, and blackberries. These fruits are associated with an impressive amount of health benefits, including their ability to reduce inflammation and improve heart health. Berries are packed with fiber, vitamins, minerals, and plant compounds.

Is cherry good for weight loss? ›

Cherries are a good source of fiber, and high-fiber diets have been linked to weight loss, per a study in the Journal of Nutrition from October 2019. Fiber has a satiating effect, helping you feel fuller for longer and preventing overeating. Additional characteristics make fresh cherries weight loss friendly.

How do you lower your blood sugar immediately? ›

When your blood sugar level gets too high — known as hyperglycemia or high blood glucose — the quickest way to reduce it is to take fast-acting insulin. Exercising is another fast, effective way to lower blood sugar. In some cases, you should go to the hospital instead of handling it at home.

Are cherries high in potassium? ›

Sweet cherries are considered a good source of dietary potassium, with approximately 260 mg of potassium for every cup of fresh cherries consumed (USDA MyPyramid nutrient data analysis program).

Are cherries good for healing? ›

Cherries Can Help Heal and Repair Wounds

Cherries contain vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, which helps our body repair wounds and build tissue. One cup of cherries (154 grams) contains 18% of the recommended daily intake of vitamin C.

Do cherries increase testosterone? ›

Berries, cherries, and pomegranates are high in flavonoid antioxidants, which may help protect testosterone-producing cells from damage and increase testosterone production ( 13 ).

Do cherries have melatonin? ›

According to agricultural research studies, sweet cherries are one of the only natural food sources of melatonin, the chemical that controls the body's internal clock to regulate sleep.

Is cherries good for face? ›

“Cherries contain anthocyanins which are a great source of antioxidants," explains board-certified dermatologist Shari Sperling, MD. "They also contain vitamins A, B, C, and E, which are great for keeping skin healthy, and they can help with pigmentation and skin rejuvenation.”

Can we apply cherry on face? ›

Cherry and Strawberry Face Pack:

Cherries have anti-ageing, skin lightening effects. Combined with strawberry, which is rich in Vitamin C, has anti-ageing benefits, and has salicylic acid too. Hence, both these fruits when combined with honey becomes a potent tonic for skin.

How long do fresh cherries last in the fridge? ›

Since cherries are best when fresh, don't hesitate to eat them fast! They should last 5-7 days in the refrigerator, but are very perishable and should be eaten quickly. If you don't plan on finishing your cherries right away, try freezing them for later or preserving them.

Which is the best fruit for brain? ›

Certain fruits such as oranges, bell peppers, guava, kiwi, tomatoes, and strawberries, contain high amounts of vitamin C. Vitamin C helps prevent brain cells from becoming damaged and supports overall brain health. In fact, a study found that vitamin C can potentially prevent Alzheimer's.

What's healthier grapes or cherries? ›

Red grapes are higher in vitamin B6 than cherries. Vitamin B6 supports the nervous system. Grapes are rich in vitamin K, which ensures blood can clot so wounds heal properly. They contain the antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin, which can help to maintain good eyesight.

Are cherries high in sugar? ›

Cherries. They're sweet, and they have the sugar to show for it: A cup of them has 18 grams. If you fill up a large bowl with them, you can lose track of how many you eat.

Are cherries good for your liver? ›

Are cherries good for your liver? The answer may surprise you! Studies have proven that cherries are full of polyphenols and Vitamin C, which can help in reducing inflammation across the body. These antioxidants can protect you from a variety of diseases, including nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.

Do cherries affect blood sugar? ›

Do cherries raise your blood sugar? A. Eating cherries in moderation will not raise blood sugar because they have a chemical called anthocyanins. These chemicals increase insulin production and help the body keep blood sugar levels under control.

Are cherries full of sugar? ›

Cherries. They're sweet, and they have the sugar to show for it: A cup of them has 18 grams. If you fill up a large bowl with them, you can lose track of how many you eat.

Is eating cherries good for your skin? ›

Cherries are a good source of vitamins A, B, C and E which all help to keep the skin radiant and healthy.

Are cherries good for bladder? ›

Cherries sharpen the mind by purifying the bowels—they're better at alleviating constipation than prunes! They cleanse the bladder, too, and help alleviate spastic bladders and bladder prolapse. Plus, cherries are one of the best endocrine-system-boosting foods, stimulating or suppressing the appetite as needed.

Are cherries good for bones? ›

Tart cherries are an excellent course of phenolic compounds and anthocyanins, and in pre-clinical studies have been shown to prevent age-related bone loss.

Are cherries good for arthritis? ›

Studies, which often use the concentrated juice of Montmorency cherries, have found tart cherries may relieve joint pain in people with osteoarthritis (OA) and lower the risk of flares in those with gout. In addition, recent studies suggest tart cherries may improve the quality and duration of sleep.

Are cherries good for cholesterol? ›

A growing body of science links cherries' red color (provided by the fruit's powerful antioxidants (anthocyanins) to heart-health benefits related to reducing inflammation, total cholesterol, and belly fat.

Which fruit is best for diabetes? ›

The Best Fruits for People With Diabetes
  • berries — Both citrus and berries are recommended as superfoods by the American Diabetes Association.
  • cherries.
  • plums.
  • grapefruit.
  • peaches.
  • apples — High fiber fruits like apples and pears help to slow a spike in blood sugar, Rose says.
  • pears.
  • kiwi.
3 Nov 2021

Which fruit is lowest in sugar? ›

Learn which fruits are lowest in sugar content so you can satisfy your sweet tooth without breaking the sugar bank.
  1. Lemons (and limes) High in vitamin C, lemons and their lime green counterparts are fairly sour fruits. ...
  2. Raspberries. ...
  3. Strawberries. ...
  4. Blackberries. ...
  5. Kiwis. ...
  6. Grapefruit. ...
  7. Avocado. ...
  8. Watermelon.

Are cherries good for wrinkles? ›

Some of the most important antioxidants in cherries might be the anthocyanins that are said to prevent from wrinkles.

Are cherries anti aging? ›

U.S. Montmorency tart cherries contain powerful antioxidants called anthocyanins - which provide their distinctive red color. Scientific studies suggest that these disease-fighting pigments possess antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-aging and anti-carcinogenic properties.

Why should you eat cherries before bed? ›

Cherries, particularly tart cherries, can come to your rescue if you're struggling from sleep disorders. Sweet cherries are high in melatonin, a sleep-inducing hormone. Consuming a glass of cherry juice before you're off to bed can reduce the severity of insomnia and increase overall sleep efficiency.

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