Flight attendants, pilots, and frequent fliers often suffer from jet lag. I know I do. What you probably already know is jet lag can be cured by taking melatonin. What you may not know is tart cherries contain a significant amount of melatonin. That’s right, those little red balls of deliciousness don’t just taste good, they can actually help you get a good night’s sleep naturally! And that’s not all. Cherries have also been credited with soothing arthritis, slowing the aging process, and helping depression. They even contain queritrin, a potent anticancer agent.
WAIT! Before you run off to buy this miracle fruit, leave a comment below and you’ll be entered to win a “red hot” traveler’s kit! On Monday, July 19, 2010, I’ll announce the lucky winner.
1. Dried cherries
2. A Kashmere red pillow case-socks-shawl travel set
3. A Tory Burch Cosmetic Case
4. Cherry Marketing Institute tote bag
According to the Cherry Marketing Institute: Cherries, a super fruit known for their powerful antioxidant and phytonutrient profile, are one of the few known, researched food sources of melatonin, a potent antioxidant produced naturally by the body to help regulate biorhythm and natural sleep patterns.
Recent research conducted by Russel J. Reiter, Ph.D, a nutrition researcher at the University of Texas Health Science Center and one of the world’s leading authorities on melatonin, found that a handful of cherries contain more melatonin than what is normally found in the blood, helping your body get in sync with the new time zone while you travel. And cherries are believed to be one of the most concentrated sources of melatonin – bananas, corn and oats supply melatonin but in considerably smaller amounts.
Research suggests melatonin works best when consumed one hour prior to your desired sleep time on the plane and for three or more consecutive evenings after your arrival, depending on the number of time zones crossed. Cherries are available year-round as dried and frozen cherries, and cherry juice, so they’re easy to incorporate into your daily diet and travel agenda. Specifically, dried cherries are a convenient , portable and tasty way to get a melatonin boost on the plane.
UPDATE: Congratulations Alicia Collins, you’re the winner!