Albaluk, Alubalu, Cerasus vulgaris, Cerezo Acido, Cerise, Cerise à Tarte, Cerise Acide, Cerise Acide Rouge, Cerise Aigre, Cerise de Montmorency, Cerise Rouge, Cerisier Acide, Cerisier Aigre, Dwarf Cherry, English Morello, Gilas, Ginjeira, Griotte de Champagne, Griottier, Griottier Acide, Guinda, Guinda Acida, Guindo, Montmorency Cherry, Morello Cherry, Olchi, Pie Cherry, Prunus cerasus, Prunus vulgaris, Red Cherry, Red Sour Cherry, Richmond, Sauerkirsche, Sauerkirschenbaum, Tart Cherry.<br/><br/>


Overview Information

Sour cherry is a fruit. The fruit and stem of the sour cherry are used to make medicine and food. Of the more than 270 varieties of sour cherry, only a few are important commercially. The Montmorency sour cherry is the most popular sour cherry grown in the US.

Sour cherry is used for osteoarthritis, muscle pain, fibromyalgia, muscle soreness after exercise, diabetes, high blood pressure, gout, and insomnia. It is also used to improve exercise performance, increase urine production, and help digestion.

In foods, sour cherries are eaten as a food or flavoring.

In manufacturing, sour cherry is used to make cherry syrup for drugs with an unpleasant taste.

How does it work?

Sour cherry fruit contains ingredients that are thought to reduce inflammation and serve as antioxidants. It also contains melatonin which helps to regulate sleep patterns.


Uses & Effectiveness?

Insufficient Evidence for

  • Athletic performance. Early research shows that taking sour cherry concentrate can improve jumping, agility, and some aspects of performance in trained athletes taking part in intensive exercise programs.
  • Muscle soreness caused by exercise. Some research shows that drinking sour cherry juice or taking a sour cherry supplement for 7 days before a long-distance race reduces muscle soreness after the race. Also, taking a sour cherry concentrate or a sour cherry supplement seems to reduce muscle soreness caused by weightlifting. But not all sour cherry products seem to be beneficial. Drinking a blend of sour cherry and apple juice doesn't seem to reduce soreness after exercise in runners or weight lifters.
  • Airway infections caused by exercise. Early research shows that drinking a juice blended from sour cherry and apple juice before and after running a marathon decreases symptoms such as cough, sore throat, congestion, and sneezing after the race.
  • Fibromyalgia. Early research shows that taking a sour cherry concentrate twice daily for 14 days does not improve pain or muscle strength in women with fibromyalgia who follow an exercise program.
  • High blood pressure. Early research shows that taking a sour cherry concentrate decreases systolic blood pressure (the top blood pressure number) but not diastolic blood pressure (the bottom number) for 1-3 hours after it is taken. It's not known if this product decreases blood pressure when taken long-term in people who have high blood pressure. It doesn't appear to lower blood pressure in people who do not have high blood pressure.
  • Insomnia. Some early research shows that taking a sour cherry juice concentrate, which contains a small amount of melatonin, improves sleep time when used for 1 week. Other early research shows that drinking a blend of sour cherry and apple juice daily for 14 days improves the severity of insomnia and the amount of time awake after falling asleep in older people with long-term insomnia. But this product does not appear to help decrease the amount of time it takes to actually fall asleep in these people.
  • Osteoarthritis. Some early research shows that drinking a blend of sour cherry and apple juice twice daily for 6 weeks does not improve arthritis symptoms or the need for rescue pain medicine in people with osteoarthritis.
  • Gout.
  • Improving digestion.
  • Increasing urination.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate sour cherry for these uses.

Side Effects

Side Effects & Safety

When taken by mouth: The fruit of the sour cherry is LIKELY SAFE for most adults when eaten as food or used as medicine. There isn't enough information to know if sour cherry stems or dietary supplements containing the sour cherry stems are safe. Some people have reported loose stools after taking sour cherry products.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: The fruit of the sour cherry is LIKELY SAFE for pregnant or breast-feeding women when eaten in normal food amounts. However, there isn't enough information to know if medicinal amounts of sour cherry fruit, sour cherry stems, or dietary supplements containing the sour cherry stems are safe. Stay on the safe side and stick to sour cherry fruit in food amounts.

Cherry allergy: People who are allergic to cherry should avoid taking sour cherry products.



We currently have no information for SOUR CHERRY Interactions.



The appropriate dose of sour cherry depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for sour cherry. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

View References


  • Bajerska J, Mildner-Szkudlarz S, Gornas P, Seglina D. The effects of muffins enriched with sour cherry pomace on acceptability, glycemic response, satiety and energy intake: a randomized crossover trial. J Sci Food Agric 2016;96(7):2486-93. View abstract.
  • Bak I, Czompa A, Czepanyi E, et al. Evaluation of systemic and dermal toxicity and dermal photoprotection by sour cherry kernels. Phytother Res 2011;25(11):1714-20. View abstract.
  • Bell PG, Gaze DC, Davison GW, et al. Montmorency tart cherry (Prunus cerasus L.) concentrate lowers uric acid, independent of plasma cyaniding-3-O-glucosiderutinoside. J Funct Foods 2014;11:82-90.
  • Bell PG, Stevenson E, Davison GW, Howatson G. The effects of Montmorency tart cherry concentrate supplementation on recovery following prolonged, intermittent exercise. Nutrients 2016;8(7):441. View abstract.
  • Bonerz D, Wurth K, Dietrich H, et al. Analytical characterization and the impact of ageing on anthocyanin composition and degradation in juices from five sour cherry cultivars. Eur Food Res Technol 2007;224(3):355-64.
  • Bowtell JL, Sumners DP, Dyer A, et al. Montmorency cherry juice reduces muscle damage caused by intensive strength exercise. Med Sci Sports Exerc 2011;43(8):1544-51. View abstract.
  • Bruneton J. Pharmacognosy Phytochemistry Medicinal Plants. 2nd ed. Paris, FR: Lavoisier, 1999:142.
  • Burkhardt S, Tan DX, Manchester LC, et al. Detection and quantification of the antioxidant melatonin in Montmorency and Balaton tart cherries (Prunus cerasus). J Agric Food Chem 2001;49:4898-902. View abstract.
  • Connolly DA, McHugh MP, Padilla-Zakour OI, et al. Efficacy of a tart cherry juice blend in preventing the symptoms of muscle damage. Br J Sports Med 2006;40(8):679-83. View abstract.
  • Csiki Z, Papp-Bata A, Czompa A, et al. Orally delivered sour cherry seed extract (SCSE) affects cardiovascular and hematological parameters in humans. Phytother Res 2015;29(3):444-9. View abstract.
  • Czompa A, Gyongyosi A, Czegledi A, et al. Cardioprotection afforded by sour cherry seed kernel: the role of heme oxygenase-1. J Cardiovasc Pharmacol 2014;64(5):412-9. View abstract.
  • Dimitriou L, Hill JA, Jehnali A, et al. Influence of a Montmorency cherry juice blend on indices of exercise-induced stress and upper respiratory tract symptoms following marathon running-a pilot investigation. J Int Soc Sports Nutr 2015;12:22. View abstract.
  • Elliot DL, Kuehl KS, Jones KD, Dulacki K. Using an eccentric exercise-testing protocol to assess the beneficial effects of tart cherry juice in fibromyalgia patients. Integ Med 2010;9(6):25-9.
  • Homoki J, Gyémánt G, Balogh P, et al. Sour cherry extract inhibits human salivary a-amylase and growth of Streptococcus mutans (a pilot clinical study). Food Funct. 2018;9(7):4008-4016. View abstract.
  • Howatson G, Bell PG, Tallent J, et al. Effect of tart cherry juice (Prunus cerasus) on melatonin levels and enhanced sleep quality. Eur J Nutr 2011;51:909-16. View abstract.
  • Howatson G, McHugh MP, Hill JA, et al. Influence of tart cherry juice on indices of recovery following marathon training. Scand J Med Sci Sports 2010;20(6):843-52. View abstract.
  • Juhasz B, Kertesz A, Balla J, et al. Cardioprotective effects of sour cherry seed extract (SCSE) on the hypercholesterolemic rabbit heart. Curr Pharm Des 2013;19(39):6896-905. View abstract.
  • Kang SY, Seeram NP, Nair MG, Bourquin LD. Tart cherry anthocyanins inhibit tumor development in Apc(Min) mice and reduce proliferation of human colonic cancer cells. Cancer Lett 2003;194(1):13-9. View abstract.
  • Keane KM, Bailey SJ, Vanhatalo A, Jones AM, Howatson G. Effects of Montmorency tart cherry (L. Prunus Cerasus) consumption on nitric oxide biomarkers and exercise performance. Scand J Med Sci Sports. 2018;28(7):1746-1756. View abstract.
  • Keane KM, Bell PG, Lodge JK, et al. Phytochemical uptake following human consumption of Montmorency tart cherry (L. Prunus cerasus) and influence of phenolic acids on vascular smooth muscle cells in vitro. Eur J Nutr 2016;55(4):1695-705. View abstract.
  • Keane KM, George TW, Constantinou CL, et al. Effects of Montmorency tart cherry (Prunus cerasus L.) consumption on vascular function in men with early hypertension. Am J Clin Nutr 2016;103(6):1531-9. View abstract.
  • Kim DO, Padilla-Zakour OI. Jam processing effect on phenolics and antioxidant capacity in anthocyanin-rich fruits: cherry, plum, and raspberry. J Food Sci 2004;69(9):S395-400.
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  • Kuehl KS, Perrier ET, Elliot DL, Chesnutt JC. Efficacy of tart cherry juice in reducing muscle pain during running: a randomized controlled trial. J Int Soc Sports Nutr 2010;7:17. View abstract.
  • Levers K, Dalton R, Galvan E, et al. Effects of powdered Montmorency tart cherry supplementation on acute bout of intense lower body strength exercise in resistance trained males. J Int Soc Sports Nutr 2015;12:41. View abstract.
  • Levers K, Dalton R, Galvan E, et al. Effects of powdered Montmorency tart cherry supplementation on acute endurance exercise performance in aerobically trained individuals. J Int Soc Sports Nutr 2016;13:22. View abstract.
  • Lynn A, Mathew S, Moore CT, et al. Effect of a tart cherry juice supplement on arterial stiffness and inflammation in healthy adults: a randomised controlled trial. Plant Foods Hum Nutr 2014;69(2):122-7. View abstract.
  • McCune LM, Kubota C, Stendell-Hollis NR, Thomson CA. Cherries and health: a review. Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr 2011;51(1):1-12. View abstract.
  • Mulabagal V, Lang GA, DeWitt DL, et al. Anthocyanin content, lipid peroxidation and cyclooxygenase enzyme inhibitory activities of sweet and sour cherries. J Agric Food Chem 2009;57(4):1239-46. View abstract.
  • National Genetics Resources Program. The Germplasm Resources Information Network. Available at: (Accessed 24 February 2000).
  • Ou B, Bosak KN, Bricker PR, et al. Processed tart cherry products-comparative phytochemical content, in vitro antioxidant capacity and in vitro anti-inflammatory activity. J Food Sci 2012;77(5):H105-12. View abstract.
  • Pigeon WR, Carr M, Gorman C, Perlis ML. Effects of a tart cherry juice beverage on the sleep of older adults with insomnia: a pilot study. J Med Food 2010;13:579-83. View abstract.
  • Schumacher HR, Pullman-Mooar S, Gupta SR, et al. Randomized double-blind crossover study of the efficacy of a tart cherry juice blend in treatment of osteoarthritis (OA) of the knee. Osteoarthritis Cartilage 2013;21(8):1035-41. View abstract.
  • Seeram NP, Momin RA, Nair MG, Bourquin LD. Cyclooxygenase inhibitory and antioxidant cyaniding glycosides in cherries and berries. Phytomedicine 2001;8(5):632-9. View abstract.
  • Seymour EM, Lewis SK, Urcuyo-Llanes DE, et al. Regular tart cherry intake alters abdominal adiposity, adipose gene transcription, and inflammation in obesity-prone rats fed a high fat diet. J Med Food 2009;12(5):935-42. View abstract.
  • Seymour EM, Singer AA, Kirakosyan A, et al. Altered hyperlipidemia, hepatic steatosis, and hepatic peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors in rats with intake of tart cherry. J Med Food 2008;11(2):252-9. View abstract.
  • Seymour EM, Warber SM, Kirakosyan A, et al. Anthocyanin pharmacokinetics and dose-dependent plasma antioxidant pharmacodynamics following whole tart cherry intake in healthy humans. J Funct Food 2014;11:509-16.
  • Szabo ME, Gallyas E, Bak I, et al. Heme oxygenase-1-related carbon monoxide and flavonoids in ischemic/reperfused rat retina. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci 2004;45(10):3727-32. View abstract.
  • Tall JM, Seeram EM, Zhao C, et al. Tart cherry anthocyanins suppress inflammation-induced pain behavior in rat. Behav Brain Res 2004;153(1):181-8. View abstract.
  • Total anthocyanins and total phenolics of fresh and processed cherries and their antioxidant properties. J Food Sci 2004;69(1):FCT67-72.
  • Traustadottir T, Davies SS, Stock AA, et al. Tart cherry juice decreases oxidative stress in healthy older men and women. J Nutr 2009;139(10):1896-900. View abstract.
  • Wang H, Nair MG, Strasburg GM, et al. Novel antioxidant compounds from tart cherries (Prunus cerasus). J Nat Prod 1999;62:86-8. View abstract.
  • Wang H, Nair MG, Strasburg GM, et al. Novel antioxidant compounds from tart cherries (Prunus cerasus). J Nat Prod 1999;62(1):86-8. View abstract.

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CONDITIONS OF USE AND IMPORTANT INFORMATION: This information is meant to supplement, not replace advice from your doctor or healthcare provider and is not meant to cover all possible uses, precautions, interactions or adverse effects. This information may not fit your specific health circumstances. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your doctor or other qualified health care provider because of something you have read on WebMD. You should always speak with your doctor or health care professional before you start, stop, or change any prescribed part of your health care plan or treatment and to determine what course of therapy is right for you.

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© Therapeutic Research Faculty 2018.