Well 2 weeks zoomed by, and I’m back to report on the Tart Cherry Sleep Challenge.
To recap, I committed to a 14-day sleep challenge. Tart cherries have been shown to provide a natural source of melatonin. In a world where sleep issues are so prevalent and getting a good night’s rest has never been more important, a natural sleep aid sounds like a good choice to make.
Turns out not only do tart cherries benefit sleep but there are several studies that show other benefits as well. Read about them on choosecherries.
For this challenge, I drank a glass of tart cherry juice twice a day, in the morning and before bed. Both juice and a concentrate were available choices. I started drinking the juice but within days, switched to using the concentrate.
Why? The juice is much sweeter than the concentrate, but I liked the ability to dilute the concentrate to my own taste. Additionally (and this does matter to some people) – an 8oz glass of juice is 140 calories. Two tablespoons of concentrate are mixed with a glass of water for the other selection – at a total of 70 calories.
I could also imagine mixing the concentrate into a vanilla yogurt or oatmeal or making a smoothie.
Sleep quality was measured using a Fitbit Flex (in a nice cherry red). The fitbit determines by your movements how often you are awakened during the night. So, sharing my “stats” here you can see how I did.
By the way there’s some things no sleep aid in the world can prevent – kids who need you in the middle of the night or a phone receiving multiple texts that wake you up – you can probably figure out those days.
Overall, it felt like I was getting better rest. I have a habit of waking up in the middle of the night and not being able to go back to sleep for hours. While I was drinking the tart cherry juice, those times I did wake up, I still felt drowsy and was able to drift back to sleep.
When the challenge ended a week ago, I stopped drinking tart cherry juice to compare sleep. Already I’ve had a night of insomnia and decided I’m going back to drinking the tart cherry juice before bed. There are also other ways to enjoy tart cherries. They are available in a dried form much like raisins and cranberries and can be used in delicious recipes. For example this salad…
For example this salad, which will be perfect on my Thanksgiving table!
Now the fun part – are you ready to win? I’ve got an amazing prize pack you can win. Look at all these goodies! Worth $550, you’ll be ready to “go red before bed” and I’d love to hear about your tart cherry experiences.
Good Luck and Good Sleep!