Tart Cherry Supplementation and Recovery From Strenuous Exercise: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

in International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism
View More View Less
  • 1 St. Mary’s University
  • 2 Northumbria University
  • 3 North West University
Restricted access

Purchase article

USD  $24.95

Student 1 year online subscription

USD  $88.00

1 year online subscription

USD  $118.00

Student 2 year online subscription

USD  $168.00

2 year online subscription

USD  $224.00

The aim of this study was to determine the efficacy of tart cherry (TC) supplementation on recovery following strenuous exercise. A systematic review and meta-analysis were conducted using studies investigating TC supplementation on measures of muscle soreness, muscular strength, muscular power, creatine kinase, C-reactive protein, Interleukin-6, and tumor necrosis factor alpha. A literature search ending in July 2020 was conducted in three databases (SPORTDiscus, Web of Science, and PubMed). Data from 14 studies were extracted and pooled for analysis. Tart cherry supplementation had a small beneficial effect in reducing muscle soreness (effect size [ES] = −0.44, 95% confidence interval [CI] [−0.87, −0.02]). A moderate beneficial effect was observed for recovery of muscular strength (ES = −0.78, 95% CI [−1.11, −0.46]). A moderate effect was observed for muscular power (ES = −0.53, 95% CI [−0.77, −0.29]); a further subgroup analysis on this variable indicated a large effect of TC supplementation on recovery of jump height (ES = −0.82, 95% CI [−1.18, −0.45]) and a small significant effect of supplementation on sprint time (ES = −0.32, 95% CI [−0.60, −0.04]). A small effect was observed for both C-reactive protein (ES = −0.46, 95% CI [−0.93, −0.00]) and Interleukin-6 (ES = −0.35, 95% CI [−0.68, −0.02]. No significant effects were observed for creatine kinase and tumor necrosis factor alpha. These results indicate that the consumption of a TC supplement can aid aspects of recovery from strenuous exercise.

Hill and Quinlan are with the Faculty of Sport, Health and Applied Science, St. Mary’s University, Twickenham, United Kingdom. Keane and Howatson are with the Department of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation, Faculty of Health and Life of Sciences, Northumbria University, Newcastle Upon Tyne, United Kingdom. Howatson is also with Water Research Group, School of Biological Sciences, North West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa.

Hill (jessica.hill@stmarys.ac.uk) is corresponding author.
  • Abbott, W., Brashill, C., Brett, A., & Clifford, T. (2019). Tart cherry juice: No effect on muscle function loss or muscle soreness in professional soccer players after a match. International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance, 15(2), 249254. PubMed ID: 31188696 doi:10.1123/ijspp.2019-0221

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Aoi, W., Naito, Y., Takanami, Y., Kawai, Y., Sakuma, K., Ichikawa, H., … Yoshikawa, T. (2004). Oxidative stress and delayed-Onset muscle damage after exercise. Free Radical Biology & Medicine, 37(4), 480487. PubMed ID: 15256219 doi:10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2004.05.008

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Batterham, A.M., & Hopkins, W. (2006). Making meaningful inferences about magnitudes. International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance, 1(1), 5057. doi:10.1123/ijspp.1.1.50

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Beals, K., Allison, K.F., Darnell, M., Lovalekar, M., Baker, R., Nieman, D.C., … Lephart, S.M. (2017). The effects of a tart cherry beverage on reducing exercise-induced muscle soreness. Isokinetics and Exercise Science, 25(1), 5363. doi:10.3233/IES-160645

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Bell, P.G., Stevenson, E.J, Davison, G., & Howatson, G. (2016). The effects of montmorency tart cherry concentrate supplementation on recovery following prolonged, intermittent exercise. Nutrients, 8(7), 441. doi:10.3390/nu8070441

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Bell, P.G., Walshe, I.H., Davison, G.W., Stevenson, E.J., & Howatson, G. (2014a). Montmorency cherries reduce the oxidative stress and inflammatory responses to repeated days high-intensity stochastic cycling. Nutrients, 6(2), 829843. doi:10.3390/nu6020829

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Bell, P.G., Walshe, I.H., Davison, G.W., Stevenson, E.J., & Howatson, G. (2014b). Recovery facilitation with Montmorency cherries following high-intensity, metabolically challenging exercise. Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism, 40(4), 414423. doi:10.1139/apnm-2014-0244

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Betteridge, D.J. (2000). What is oxidative stress? Metabolism, 49(2), 38. doi:10.1016/S0026-0495(00)80077-3

  • Bongiovanni, T., Genovesi, F., Nemmer, M., Carling, C., Alberti, G., & Howatson, G. (2020). Nutritional interventions for reducing the signs and symptoms of exercise-induced muscle damage and accelerate recovery in athletes: current knowledge, practical application and future perspectives. European Journal of Applied Physiology, 120(9), 19651996. PubMed ID: 32661771 doi:10.1007/s00421-020-04432-3.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Bowtell, J.L., Sumners, D.P., Dyer, A., Fox, P., & Mileva, K.N. (2011). Montmorency cherry juice reduces muscle damage caused by intensive strength exercise. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 43(8), 15441551. PubMed ID: 21233776 doi:10.1249/MSS.0b013e31820e5adc.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Brancaccio, P., Maffulli, N., & Limongelli, F.M. (2007). Creatine kinase monitoring in sport medicine. British Medical Bulletin, 81(1), 209230. doi:10.1093/bmb/ldm014

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Brown, M.A., Stevenson, E.J., & Howatson, G. (2018). Montmorency tart cherry (Prunus cerasus L.) supplementation accelerates recovery from exercise-induced muscle damage in females. European Journal of Sport Science, 19(1), 95102. PubMed ID: 30058460 doi:10.1080/17461391.2018.1502360

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Clarkson, P.M., & Hubal, M.J. (2002). Exercise-induced muscle damage in humans. American Journal of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, 81(Suppl.), S52S69. doi:10.1097/00002060-200211001-00007

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Clarkson, P.M., & Sayers, S.P. (1999). Etiology of exercise-induced muscle damage. Canadian Journal of Applied Physiology, 24(3), 234248. PubMed ID: 10364418 doi:10.1139/h99-020

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Connolly, D.A., McHugh, M.P., Padilla-Zakour, O.I., Carlson, L., & Sayers, S.P. (2006). Efficacy of a tart cherry juice blend in preventing the symptoms of muscle damage. British Journal of Sports Medicine, 40(8), 679683. PubMed ID: 16790484 doi:10.1136/bjsm.2005.025429

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Dimitriou, L., Hill, J.A., Jehnali, A., Dunbar, J., Brouner, J., McHugh, M.P., & Howatson, G. (2015). Influence of a montmorency cherry juice blend on indices of exercise-induced stress and upper respiratory tract symptoms following marathon running—A pilot investigation. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, 12(1), 22. doi:10.1186/s12970-015-0085-8

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Halliwell, B., & Chirico, S. (1993). Lipid peroxidation: Its mechanism, measurement, and significance. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 57(5), 715S725S. PubMed ID: 8475889 doi:10.1093/ajcn/57.5.715S

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Higgins, J.P.T., & Altman, D.G. (2008). Assessing the risk of bias in included studies. In: J.P.T. Higgins & S. Green (Eds.), Cochrane handbook for systematic reviews of interventions. Chichester, UK: Wiley Blackwell.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Higgins, J.P.T., & Green, S. (2011). Cochrane handbook for systematic reviews of interventions. Chichester, UK: Wiley Blackwell.

  • Howatson, G., McHugh, M.P., Hill, J.A., Brouner, J., Jewell, A.P., Van Someren, K., & Howatson, S.A. (2010). Influence of tart cherry juice on indices of recovery following marathon running. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports, 20(6), 843852. PubMed ID: 19883392 doi:10.1111/j.1600-0838.2009.01005.x

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Howatson, G., & Van Someren, K.A. (2008). The prevention and treatment of exercise-induced muscle damage. Sports Medicine, 38(6), 483503. PubMed ID: 18489195 doi:10.2165/00007256-200838060-00004

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Howatson, G., Van Someren, K., & Hortobagyi, T. (2007). Repeated bout effect after maximal eccentric exercise. International Journal of Sports Medicine, 28(7), 557563. PubMed ID: 17373600 doi:10.1055/s-2007-964866

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kastello, G.M., Bretl, M.C., Clark, E.R., Delvaux, C.L., Hoeppner, J.D., McNea, L.P., … Strauss, J.D. (2014). The effect of cherry supplementation on Exercise induced oxidative stress. International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition, 1(1), 2026. doi:10.15436/2377-0619.14.007

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Keane, K.M., Bailey, S.J., Vanhatalo, A., Jones, A.M., & Howatson, G. (2018). Effects of Montmorency tart cherry (L. Prunus Cerasus) consumption on nitric oxide biomarkers and exercise performance. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports, 28(7), 17461756. doi:10.1111/sms.13088

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kuehl, K.S., Perrier, E.T., Elliot, D.L., & Chesnutt, J.C. (2010). Efficacy of tart cherry juice in reducing muscle pain during running: a randomized controlled trial. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, 7(1), 17. doi:10.1186/1550-2783-7-17

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kupusarevic, J., McShane, K., & Clifford, T. (2019). Cherry gel supplementation does not attenuate subjective muscle soreness or alter wellbeing following a match in a team of professional rugby union players: a pilot study. Sports, 7(4), 84. doi:10.3390/sports7040084

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Lamb, K.L., Ranchordas, M.K., Johnson, E., Denning, J., Downing, F., & Lynn, A. (2019). No effect of tart cherry juice or pomegranate juice on recovery from exercise-induced muscle damage in non-resistance trained men. Nutrients, 11(7), 1593. doi:10.3390/nu11071593

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Lanier, A.B. (2003). Use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs following exercise-induced muscle injury. Sports Medicine, 33(3), 177186. doi:10.2165/00007256-200333030-00002

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Levers, K., Dalton, R., Galvan, E., Goodenough, C., O’Connor, A., Simbo, A., … Kreider, R. (2015). Effects of powdered Montmorency tart cherry supplementation on an acute bout of intense lower body strength exercise in resistance trained males. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, 12(1), 41. doi:10.1186/s12970-015-0102-y

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Levers, K., Dalton, R., Galvan, E., O’Connor, A., Goodenough, C., Simbo, S., … Kreider, R.B. (2016). Effects of powdered Montmorency tart cherry supplementation on acute endurance exercise performance in aerobically trained individuals. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, 13(1), 22. doi:10.1186/s12970-016-0133-z

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Liberati, A., Altman, D.G., Tetzlaff, J., Mulrow, C., Gøtzsche, P.C., Ioannidis, J.P.A., … Moher, D. (2009). The PRISMA statement for reporting systematic reviews and meta-analyses of studies that evaluate health care interventions: explanation and elaboration. Annals of Internal Medicine, 151(4), 94. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-151-4-200908180-00136

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Lowe, D.A., Warren, G.L., Ingalls, C.P., Boorstein, D.B., & Armstrong, R.B. (1995). Muscle function and protein metabolism after initiation of eccentric contraction-induced injury. Journal of Applied Physiology, 79(4), 12601270. PubMed ID: 8567571 doi:10.1152/jappl.1995.79.4.1260

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Marzocchella, L., Fantini, M., Benvenuto, M., Masuelli, L., Tresoldi, I., Modesti, A., & Bei, R. (2011). Dietary flavonoids: molecular mechanisms of action as anti-inflammatory agents. Recent Patents on Inflammation & Allergy Drug Discovery, 5(3), 200220. PubMed ID: 21827399 doi:10.2174/187221311797264937

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • McCormick, R., Peeling, P., Binnie, M., Dawson, B., & Sim, M. (2016). Effect of tart cherry juice on recovery and next day performance in well-trained Water Polo players. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 13(1), 41.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Quinlan, R., & Hill, J. (2019). The efficacy of tart cherry juice in aiding recovery following intermittent exercise. International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance, 15(3), 368374. PubMed ID: 31614329 doi:10.1123/ijspp.2019-0101

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Sonkodi, B., Berkes, I., & Koltai, E. (2020). Have we looked in the wrong direction for more than 100 years? delayed onset muscle soreness is, in fact, neural microdamage rather than muscle damage. Antioxidants, 9(3), 212. doi:10.3390/antiox9030212

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Toumi, H., & Best, T.M. (2003). The inflammatory response: friend or enemy for muscle injury? British Journal of Sports Medicine, 37(4), 284286. PubMed ID: 12893707 doi:10.1136/bjsm.37.4.284

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Vitale, K.C., Hueglin, S., & Broad, E. (2017). Tart cherry juice in athletes: A literature review and commentary. Current Sports Medicine Reports, 16(4), 230239. PubMed ID: 28696985 doi:10.1249/JSR.0000000000000385

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 23 23 23
Full Text Views 3 3 3
PDF Downloads 1 1 1