What is Acai?
The acai berry is an inch-long, reddish-purple fruit. It comes from the acai palm tree, which is native to Central and South America.
Nutrients & Applications:
Acai is known to have very high antioxidant properties. During a recent vitro test, the well known antioxidant phenols and anthocyanin chemicals were extracted from the fruit, showing that Acai has the ability to support healthy and normal cellular tissue growth. The ORAC value of Acai is one of the highest in the world.
In Brazil, Acai is primarily being used as an astringent and blood cleanser. The dark purple color of the fruit is due to the polyphenolic compounds. The compound anthocyanin is responsible for creating red to purple colors in fruits like blackberries, raspberries and grapes. Foods and fruits, which contain high levels of anthocyanin are known to be potent antioxidants and are being used widely in anti-aging and to support healthy and normal cellular tissue growth. Further scientific studies with Acai are being conducted and should soon reveal additional data.
12 Health Benefits of Acai Berries:
There are numerous healthy berries that would be a great addition to your diet. The acai berry is one of the healthiest berries you will ever find.
Acai is an indigenous berry commonly found in the rain forests of the Amazon. This antioxidant-rich fruit has been heralded for centuries as a healing, immune-stimulating, energy-boosting fruit. An exotic relative of the blueberry and cranberry, research has shown that this antioxidant-rich berry may be able to support in the prevention of diseases associated with oxidative damage, not to mention many other health benefits.
1. Heart Health
Similar to red wine, research shows that acai berries are extremely high in anthocyanins, a form of plant antioxidant associated with the ability to lower cholesterol levels in the blood stream. They are also rich in plant sterols that provide cardio-protective benefits to our cells. It does this by preventing blood clots, improving overall blood circulation, and relaxing the blood vessels.
2. Resistant to Harmful Organisms
Scientists from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro have shown that consuming acai extract may help fight harmful organisms. However, I recommend Oregano Oil for this task.
3. Aids in Weight Loss
Known by nutritionists as a super-food, acai may help us not only lose weight, but maintain a healthy weight. One interesting study from the National Institutes of Aging found that pulp from the acai berry had the ability to reduce the negative effects of a high-fat diet in laboratory studies on flies.
4. Promotes Skin Health
Currently, many modern beauty products are carrying acai oil, again due to the oil’s high antioxidant content. What is more, acai oil is a great natural alternative to chemical based skin-care products that harm the skin in the long-run. Taken
internally, the berries can also give your skin a healthier glow. In fact,
Brazilians have been eating acai berries for centuries to treat skin conditions.
5. Helps with Digestive Upset
Taking acai may also aid in keeping our digestive system clean and in optimal function. The berries have powerful detoxification capacities in the human body and are a well-known traditional source of dietary fiber. Of course, there are many other high fiber foods that can do the same thing, including many other types of berries.
6. Reduces Irritation
Acai berries contain properties may prevent the typical irritation associated with respiratory distress.
7. Improved Cellular Health
On a general level, the anthocyanins found in acai play a role in our cellular protection system, helping to keep cells strong against the invasion of free radicals.
8. May Help Fight Cancer
Acai is very high in Vitamin C and ellagic acid, an immune-system-boosting combination that has been shown to suppress the growth of cancer. One study published in the Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry found that polyphenolic compounds extracted from acai reduced cancer cell proliferation by 56-86%. It is thought that acai’s phytochemcials can stop the process of carcinogenesis on a molecular level, killing off tumorous cells before they multiply. Acai berries are not a cure for cancer; but hopefully more research will examine their benefits and potential role in the fight.
9. Anti-Aging Effects
Extremely high in many forms of plant phytochemicals (antioxidants), acai berries may contribute to an ability to slow or reverse typical processes of aging related to oxidative damage. In fact, the berries are one of the planets highest sources of antioxidants, with one berry holding ten times the amount of antioxidants as grapes, and two times the amount of blueberries.
10. Energy Boost
Due its overall health benefits, taking acai extract can lead to an increased overall level of energy and stamina, and may aid to combat fatigue and exhaustion. Whenever you need a boost, simply eat a handful of berries and you will be ready to go in no time!
11. Better Sex
This famous red berry has also been linked to overall increased blood circulation in the human body, a phenomenon that may contribute to a boost in sex drive, especially for men.
12. Improves Mental Function
Preliminary research studies show that acai may prevent mental imbalance in menopausal women.
- Dr. Edward F. Group III, DC, ND, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM
A Great Smoothie Recipe
Acai Green Smoothie Recipe with Blueberries
1 tsp Organic acai
3 cups baby spinach
Handful of blueberries
1 cup almond milk
1 scoop of vanilla protein powder (your choice)
Couple of ice cubes
Blend in the blender and enjoy