Acai berry( pronounced as “ah-sigh-ee”) is among the top listed superfood on earth.
It is grown in Amazon Rainforest and among the most nutritious food.
It has 10 times more antioxidants than any other food. Along with high antioxidant, it contains fiber and healthy fats, thus it becomes a special food.
100 g of whole unsweetened acai berry contains. (1)
- Calorie – 70-80%
- Fat (mostly monounsaturated) – 5-6g
- Fiber – 3-4g
- Protein – 1-2g
- Vitamin A – 15 percent DV
- Manganese – 130 percent DV
Along with it contain trace elements like thiamine, chromium, copper, iron, zinc, potassium, phosphorus. (2)
1. They Are Rich In Antioxidants
Antioxidants are the most important reason you should eat acai berry while other nutrients are second priority.
Due to the lack of antioxidant in foods, let there is an increased rate of free radicals damage throughout the body.
Most of the health benefiting credit goes to the antioxidant content that you’ll get eating acai berry. The antioxidants content is extremely high, said to have a high “ORAC score”.
Antioxidant content of food is measured by Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity(ORAC) score. By weight, the antioxidant content of acai berry is very close to the top food.
Antioxidants are the nutrients that neutralize the free radicals before they damage cells and lead to a number of diseases, including diabetes, cancer and heart disease.
Acai berry have an incredible amount of antioxidants, near to other antioxidant-rich fruits like blueberries and cranberries. Purple acai berry distinct color provides a good amount of anthocyanin.
Free radical enter in our body through poor diet, chemical contaminants, environment pollution and high amount of UV light exposure. These free radicals are responsible for damage of cells which promotes early sign of aging and other chronic diseases.
With enough supply of antioxidants from the diet, you can stay protected from many of health problems which come with free radicals.
While with the consumption, prefer to eat the whole acai berry rather than just acai berry juice. A study found, eating acai pulp and applesauce increased the antioxidants than compared to consuming acai juice. The single guess is the fiber and gut which increased the absorption of antioxidants. Whole acai berry or acai pulp is a better source of antioxidants than acai juice. (3)
Wrap up: Acai berry is an incredibly rich source of antioxidants, and to get the most, eat the whole acai than just drinking juice.
2. They Are Good For Skin Health
Acai berries support healthy skin due to its high antioxidant content. Free radicals are responsible for oxidative stress which leads to damage to skin and its noticeable in form of dark spots, wrinkles, fine line, sogginess, and discoloration. (4)
Acai berry is used from long to get a healthy looking skin. This antioxidant rich food has been used tropical and internally to prevent skin degeneration due to free radicals.
Acai berry oils also used in cosmetics due to its high antioxidants content, and a better alternative to chemical products.
The antioxidants level remains high even when acai berries are processed and stored long-term. It proves beneficial when used in skin care products.
The vitamin B and C are known to protect and tighten skin. Vitamin E in acai berry helps to rejuvenate the skin.
Along with healthy antioxidants, it also contains Omega 3 fatty acids – a component for a youthful and supple skin.
It has been used from long for a healthy looking skin. You can also choose acai berry for your skin health, as a tropical and internally.
Wrap up: Acai berries are a rich source of skin protecting antioxidants which protect from damages. As free radicals don’t cause damage to skin, you will prevent early signs of aging and also with consumption you can reduce the skin damage to get back healthy skin.
3. Acai Berry Boost Brain Health
The compounds in acai berry protect from age-related diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. These diseases have no cure, but eating food rich in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds are the best way to stay protected from these diseases.
Age-related disease and memory loss, are linked with an increase in inflammation and oxidative stress. Studies have found that acai berry contains brain protective nutrients. (5)
Anthocyanins such as cyanidin, delphinidin, malvidin, pelargonidin, and peonidin.
Phenolics such as catechin, ferulic acid, quercetin, resveratrol, and synergic and vanillic acids.
Many studies are proving the benefit of acai berry. It is found to provide protection against inflammation and oxidative stress. It is also found to improve memory in aging rats.
The potential of acai berry is also due to its certain polyphenols. These polyphenols may inhibit the formation of plague from beta-amyloid proteins. The buildup of plaque from beta-amyloid is associated with brain cell damage. (6)
Scientists reported that acai berry can help gain back brain’s health, as the polyphenolics compounds activate the brain’s natural “housekeeper” mechanism. Housekeeper mechanism clean up the toxic cells which are no longer working as this toxin protein or plaque buildup are related to brain cell damage, Alzheimer’s disease, memory loss, and other cognitive functions decline.
With aging, there is a decline in the function of housekeeping. Microglia, a cell is a housekeeper. Its role is to clear up cells or debris which can cause damage to healthy brain cells.
With aging, there is a decline in the function of microglia, from which the buildup of the toxic cells starts and so the decline of brain health. Polyphenolics compound in acai berry or other berries helps to restore the function of housekeeping cell, microglia. (7, 8)
Wrap up: Acai berry is loaded with antioxidants which provides protection from oxidative stress and inflammation. The polyphenols help to restore the “housekeeping” response.
4. Provide Protection From Cancer
Eating foods rich in antioxidants and phytonutrients are the best way to stay protected from the cause that promotes cancer. Free radicals, oxidative stress, and inflammation are responsible for the damage of healthy cell which is responsible for cancer.
The cure for cancer is yet not found, and no food can cure cancer but they can act as a shield to protect from the conditions that promote cancer.
Many studies have found acai berries anti-cancer property.
Acai berry is also rich in anthocyanin – a compound with anticarcinogenic activity. They act as a protective shield against oxidative stress and inflammation. It also inhibits the formation of tumors and the spread of the cancer cell. (9)
Acai berry can be considered as a superfood due to its nutritional profile and its protective property against cancer. Antioxidants and other nutrients are responsible to provide it the beneficial property. But it can’t be used to cure any type of cancer. There are many studies that show its effective on mice but its effectivity on a human is yet not tested.
Can acai berry provide protection from cancer?
The answer may be tough as no research is done on a human. But the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory property can fight the oxidative stress and inflammation, which is responsible for cancer. With a healthy amount of nutrients, it is a good choice to eat acai berry.
Bottom Line: The antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compound in acai berry can counteract the leading cause of cancer, oxidative stress, and inflammation.
5. Protects from Cardiovascular Disease
Acai berry is a good source of the anti-inflammatory compounds like monounsaturated fat and anthocyanin and other nutrients like sterols, oleic acid.
A study on junior hurdlers was provided with acai berry juice for six weeks. At the end of the study, there was no considerable improvement in their performance, but it leads to an increase in total capacity of antioxidant plasma, reduction in exercise-induced damage, and improvement in cholesterol profile. (13)
Consumption of acai pulp twice daily for one month, lowered the LDL (“bad”) cholesterol and increased HDL (“good”) cholesterol. (14)
The benefits can be credited to its fiber and heart-healthy fat.
Monounsaturated fat is found to increase HDL “good” cholesterol while lower the LDL “bad” cholesterol which supports a healthy heart.
Fiber (soluble fiber) in berries also lower the cholesterol level by trapping excess cholesterol in the intestine, leaving less cholesterol to be absorbed by the body.
Sterols present in acai berry also reduce the absorption of cholesterol. (15)
Polyphenols in acai seeds increase endothelial nitric acid production which leads to endothelium-dependent relaxation, reduce reactive oxygen species and regulate key targets associated with lipid metabolism reducing the risk of hypertension and renal failure. (16)
Consumption of fruit pulp can also reduce the selected markers of metabolic disease risk in overweight people. Those markers include reduction of total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol level, and improvement in fasting glucose and insulin level. (17)
Bottom Line: Acai berry is a great source of heart health nutrients those all combine to provide protection form all marker of metabolic disease which increases the risk of cardiovascular disease.
6. Supports Healthy Digestion
The high-fiber content of acai berry supports a healthy digestion. To get the benefits you need to choose a whole berry rather than the juice.
The fiber in diet provides bulk to improve the detoxification of waste to prevent accumulation of waste and toxin in the body. When these wastes stay longer in the colon, it can cause constipation and other digestive problems.
A healthy digestion supports a healthy absorption of nutrients, allowing to absorb maximum nutrients from food.
Acai Berry On Weight Loss
Acai berry is surely a superfood due to its high nutrient content. As it is a superfood, many people prefer to choose it for the purpose of weight loss.
Eating berries loaded with antioxidants, fiber, and other nutrients is a great choice for your health, but completely depending on acai berry won’t be a good step.
Yet there are few studies that can prove its effectivity on the chance of losing weight. The appetite-suppressing ability can control the blood sugar levels, feeling of hunger, satiety, and fullness.
There are no extensive studies done to prove its effectivity, so it’s not recommended to over-depend on acai berry for weight loss. Yet it is a good food but for weight loss, you need to depend on multiple foods for a better and faster result.
There are lots of benefits associated with the intake of acai berry, yet major studies are done on the animal, not on a human. You can add it in your diet but don’t be obsessed with any of claims you might come across. Check the ingredients label to make sure it doesn’t have any added ingredients when you are buying pre-processed pulp.
How to Eat Acai Berry
Fresh acai berry can be eaten raw or added in smoothies of other recipes. Since it has a short life, you will get them in three form – puree, powered and juice.
You can add puree, power or juice in smoothies and blend it.
They can be used to prepare jelly-beans, ice-cream, etc or can be added to marinades, salad dressing, and sauces.
Acai berry is a rich source of antioxidants and other nutrients that proves a better addition to a diet. By adding it to your daily diet, or few times a week will help to meet antioxidants need. While the fiber, healthy fat, and nutrients prove beneficial for overall health.
Add acai berry in your meal and reap those nutrients and the benefits associated with those nutrients.