What is an Acai Berry and is it Better for You Than It’s Other Berry Relatives?
There has been a recent wave of acai cafes popping up all over Southern California selling these amazing concoctions of yummy goodness. If you are one of the unfortunate people left behind in the acai craze, and don’t even know what we are talking about, you must read on. Your health depends on it Ok, that’s a little dramatic, but seriously, the acai berry has evolved like no other berry has EVER .
The acai berry comes from a type of palm tree found in the Amazon Rainforest in Brazil.It looks similar to a grape both in size and shape and has a pit.
Thousands of years ago natives of Brazil discovered the acai berry had many health benefits. When consumed on a regular basis, the noticed a boost in their energy levels. Local tribes also used the berry to treat ailments, promote faster healing, and as an immune stimulant. As stated in an article written by Lindsey Duncan, ND, CN, Brazilians have nicknamed this superfruit the Beauty Berry’ because it has so many compounds that make the body both feel and look better from the inside out.
So what makes this exotic relative of the blueberry and cranberry so powerful?
Antioxidants Acai berries contain incredible doses of antioxidants. Approximately 15-30 times more than grapes or red wine. One powerful antioxidant found in the acai berry is called anthocyanin, which is said to be the force behind it’s free-radical and age-defying properties. While other red and purple berries have anthocyanin, the acai berry has more than any other food.
Protein The acai berry has very high levels of protein for a fruit. In fact, the acai berry has more protein than an egg. Protein is essential for muscle growth and maintenance.
Omega 3, 6, 9 Fatty Acids When you hear about the Omega Fatty Acids they are usually associated with olive oil, avocado and fish, but this little berry packs them in also. Not only do the Omega’s promote healthy skin, hair and nails, but can also help lower bad cholesterol levels.
Vitamins The acai berry is full of essential vitamins and has high amounts of Vitamin C and Vitamin E.
This teeny little berry packs a lot of punch when it comes to health benefits.
- Helps promote a healthy heart
- Aids in weight loss and helps maintain a healthy weight
- Promotes skin, nail and hair health
- Helps maintain a healthy digestive system
- May help slow and/or reverse the signs of aging
- Energy boost
- Improves mental imbalance in women with menopause
The three most popular ways to consume the acai berry are with juice drinks, smoothies, and bowls. Most grocery stores, especially health food stores, carry acai juice in the refrigerated section or frozen acai in the freezer section. The brand Sambazon is a trusted source when looking for organic, Non-GMO acai products. You can visit their website to learn how to make your own acai smoothie or bowl. They also have very hip Sambazon acai cafes in Southern California. Acai bowls and smoothies can also be found at Mother’s Market,Shirley’s Bagels, and Bonzai Bowls.
Now that you are excited about the acai berry and it’s benefits, we hope you will experience what surfers have been raving about for years. The acai bowl. A frozen, almost gelato like treat, topped with bananas, granola and honey. Or, choose from numerous other options now available for creating your own customized twist on the original version.