Acai Berry

Acai Berry Benefits

Acai Berries are literally loaded with antioxidants; in particular they are especially rich in “anthocyanins”, flavonoids that give these berries their deep purple hue. Plants produce anthocyanins to protect their cells from ultra-violet radiation, disease and sun damage. These plant compounds are powerful free radical scavengers, fighting the oxidative damage that leads to disease and aging. Studies show that anthocyanins also protect the DNA, protein and lipids from aging. Anthocyanin rich foods, such as Acai Berries, can stop enzymes from destroying collagen, restoring youthful skin and a good collagen supply will also help to prevent age related eye disorders and osteoporosis.

Acai Berries also have an extremely high ORAC score (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity), weighing in at 15,405 per 100g, whereas blueberries have a score of 4,669 for the same 100g.

Heart Health

The antioxidant activity of Acai Berries includes the protection of LDL against oxidation, which has been demonstrated in a number of studies. Oxidised LDL cholesterol can cause inflammation in the arteries, thus promoting atherosclerosis which in turn increases the chance of heart attack and stroke. The antioxidant compounds found in the Acai Berry can also protect the heart muscle and blood vessels from oxidative damage, lower blood pressure and increase blood flow, benefitting cardiovascular health.

Brain Boosting

Research suggests that a diet rich in antioxidants may lower the risk of age-related diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. Specifically, the anthocyanins that are abundant in Acai Berries have been shown to lower inflammation and oxidative stress in the brain. It is thought that they help to inhibit neuro-inflammation, activate synaptic signalling and improve blood flow to the brain.

There are also ongoing preliminary research studies that indicate Acai improves short and long-term memory and promotes healthy aging of the brain.

Digestive Health

The Acai Berry benefits to the digestive system are twofold; firstly they work as a natural cleanser for the intestines and colon, helping to relieve constipation and other digestive complaints. Secondly, they boost the metabolism to improve gut health, bowel emptying time, and intestinal bloating. The berries are also rich in prebiotics which are the healthy fibres that assist probiotics in digestion.

Immune Boosting

Studies show that consuming Acai Berries can boost the production of human gamma delta T cells in cell cultures, a type of immune cell that recognises and destroys foreign invaders. This subset of T cells plays an important role in mediating innate immunity against a wide variety of infections and displays potent and broad cytotoxic activity against human tumor cells. Acai has also been found to boost the production of interleukin 12 as well as myeloid cells, types of white blood cells that ensure your immune system remains in tip-top condition.

Nutritional Powerhouse

Lastly, but by no means least, Acai Berries are extremely nutrient dense. They are high in healthy monounsaturated fats including oleic acid, which helps the body use omega 3 to lower inflammation and make cell membranes. They are also high in the fat soluble, antioxidant vitamins A and E and a good source of minerals. To top it off they are fibre rich and whilst they don’t contain a huge amount of protein, they do contain 19 amino acids – giving Acai Berries the well earned title of “Superfood”.