from the Amazon
for Cardio Health
ACAI BERRIES for Anti-Aging and Cardio Health
A Potent Source of Antioxidants and Omega Fatty Acids
The Acai berry, or Acai Fruit (pronounced ah-SIGH-ee) grows on majestic palm trees (L. Euterpe oleracea) in the flood plains of the Amazon Rainforest in Brazil and looks like purple grapes strung on slim stems hanging down from the top of the tree. The berry is about the size of a blueberry. The Euterpe oleracea palm tree can grow to a height of 65 feet in tropical regions. The locals often eat the young leaf buds like cabbage, which gives the tree another name - "cabbage palm". This tree is also the source of "hearts of palm", an exotic vegetable exported from Brazil.
The Acai berries are picked daily in the wild, and dried within 24 hours of harvest. The Acai berry is 10% fruit pulp and 90% inedible nut, so the pulp must be carefully separated from the nut, which yields a thick Acai fruit pulp product.
Acai fruit has a delicious tropical berry flavor and provides exceptional nutrition. Some say the Acai berry tastes like a blueberry with a chocolate flavoring. The people living in the Amazon region in Northern Brazil have consumed Acai berries for hundreds of years, and its healing and sustaining powers are legendary.
Because the Acai fruit is perishable, it was not until modern freezing techniques made long-distance transport possible in the 1990s that scientific research into this remarkable berry could begin in the USA and other countries outside Brazil. Now this "undiscovered" Brazilian Acai berry has become a media celebrity!
Acai berries were recently featured on MSNBC News and on The Oprah Winfrey Show, where they were endorsed by Oprah. The Acai berry is reported to be the No. 1 superfood in the world.
In the Amazon region the Acai berry was traditionally used as an energy booster for hunting and improving libido.
Often called "the miracle fruit", Acai berries also help reduce the risk of cancer, due to their antioxidant properties which are five times more potent than Gingko biloba, a commonly-used herbal therapy product.
The nutritional value of Brazilian Acai berries includes: high levels of Antioxidants, Omega Fatty Acids (healthy fats), Iron, Amino Acids, fiber, and many other vitamins and minerals.
Medicinal Properties and Health Benefits of Acai Berries (Euterpe oleracea)
The Brazilian Acai berry is known to have the following properties:
Antioxidant, Antibacterial, Anti-Cancer, Antimutagenic, Anti-inflammatory, Strengthens Cardiovascular System.
Acai berries contain very high amounts of essential fatty acids and omegas (Linoleic Acid and Oleic Acid), proven to lower LDL and maintain HDL cholesterol levels. They also contain a remarkable concentration of antioxidants to help combat premature aging. The Acai berry is a dense source of a particular class of flavonoids called anthocyanins (red-blue phenols with powerful antioxidant properties).
The primary anthocyanin in Acai berries is cyanidin-3 glucoside, which has been found to be 3.5 times stronger than both Trolox, a Vitamin E analogue, and the predominant anthocyanin found in red wine, malvadin-3 glucoside. Anthocyanins have been found to demonstrate many potential therapeutic effects, including treatment of diabetic retinopathy (the blindness which often afflicts persons with diabetes) and fibrocystic disease of the human breast.
The ORAC value (oxygen radical absorbance capacity) of Acai berries is higher than any other edible berry in the world!References and Research:
Brazilian berry destroys cancer cells in lab, UF study shows
University of Florida News, Thursday, January 12, 2006.
"Published today in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, the study showed extracts from acai (ah-SAH’-ee) berries triggered a self-destruct response in up to 86 percent of leukemia cells tested, said Stephen Talcott, an assistant professor with UF’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences."
International Journal of Food Science Nutrition. 2005 Feb; 56(1):53-64. Total oxidant scavenging capacities of Euterpe oleracea Mart. (Acai) fruits. Lichtenthaler R, Rodrigues RB, Maia JG, Papagiannopoulos M, Fabricius H, Marx F.
- The Amazon Acai berry has 10 times the antioxidants of grapes, and twice the antioxidants of blueberries. The Brazilian Acai berry (ah-SIGH-ee) is considered to have the best nutritional value of any fruit on earth! Per gram, the Acai berry fruit pulp has an antioxidant potency of 167, compared to 106 for Pomegranate and 32 for Blueberry.
- An amazingly high concentration level of antioxidants in Acai berries contributes to combating premature aging. The proanthocyanidine contents in Acai berries provide 10 to 30 times the anthocyanins compared to the same volume of red wine (these are the purple-colored antioxidants). Although the French have a high fat diet, they have a low incidence of cardio vascular disease compared to other western countries. They attribute this to their consumption of red wine.
- Acai berries can help promote a healthier cardio vascular system and digestive tract, because of the berry's synergy of monounsaturated fats (the healthy fats), dietary fiber, and phytosterols.
- Acai berries are also an excellent source of dietary fiber! Fiber promotes a healthy digestive system. Research studies suggests soluble fibers may help lower blood cholesterol. The insoluble fiber may help to reduce the risk of developing certain types of cancers.
- Acai berries are extremely rich in organic vegetable protein which does not generate cholesterol during its digestion, and is more easily processed and transported to your muscles than animal protein (such as in milk or meat). Besides its outstanding content of protein and unsaturated lipids, the Acai berry is also rich in carbohydrates which provide your body with the necessary energy while working or participating in any kind of sport.
- Acai berries contain an essential amino acid complex along with trace minerals which are vital for proper muscle contraction and regeneration. Aside from the energy and fluid replacement, Acai berries provide a nutrition profile complete with vitamins, minerals and essential fatty acids (Omega 3, Omega 6 and Omega 9). The fatty acid ratio in the Acai berry resembles that of olive oil. Studies suggest this is a contributing factor to the low incidence of heart disease in Mediterranean populations.
- Acai berries contain plant sterols, including beta-sitosterol. Today, sterols are being used to treat associated benign prostate dyperplasia. These plant sterols have also been shown to help control cholesterol as well as act as precursors to many important substances produced by the body.
The Acai berry pulp contains these complex compounds of plant cell membranes called phyto sterols which are used to treat symptoms associated with BPH (benign prostate hyperplasia or benign prostate hypertrophy) - an enlarged prostate gland caused by the growth of a pre-cancerous tumor. Phytosterols in Acai also help promote a healthy cardiovascular system and contribute to a healthy digestive tract. (Phyto means "plant".)
- OMEGA FATTY ACIDS (Omega 9, Omega 6).
These mono-saturated essential fatty acids such as Linoleic Acid and Oleic Acid help lower LDL (harmful cholesterol) while maintaining HDL (beneficial cholesterol). Omega fatty acids combat heart disease by increasing healthy cell development. Omega fatty acids are essential for healthy nervous system development and regeneration. They help rapidly repair and rejuvenate muscles after intense exercise.
- AMINO ACIDS.
The Açai berry contains an almost perfect essential amino acid complex. This is vital for proper muscle contraction and regeneration; and for endurance, strength, sustained energy, and muscle development.
- NATURAL VITAMIN E.
Acai berries contain natural Vitamin E, a strong antioxidant to protect against aging and free radical damage to the cells.
Acai berries are rich in anthocyanins, an essential antioxidant that helps combat premature aging. In fact, Acai has 10 to 30 times more anthocyanins (purple colored antioxidants) than a glass of red wine.
Theobromine acts as a bronchial dilator to help open air passages in the lungs. This increased air flow capacity helps increase oxygen intake, which increases endurance, strength, and athletic performance.
Best Sources of Acai Berries (Euterpe oleracea)
Several functional health drinks and juice products sold on the Internet contain Acai berries or a concentrated extract of the Acai berry fruit:
- Acai Plus
- Fruta Vida™
- Himalayan Goji™ Juice and GoChi™ Juice
A new kind of delicious healthy chocolate contains unroasted organic cocoa beans and acai berries. Most people are unaware that raw cacao beans have an even higher ORAC score than all the superfruits, including wolfberries and acai berries. ORAC is a standard measure of the antioxidant properties per gram of a food substance. This chocolate manufacturer is the only one confident enough to have its chocolate products tested by a famous independent U.S. laboratory and then print the actual ORAC score results on the label of each product!
This page is ©2006-2014 by Michael Star and others. E&OE.
The content of this page is provided for educational purposes only, and should not be considered as medical advice. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration does not review or test products classed as a "food supplement". The following statement is required by the U.S. FDA:
"This product line has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product line is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent disease."
* NOTE: MonaVie™, Fruta Vida™, Xango™, Vemma™, Himalayan Goji™ Juice are registered trademarks of the respective owners of these products.