You may have heard of the acai berry (pronounced ah-sah-EE) because of the raves related to health and weight-loss. There are those who claim it to be a superfood that can help promote weight loss. Research continues on that aspect, but you probably know that a diet rich in antioxidants, with or without acai berries, will help promote good health.
The Acai berry, reddish-purple in color, is only about an inch long, resembles the blueberry, and comes from the acai palm tree native to Brazil.
The Acai berry has a short life span in Brazil but you can find the pulp or juice frozen, freeze-dried or in a dried form. These forms can easily be incorporated into drinks, yogurt, and even sorbet. In Brazil it is a common flavor of ice cream and eaten with tapioca.
Health advocates emphasize the importance of adding acai berry to your diet as a supplement because of its antioxidant activity, an aid to help prevent heart disease and cancer. The powder form today is used to create a supplement that you can take with the rest of your vitamins.
Researchers and the health industry claim that the acai berry contains anthocyanins and flavonoids. The anthocyanins are responsible for the red, purple, and blue colors in many fruits, vegetables, and even flowers. Combined with flavonoids, anthocyanins help defend the body against life’s stressors, help in the body’s cell protection system neutralizing free radicals. From the research I found, there is no known health benefit from taking acai berries that is any different from any other similar fruits but you can decide if you want to add this to your supplement regiment.
In case you thought of the acai palm tree as only providing acai berries, you may be surprised to learn that the leaves of this palm tree are made into hats, baskets, mats, brooms, and even roof thatch for homes. The trunk wood is resistant to pests and is used in building construction. Long live the acai palm tree!