Benefits of the Acai Berry Robyn Roberson May 30, 2011 Gamma Alexis LeBlanc Aveda Institute Benefits of the Acai Berry The Acai berry (ah-SAH’-ee) is known around the world as a “super fruit” The Acai berry is a one inch-long purple berry; that grows high atop the 90 foot tall Acai palm tree, native to Central and South America. This highly perishable berry is related to the blueberry and cranberry; and holds more antioxidant power than the blackberry, oranges, and even red wine. The berry must be eaten or processed within 24 to 48 hours because it loses its benefits and freshness quickly.
In the Special Acai Report the Acai berry is mentioned, “to have the antioxidant concentration of five times higher than that of Gingko Biloba, the popular “brain boosting” herbal supplement that is renowned for its antioxidant properties. Due to the vitality of this fruit, it is also referred to as the “Viagra of the Amazon. ( Special Acai Report – 2005, 1)” Other benefits attributed to this amazing little berry are anti-aging properties, joint flexibility, decreased susceptibility to heart related problems, lowers cholesterol, and fights depression.
It is even known aide in curing cancer. Antioxidant is defined as, “a molecule capable of inhibiting the oxidation of other molecules. Oxidation is a chemical reaction that transfers electrons from a substance to an oxidizing agent. Oxidation reactions can produce free radicals. In turn, these radicals can start chain reactions. When the chain reaction occurs in a cell, it can cause damage or death of the cell. Antioxidants terminate these chain reactions by removing free radical intermediates, and inhibit other oxidation reactions.
They do this by being oxidized themselves. (Wikipedia, 2011 1)” These antioxidant rich berries aide skin by reducing the effects of aging and providing better elasticity. An E-zine article stated, “Regardless of whether it is used as a topical cream or as an oral pill, the Acai berry supplements can nourish the skin and improve skin tone. We often cover our face with creams made from multiple chemicals, not all of which are beneficial to the body. Acai berry is a natural product and improves the body’s ability to heal itself by removing harmful free radicals in the body.
In addition to antioxidants, Acai supplements contain phytonutrients and vitamins for proper skin regeneration. ( Drake, 2011 2). ” In essence, this berry is a “fountain of youth. ” Besides the ability to benefit cosmetically, other health benefits of the Acai berry have shown to lower the risk of heart disease, lower cholesterol levels with proper diet, elevate one’s mood therefore alleviating depression, and also provides a boost of energy. Perhaps the most interesting fact about the Acai berry is from a study done by the University of Florida. The study showed extracts from acai berries triggered a self-destruct response in up to 86 percent of leukemia cells tested, said Stephen Talcott, an assistant professor with University of Floridas’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences. ” The study also explained, “that it was not intended to show whether compounds found in acai berries could prevent leukemia in people; rather, this was only a model and we do not want to give anyone false hope. We are encouraged by the findings, however. Compounds that show good activity against cancer cells in a model system are most likely to have beneficial effects in our bodies. University of Florida, 2006 2, 4)” In summation, the acai berry may not fully cure cancer, but it’s benefits for the human body go beyond skin care. The acai berry may be small, but it’s benefits are worth it’s weight in gold. Acai is not a drug, so it has no side effects. Supplements containing acai may; so, as always, it is important to read labels. Health benefits, better skin, and increased energy are just a few reasons to give the Acai berry a try. It can be found whole in certain areas and in creams, juices, and even dietary supplements. Just 1 to 4 ounces every day can have such amazing benefits.
Plus, nearly 8 in 10 people who purchase acai supplements and products will reorder the product, a true testament to the value of the berry. Citations Amherst. (2005). Special Acai Report . Retrieved from http://www3. amherst. edu/~dmirwin/AcaiReport. html Drake, J. A. (2011). E-zine Articles. E-zine. Retrieved from http://ezinearticles. com/? Acai-Berry-and-the-Benefits-to-Your-Skin=1948689 University of Florida. (2006). University of Florida News. Retrieved from http://news. ufl. edu/2006/01/12/berries/ Wikipedia. (2011). Wikipedia. Retrieved from http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Antioxidant