Acai is the wonder berry from the Amazon. The acai berry is a natural burst of vital substances. It is as diverse as a multivitamin that also contains antioxidants, amino acids, healthy fatty acids, minerals and trace elements. Acai provides powerful antioxidant protection and thus slows down the ageing process. It also promotes purification and detoxification as well as it protects the heart and eyes.
Acai is a berry that grows on the acai palm trees in the Amazon rainforest of Brazil. The acai berry is small (smaller than a grape) and dark purple in colour. Acai berries mostly consist of a core that is surrounded by little pulp. The core makes up around 90% of the acai berry.
Acai has become a popular superfruit in just a few short years and is considered by many to be one of the most nutritious foods in the world.
Acai berries contain a lot of anthocyanins, antioxidants, fibre, healthy omega fatty acids, amino acids, proteins, phytosterols, vitamins and minerals. The acai berry is also a delicious fruit that tastes like berries with a hint of chocolate. It is clear that acai berries have nutritional and flavour profiles that make them a true superfruit.
Acai berries have an impressive nutritional profile and provide calcium, iron, protein and fibre. It is also a rich source of antioxidants.
Dried Acai berries have an incredible ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) value of 70,000 units per 100 grams. To put this in perspective: Red grapes only have a value of 740 on the ORAC scale. Acai berries also have a 10 time stronger antioxidant effect than red grapes as well as a 2 time stronger antioxidant effect than blueberries.
Acai press releases
- Dr. Perricone chose the acai berry in his bestseller "The Perricone Promise" as the number 1 super food in the world.
- Oprah Winfrey named the acai berry the number 1 superfruit by saying, "This little berry is one of the most nutritious and potent foods in the world."
- "Because they are rich in antioxidants and amino acids, acai berries are considered to be one of the most nutritious fruits in the Amazon basin." New York Times
Vital substances in acai berries
1. Acai contains large amounts of antioxidants and anthocyanins
Simply put, the acai is one of the fruits with the highest antioxidant content in the world. Acai berries contain 10 times as much antioxidants as grapes and 2 times as much as blueberries.
Acai berries contain 10 to 30 times as many anthocyanins as red wine. The ORAC value for 100 grams of freeze-dried acai powder is over 70,000. An almost unbelievable number when you consider that the majority of the population consumes less than 1,000 ORAC units per day.
2. Acai delivers healthy fats
The acai berry contains a lot of omega fatty acids. Almost 50% of the calories in the acai berry come from its fat content - with 74% of the fat being healthy, unsaturated fats such as omega-3, omega-6 and omega-9.
3. Acai is rich in amino acids and proteins
Amino acids make up 7.59% of the weight of the pulp of the Acai berry. 19 different amino acids have been identified in acai berries. Since amino acids are the building blocks of protein, it's no surprise that 100 grams of acai contains 8 grams of protein.
4. Acai is a fantastic source of phytosterols
Three phytosterols (or phytosterols) have been found in acai berries - B-sitosterol, campesterol, and stigmasterol. Phytosterols provide numerous health benefits in maintaining a healthy heart and a good digestion.
5. Acai is a good source of vitamins and minerals
Acai berries contain vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, C and E. They contain as much vitamin C as blueberries and 100 grams of Acai also contain more than 1000 IU of vitamin A. Also, potassium, calcium, magnesium, copper and zinc can be found in the acai berry.
6. Acai is a good source of fibre
For a fruit, the acai berry has a high fibre profile. 100 grams of freeze-dried acai powder contains around 14 grams of fibre.
7. Acai has a delicious taste
You might assume that anything that is healthy has to taste terrible - but the opposite is true in this case. The acai tastes like berries and chocolate - a really unique and delicious taste. Acai berries are used in smoothies and desserts and can also be eaten on their own.
The vital composition of acai is being researched further and there are many ingredients in the fruit that have not yet been determined. We know that there have to be undiscovered antioxidants in the acai berry, as it contains a lot of anthocyanins - but not enough to justify this incredible ORAC value.
What are the health benefits of acai berries?
Acai berries are one of the healthiest super fruits you can eat. Although acai berries contain many nutrients, the antioxidants are the main reason for their health benefits.
- The powerful antioxidants in acai berries protect against heart disease, arthritis and premature ageing.
- Acai berries support the healthy functioning of the body system and organs.
- Acai can help regulate blood sugar levels and lower cholesterol levels.
- The antioxidants in acai berries promote recovery after serious illnesses.
- Acai berries can protect against cell degradation and therefore prevent serious diseases.
- The fantastic combination of omega fatty acids in the acai berry promotes digestive and cardiovascular health.
- Acai berries optimize metabolism, which is why many of the world's best athletes make them a part of their diet.
- The natural proteins in the acai berry provide the body with valuable amino acids in order to regenerate body tissue. Protein plays an important role in all vital biological processes.
- Acai berries increase energy levels, libido and stamina.
- Acai berries ensure healthy, glowing skin and hair.
- Acai berries promote sound sleep.
- Acai berries strengthen the immune system and thus strengthen the body's defences.
- Acai berries are a powerful anti-inflammatory.
- Acai berries help in reducing pain and sore muscles.
- Acai berries support the rejuvenation of the mind, body and soul.
The US Department of Agriculture commissioned studies to investigate the relationship between foods rich in antioxidants and the ageing process. Here are some quotes from scientists who participated in the research:
- "Studies from the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center of Ageing at Tufts University in Boston show that consuming fruits and vegetables with a high ORAC value can help slow the ageing process in the body as well as the brain."
- "Science has long believed that many diseases in old age are caused by damaged free radicals, including cardiovascular diseases and cancer. There is strong evidence that increasing your intake of fruits and vegetables reduces the risk of cancer and that a low intake of such increases the risk. Current evidence shows that decreased brain function associated with age and diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's may be due to increased susceptibility to free radicals," says Joseph, a neuroscientist.
- Ronald L. Prior, researcher on the Department of Agriculture study, suggested that "the ORAC score can help define the nutritional requirements needed to prevent tissue damage."
Can acai cure diseases?
If you believe some websites, acai berries sound like a miracle food. While some claim that acai is a miracle fruit that cures every known disease there is, this is an exaggeration of course.
If you want to stay healthy and feel more energetic and young, you need a healthy diet rich in vital substances and also exercise. It is true that when it comes to good nutrition, you won't find anything better than acai berries. However, you should not raise false hopes by claiming that acai berries are a cure-all for all diseases.
Can acai kill cancer cells?
A study by the University of Florida, published on January 12th, 2006 in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, found that acai berries caused self-destruction in 86 percent of leukaemia cells tested in the test tube.
While this study can be viewed as a promising place to start, it is important to understand that acai killed cultured cancer cells in a test tube. This, of course, is different from treating cancer in the human body. Therefore, much more research is needed before any concrete statements can be made about the effects of acai berries on cancer in the human body.
It is clear that consuming foods with high ORAC scores has numerous health benefits. Acai berries are among the foods with the highest ORAC values. Acai is an incredibly healthy superfruit that can help you stay healthy and vital.
How is freeze dried acai berry powder made?
The naturally high content of healthy fatty acids in the acai berry means that it spoils much faster than most other fruits - usually within 24 hours. As soon as the berries have been harvested, they are immediately processed.
There are several ways to process the pulp of the acai berries, but the best and gentlest method is freeze-drying. The fruit pulp of the berries is quickly frozen. Then the frozen water is gently heated so it can evaporate.
The result is a product that contains all the vital substances of the fresh acai berry in a stable, long-lasting, easily transportable form. Freeze-dried acai berries are also incredibly concentrated as it takes over 7 kg of berries to make 1 kg of freeze-dried powder.
In contrast to spray-dried products, freeze-dried products do not contain any carrier substances and therefore consist of 100% fruit. Freeze drying is the highest quality drying process.
Why can't you buy fresh acai berries from us in the supermarket?
Fresh acai berries are only available fresh in the Amazon rainforest. Unfortunately, this is not possible in all other countries. The acai berry spoils very quickly and is no longer edible 24 hours after being picked from the acai palm.
Therefore, the pulp of the Acai berries is pureed and frozen immediately after harvest. Some juice bars offer acai smoothies that contain this pureed acai pulp - but these shakes are very expensive.
The water can also be removed from the pulp of the acai berries by freeze drying and processed into a powder. Freeze-dried acai berries are offered in powder and capsule form as an acai dietary supplement. These contain all the vital substances of the fresh acai berries in a highly concentrated form.
What is the difference between freeze-dried acai berry powder and spray-dried acai powder?
There are two methods of making acai berries for use in nutritional supplements - freeze drying and spray drying.
1. Freeze-dried acai berries - Purely natural, 100% fruit
The best method to make high quality acai powder is by freeze drying. The gentle freeze-drying process takes place at low temperatures, does not require any carrier substances and ensures that all vital substances of the raw acai berry are retained.
2. Spray drying acai is not a good idea
Spray drying is a much cheaper method of processing acai berries. The acai berry juice is sprayed onto a carrier such as maltodextrin. In the end, spray-dried acai powder can contain up to 40% maltodextrin. In addition to this, the acai juice is heated during the spray-drying process, which means that many of the valuable vital substances in the acai berry are lost.
So when you buy spray-dried acai, which contains 500 mg acai powder per capsule, you are actually only getting 300 mg of dried acai juice per capsule. The only advantage of spray-dried acai is that it is cheaper. If you want to buy a high quality acai product, make sure that it is freeze-dried acai.
Does acai have any side effects or interactions?
The short answer to that is no!. Like any other edible fruit, acai has no side effects or interactions.
The only important thing is that when you buy acai products, make sure you are buying 100% all-natural acai. Some manufacturers combine acai with other ingredients such as caffeine, sugar or other ingredients that can have the potential to have undesirable side effects.
If you want to be absolutely sure and avoid side effects or interactions, only buy acai products that contain freeze-dried, all-natural organic acai without carriers or additives.