You have no doubt heard about the acai berry and its healthy properties, but what are the acai nutritional benefits that have made it so popular recently? Reading over the potential benefits of the acai berry is like reading a laundry list of different health foods and supplements. It's hard to imagine that one little berry could possibly be so incredibly beneficial. But the facts don't lie and when you break down what the acai berry contains, it's almost mind-boggling.
The Powerful Antioxidant
If you're paying any attention at all to many of the leading diseases present in our society today, you've most likely come across the terms free radical and antioxidant. These are like the good and evil in our bodies, the former causing the diseases and the latter combating its effects. Free radicals are produced in the body even while we go about our daily activities. These are naturally produced atoms that lack an electron pair, and they go about stealing electron from other atoms, which in turn cause other atoms to turn into free radicals. Now in low levels, free radicals are tolerable in the body but an overabundance of them can trigger a host of illnesses including some of the most serious ones like cancer and heart diseases. Antioxidants slow down the negative effects of free radicals by providing that much-needed electron.
What makes acai berry really stand out is its antioxidant content which measures far above all other fruits. The ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) is a system which scores a type of food on its antioxidant level -- the higher the number, the greater the antioxidant content. For instance, the avocado only measures 19 on the ORAC and yet is known to reduce the risk of prostate cancer. With a 94 ORAC score, Cranberries have long been called super fruit. Acai berry on the other hand, scores an amazing 610 ORAC count. Now let's see other fruits even come close to that.
There is Still More to the Acai Berry
The acai berry could hardly be called a super fruit if its only benefits came from antioxidants. The acai nutritional facts also attribute a good amount of unsaturated fats to the tiny berry. Unsaturated fats, known as good fats, are a source of essential fatty acids like Omega-6. The body is unable to produce these acids and must get them from foods. Like many other healthy foods, the acai berry is also a good source of fiber. In addition, acai berries contain a lesser-known compound found in the skin called anthocyanins. This compound is believed to help fight coronary heart disease, a major killer among Americans.
Does That All Make the Acai Berry a Super Fruit Worth Studying?
There aren't many foods out there as impressive as the acai berry. It has earned its rank among the super fruits. The nutritional benefits of the berry are just being studied, but when you see exactly what is in the acai berry, it is not hard to imagine that it will stay at the top of the health supplement ladder. The acai nutritional facts don't lie and this remarkable little berry is here to stay.