Is the Acai Berry a Superfood? Please read I found this very informative ...Mia
While it would be almost impossible to live up to all the claims made about it, this antioxidant-rich, grape-sized fruit from the Amazon is a nutritious powerhouse — just like any berry.
Grown in Central and South America, the acai (pronounced ah-sigh-EE) berry is the fruit of the Amazon palm tree. Because the fruit, which is the size of a small grape, is delicate, transporting it is difficult. That’s why you are most likely to find the acai berry as an ingredient in smoothies or as juice in the refrigerated or freezer section of natural food stores, says registered dietitian Keri Gans, MS, RD, a spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association. It’s also sold as a powder and in capsules. “It’s put in a lot of products because it is touted as a superfood,” she says.
Is the Acai Berry Really That Special?
The acai berry is a good source of fiber, antioxidants, and heart-healthy fats. “Antioxidants strengthen our immune system and protect against cancers,” Gans says. For that reason, berries should be part of a healthy diet. Still, she says, despite claims to the contrary, no one has proven that the acai berry has any more antioxidants than other berries.
Many say the acai berry can perform assorted wonders, from preventing aging effects to lowering cholesterol to increasing energy. “[We hear] ‘the acai berry can do these amazing things,’ but there’s no research to prove any of these claims,” Gans says. “We wish it was a magical berry, but there is no one superfood. It’s a case of ‘if it sounds too good to be true, it is.’”
The same can be said of the hype surrounding the acai berry diet — the fruit doesn’t have any special powers to help people lose weight. Most berries are low in calories and high in nutrients and fiber, making them filling — raspberries, strawberries, and blueberries, just to name a few. That’s how they might help promote weight loss, Gans says. Yes, acai berries are high in antioxidants, which may help flush unwanted fat from the body. Still, there’s no scientific proof that the acai berry, the main ingredient in the acai berry diet, has any special ability to help you lose weight, she says. “Losing weight requires a commitment to watching your diet and being active — not just eating acai berries,” warns Gans.