For most people, the consumption of berries is limited to only a few different types, and they are almost never organic.
Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries (in that order) are the three most popular types in the U.S., but they’re almost never organic and are often heavily sprayed with chemicals, including strawberries which ranked #1 on the 2018 ‘Dirty Dozen’ list by the Environmental Working Group.
While these berries are still relatively beneficial in comparison to other popular foods that make up the “Standard American Diet,” they’re still a far cry from being truly healthy.
And as fate would have it, there’s one particular berry most Americans are missing out on that could solve some of the most common and debilitating health problems they face each day.
Acai: The Powerful Brazilian Superfood That Destroys Cancer Cells
Even as we continue to throw billions of dollars at the mantle of “Breast Cancer Awareness,” the problem shows little sign of slowing.
According to current statistics from the website BreastCancer.org, 1 in 8 women will develop invasive breast cancer in their lifetime, and critics say not enough is being done in the field of prevention.
Meanwhile, metastatic breast cancer remains the most overlooked and understudied killer of women that the Susan G. Komen Foundation and others are not doing enough to address, according to former Los Angeles Times columnist named Laurie Becklund who passed away from the disease and wrote this heart-wrenching final letter beforehand.
It goes without saying, but we are not doing enough to address the root causes of breast cancer, which begins largely with diet. The good news, however, is that there are plenty of healthy superfoods out there capable of tackling this problem, starting with the humble purple acai berry out of Brazil and other parts of South America.
The health benefits of the acai berry include:
-The ability to reduce blood sugar levels in adults (the serving amount was 100 grams of acai pulp per day)
-The ability to increase resting antioxidant levels in the blood 3-fold, according to PubMed
–Powerful benefits for athletes who engage in high intensity athletic activities (acai smoothie bowls are a favorite, cultural staple of surfers and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu competitors alike)
-Benefits for regulating healthy insulin levels
-The ability to reduce cholesterol in overweight adults
And last but not least, the ability to eradicate breast cancer cells, to the tune of 55% of all cells in a laboratory setting. While further trials need to be done in order to figure out exactly how this all works in the human body, it’s a promising additional benefit to what is already one of the healthiest berries in the world, renowned for its brain protective powers.
If you want to reap these benefits, there’s one thing to keep in mind, however: taking an acai supplement with high levels of PACs (proanthocyanidins) is the biggest key, according to PubMed.
These are the unique type of antioxidants found to be highly effective cancer cell fighters in previous studies, that are found in everything from red wine to dark chocolate and even grape seed extracts.
If you’re looking for the best health gains, however, eating smoothies or the famous acai smoothie bowls made from whole berries may be the healthiest and most cost effective way, especially taking into account the high price of most quality acai supplements.
If you’re looking for whole acai berries, they are almost always found frozen in health food stores or even some grocery stores, as well as online through traditional brands like AmaFruits and Sambazon.
Final Thoughts on Acai Health Benefits
If you’ve never tried the acai berry before, you’re missing out.
While it has taken awhile for the world to warm up to the taste of this widely revered superfood, those who’ve tried it and know the way it makes them feel have become lifelong fans. According to one story the fruit was not nearly as popular as it is today in Brazil before outsiders began coming in and harvesting it, because the taste was not thought to be sweet enough to be worth eating.
Now, acai ice cream is a popular delicacy, as are the aforementioned acai bowls, which often include fruit purees like dragonfruit or banana, yogurt and/or granola, and are topped with everything from pumpkinseeds to raw cacao nibs, blueberries, shredded coconut, and other highly energizing foods to create one of the most delicious and functional breakfasts you could ever try.
Acai bowls have also caught on at health food stores and cafes in the U.S. and throughout the world.
I personally am a huge fan of homemade acai bowls, with a mix of half acai and half dragonfruit, the latter of which removes some of the chalky texture the berry was originally shunned for in some parts of Brazil.
The taste takes a little while to warm up to because it’s more understated than more typically sweet berries, but the depth, complexity and highly unique taste of acai make it one berry that’s hard to forget.
Check it out if you get the chance, and be sure to tell others in your family, especially those you might know who are struggling with blood sugar, cholesterol and the other similar health issues mentioned above.
In this case, one simple superfood, taken consistently, really can make a dramatic difference.
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