What is it?

Up until a decade ago, Acai berries were practically unheard of by anyone outside of South America. They are a fruit harvested from Acai palm trees, which are native to the rainforests of South America. It is a reddish, purple fruit that is small and round like a grape and is a relative of the blueberry and the cranberry. The Acai berry itself is 90% seed, covered in a small amount of pulp. The pulp is the only thing that is actually eaten, not the seed. The taste of the Acai berry is often reminiscent of wild berries combined with chocolate!

acai berries on tree

Why is it super?

  • Acai berries are extremely high in antioxidants, which play a role in helping to keep cells healthy
  • This superfood is a well-known source of dietary fiber and can aid in keeping out digestive system in optimal function.
  • These berries contain great amounts of iron, calcium, and vitamin A.
  • They are high in Omega 3 fatty acids, which play an important role in your child’s brain and eyesight development.
  • They contain numerous essential amino acids, which cannot be made of the body and need to be consumed through diet.
harvesting-acai.jpg

How to eat it?

Acai berries are safe for children starting at 1 year. They do not contain any adverse allergens and are considered safe for the general population, consumed in moderation.

Buy organic Acai berries or Acai juice, and make sure to thoroughly clean the berries before consuming them.

One of our favorite ways to eat Acai berries is in a smoothie!

Acai Smoothie (two servings):

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ cups almond or nut milk
  • 1 ½ bananas
  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 1 cup strawberries
  • 1 cup pure acai juice (or acai frozen smoothie pack)
  • 3/4 cup ice

Directions:

Place all the ingredients into a blender, blend, then enjoy!

acai berry smoothie

Acai berries also come in a supplement form. Because the scientific results and conclusions of the benefits of this supplement are still under going research, we recommend trying these berries in the previously mentioned smoothie recipe. If interested in the supplement or have any questions about the safety of Acai berries for your family, please consult with your family’s doctor before consuming.

Fun fact: In Brazil, native people use the Acai berries to heal skin conditions and sip Acai tea to soothe fevers! Even more reason to love these little berries!

 

 

Written by: Dana Stretchberry

Sources:

http://www.webmd.boots.com/healthy-eating/guide/acai-berries-health-benefits

http://foodfacts.mercola.com/acai.html

http://parentinghealthybabies.com/health-benefits-of-acai-berries-for-kids/

 

Recipe Adaptations:

http://foodfacts.mercola.com/acai.html

 

Images:

www.lifeaura.com

www.essentiallivingfoods.com     

www.soulfulspoon.com

www.peanutbutterandpeppers.com  

www.blueplanetgreenliving.com