En Español
Health Encyclopedia

Nutritional Supplement

Açaí

  • Blood Sugar and Diabetes Support

    Metabolic Syndrome

    Preliminary evidence suggests acai berry may improve metabolic health.
    Metabolic Syndrome
    ×
    Açaí berries are high in polyphenols and therefore have a strong antioxidant action.1 In a pilot study, supplementing with 100 grams per day of açaí berry pulp for 30 days was found to lower blood glucose, insulin, and total and LDL-cholesterol levels in ten overweight adults with metabolic disease.2 However, in a placebo-controlled trial with 37 participants with metabolic syndrome, treatment with 325 mL of an açaí berry beverage (providing 370 mg of gallic acid) twice daily did not improve markers of glucose and lipid metabolism.3

    Type 2 Diabetes

    Preliminary evidence suggests açai may have benefits in type 2 diabetes.
    Type 2 Diabetes
    ×
    Açai berry is reported to be a traditional remedy for diabetes. A pilot trial in ten overweight but otherwise healthy adults found taking 100 grams of açai pulp per day for one month led to decreases in fasting glucose and insulin levels as well as after-meal blood glucose, triglyceride, total cholesterol, and LDL-cholesterol levels.4 Positive metabolic and anti-diabetic effects have been demonstrated in animal models of type 2 diabetes.5,6 Clinical trials evaluating açai’s effect in people with type 2 diabetes are needed.

    Type 1 Diabetes

    Açaí is rich in antioxidants and has been used traditionally to treat diabetes.
    Type 1 Diabetes
    ×
    Açaí is reported to be a traditional remedy for diabetes. Oxidative stress may contribute to diabetes onset and its complications, and açaí is rich in antioxidant polyphenols such as anthocyanins. Studies in people without diabetes show açaí consumption can raise antioxidant status in the body and improve lipid levels and blood vessel function.7,8,9 In animal research, açaí extract reduced diabetes-related kidney damage and dysfunction; however, direct evidence for açaí’s benefits in people with type 1 diabetes is lacking.10
  • Menstrual and PMS Support

    Dysmenorrhea

    Açaí is a traditional remedy for dysmenorrhea, and there is preliminary evidence that some anthocyanins found in açaí may help with dysmenorrhea symptoms.
    Dysmenorrhea
    ×
     

    Açaí is reported to be a traditional remedy for dysmenorrhea. There is preliminary evidence that anthocyanins from bilberry, some of which are also found in açaí, may help with dysmenorrhea symptoms.11 However, there have been no clinical trials investigating açaí’s effect on dysmenorrhea.

  • Women's Health

    Dysmenorrhea

    Açaí is a traditional remedy for dysmenorrhea, and there is preliminary evidence that some anthocyanins found in açaí may help with dysmenorrhea symptoms.
    Dysmenorrhea
    ×
     

    Açaí is reported to be a traditional remedy for dysmenorrhea. There is preliminary evidence that anthocyanins from bilberry, some of which are also found in açaí, may help with dysmenorrhea symptoms.12 However, there have been no clinical trials investigating açaí’s effect on dysmenorrhea.

  • Heart and Circulatory Health

    Anemia

    Açaí, which contains small amounts of iron, has been traditionally used to help treat anemia.
    Anemia
    ×
     

    Açaí contains iron (approximately 1.5 to 5 mg per 3.5 ounces of fruit).13 Although it has been traditionally used to help treat anemia, the amount of iron in açaí is not likely to be abundant or absorbable enough to have a significant effect.

  • Immune System Support

    Fever

    Roasted, crushed açaí seeds, consumed as tea, are a traditional remedy for fever.
    Fever
    ×
    Roasted, crushed açaí seeds, consumed as tea, are a traditional remedy for fever.
What Are Star Ratings?
×
Reliable and relatively consistent scientific data showing a substantial health benefit.
Contradictory, insufficient, or preliminary studies suggesting a health benefit or minimal health benefit.
For an herb, supported by traditional use but minimal or no scientific evidence. For a supplement, little scientific support.

Our proprietary “Star-Rating” system was developed to help you easily understand the amount of scientific support behind each supplement in relation to a specific health condition. While there is no way to predict whether a vitamin, mineral, or herb will successfully treat or prevent associated health conditions, our unique ratings tell you how well these supplements are understood by the medical community, and whether studies have found them to be effective for other people.

For over a decade, our team has combed through thousands of research articles published in reputable journals. To help you make educated decisions, and to better understand controversial or confusing supplements, our medical experts have digested the science into these three easy-to-follow ratings. We hope this provides you with a helpful resource to make informed decisions towards your health and well-being.

Temp Title
×
Temp Text

Traditional Use (May Not Be Supported by Scientific Studies)

Açaí juice is a major dietary component of Brazilian diets, especially in the Pará region. It is often eaten at breakfast with cassava meal (manioc) or with tapioca and sugar. The açaí fruit is rich in nutrients and is found in many Brazilian prepared foods. The fruit is most popularly used to make juice, but is also found in ice cream, popsicles, and various desserts.

Açaí seeds can be crushed to produce a green oil that has been used as a folk remedy for scrofula (a type of tuberculosis). The roasted, crushed seeds, consumed as tea, are a traditional remedy for fever. Tea made from the root is a folk remedy for jaundice and anemia. Tea made from the grated fruit rind has been used topically as a wash for skin ulcers. Boiled preparations of açaí root have been used traditionally to treat many diseases, including diabetes, hepatitis, malaria, kidney disease, and dysmenorrhea (menstrual pain).

No clinical trials of açaí for the prevention or treatment of any health condition have been published in the medical literature.

References

1. de Moura R, Resende A. Cardiovascular and Metabolic Effects of Acai, an Amazon Plant. J Cardiovasc Pharmacol 2016;68:19–26.

2. Udani J, Singh B, Singh V, et al. Effects of Acai (Euterpe oleracea Mart.) berry preparation on metabolic parameters in a healthy overweight population: a pilot study. Nutr J 2011;10:45.

3. Kim H, Simbo S, Fang C, et al. Acai (Euterpe oleracea Mart.) beverage consumption improves biomarkers for inflammation but not glucose- or lipid-metabolism in individuals with metabolic syndrome in a randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled clinical trial. Food Funct 2018;9:3097–103.

4. Udani J, Singh B, Singh V, et al. Effects of Acai (Euterpe oleracea Mart.) berry preparation on metabolic parameters in a healthy overweight population: a pilot study. Nutr J 2011;10:45.

5. de Bem G, Costa C, Santos I, et al. Antidiabetic effect of Euterpe oleracea Mart. (acai) extract and exercise training on high-fat diet and streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats: A positive interaction. PLoS One 2018;13:e0199207.

6. de Bem G, da Costa C, da Silva Cristino Cordeiro V, et al. Euterpe oleracea Mart. (acai) seed extract associated with exercise training reduces hepatic steatosis in type 2 diabetic male rats. J Nutr Biochem 2018;52:70–81.

7. Pala D, Barbosa P, Silva C, et al. Acai (Euterpe oleracea Mart.) dietary intake affects plasma lipids, apolipoproteins, cholesteryl ester transfer to high-density lipoprotein and redox metabolism: A prospective study in women. Clin Nutr 2018;37:618–23.

8. Udani J, Singh B, Singh V, et al. Effects of Acai (Euterpe oleracea Mart.) berry preparation on metabolic parameters in a healthy overweight population: a pilot study. Nutr J 2011;10:45.

9. Alqurashi R, Galante L, Rowland I, et al. Consumption of a flavonoid-rich acai meal is associated with acute improvements in vascular function and a reduction in total oxidative status in healthy overweight men. Am J Clin Nutr 2016;104:1227–35.

10. da Silva Cristino Cordeiro V, de Bem G, da Costa C, et al. Euterpe oleracea Mart. seed extract protects against renal injury in diabetic and spontaneously hypertensive rats: role of inflammation and oxidative stress. Eur J Nutr 2018;57:817–32.

11. Colombo D and Vescovini R: Controlled clinical trial of anthocyanosides from Vaccinium myrtillus in primary dysmenorrhea. G Ital Obstet Ginecol 1985;7:1033-8.

12. Colombo D and Vescovini R: Controlled clinical trial of anthocyanosides from Vaccinium myrtillus in primary dysmenorrhea. G Ital Obstet Ginecol 1985;7:1033-8.

13. Yuyama LKO, Dias RR, Nagahama D, et al. Acai ( Euterpe oleracea Mart.) and camu-camu (Myrciaria dubia (H.B.K.) Mc Vaugh), do they possess anti-anemic action? Acta Amazonica2002;32:625-33.

Copyright © 2020 TraceGains, Inc. All rights reserved.

Learn more about TraceGains, the company.

The information presented by TraceGains is for informational purposes only. It is based on scientific studies (human, animal, or in vitro), clinical experience, or traditional usage as cited in each article. The results reported may not necessarily occur in all individuals. For many of the conditions discussed, treatment with prescription or over the counter medication is also available. Consult your doctor, practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements or before making any changes in prescribed medications. Information expires December 2020.

Copyright © 2020 TraceGains, Inc. All rights reserved.

The information presented by TraceGains is for informational purposes only. It is based on scientific studies (human, animal, or in vitro), clinical experience, or traditional usage as cited in each article. The results reported may not necessarily occur in all individuals. Self-treatment is not recommended for life-threatening conditions that require medical treatment under a doctor's care. For many of the conditions discussed, treatment with prescription or over the counter medication is also available. Consult your doctor, practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements or before making any changes in prescribed medications. Information expires December 2020.