Acai Berry Slimming Tablets

The acai palm (euterpe oleracea) that grows in Central and South America, produces a small purple berry, which has become a popular ingredient in western detoxifying juices and slimming tablets. It’s been heralded as a super food, marketed for its fat-burning properties, said to stimulate weight loss, and touted as a powerful antioxidant that may help reverse the signs of aging. Are these claims based on fact or wishful thinking?

Is Acai Berry a Super Food?

There’s no doubt that acai is a highly nutritious food, and in Brazil, especially in the northern region of Pará, acai fruit pulp is a staple part of the local diet. It’s served in various ways, usually with rapadura or panela – which is natural sugar cane juice that’s hardened into a block then rasped into fine shreds and used like brown sugar. Acai fruit, especially it’s pulp, is a popular way to flavor tapioca dishes and also consumed as a fresh drink.

In southern Brazil, acai has become a flavor for ice cream and other sweet treats. It’s eaten in the regions where it grows because its readily available, and in some cases, is one of the main sources for nutrition. This makes it a super food for certain local Brazilian and South American peoples because without it, their diets may be deficient in essential nutrients and amino acids. In that way, acai is indeed a super food. But…is acai a super food for westerners who want to detox, lose weight or reverse the aging process?

Processing Acai

In places where the fresh acai pulp isn’t readily available, the purple berries are dried and converted to powder. These powdered preparations are then converted into drinks or slimming tablets and shipped abroad. Whole berry pulp, with everything including the skin, is said to be rich in carbohydrates and proteins as well as small amounts of vitamin C. It offers a good source of natural fiber (if the whole berry pulp is consumed) and provides calcium, vitamin A, iron and amino acids such as aspartic, glutamic and linoleic acid amongst others. The problem is that much of the nutritional value, in terms of amino acids, disappears if the pulp is heated and therefore commercial juices, slimming tablets and powders may not contain the goodness that the fresh fruit pulp delivers. Some companies have therefore begun selling freeze-dried pulp and even frozen acai berry concentrate, nevertheless, as with anything that undergoes a manufacturing processed, is transported long distances and subjected to commercial packaging and marketing, there’s always a questing of how much nutritional value remains in the final product.

How Effective are Acai Slimming Tablets as a means to Lose Weight?

Whether the slimming tablets, powders, dietary supplements or acai juice will in fact be of any benefit, will depend on how the raw fruit was processed. For example, it’s reported that freeze-dried acai berry retains most of its nutritional value, however, there’s another cheaper and more common means of processing called “spray-drying”, and this causes substantial nutritional loss and therefore won’t provide a high quality powder, juice concentrate or slimming capsule.

However nutritious the fruit may be in its natural state, and however carefully acai may have been processed in order to retain its nutritional value, the bottom line is that there is no concrete evidence or independent clinical studies to support the claims that acai berry slimming tablets, powders, juices or supplements actually aid in weight loss, detoxifying the body or fighting aging. In fact, one of the only reasons anyone outside of Central and South America has even heard of the magical properties of this fruit is due to a somewhat unscrupulous multi-level marketing campaign that began about five years ago.

Comparing Other Fruits to Acai Berry

Investigators have attempted to prove (or disprove) that the juice, slimming pills and other supplements containing acai berry, may have antioxidant capabilities that other types of fruits or berries don’t offer – making acai a super food. What were the results? While certain tests showed that acai berries do offer antioxidant properties, may help with blood cholesterol levels, and offer nutrition, they’re not considered richer in these properties than blueberry, black cherry or concord grape. Acai contains slightly higher antioxidant properties than apple and orange juices. That leads us to another question.

Do any antioxidant fruit drinks, concentrated slimming pills and dietary supplements actually have an effect on the body’s aging process or how it metabolizes fat?

While antioxidants / polyphenols (also called antinutrients) theoretically appear to affect cellular signaling and act as possible anti-inflammatory agents, it’s unknown if or how the body assimilates / processes polyphenols in order to alter the effects of aging and metabolism. It appears that most studies are still at the “lab rat” stage and require much more investigation. Why? Because polyphenols are part of a plant’s defense mechanism – what inhibits certain nutrient absorption in a PLANT – which doesn’t necessarily mean that when a human eats this plants with polyphenols it will have the same or similar effect. So, is it worth all the effort to find pure acai pulp, or high quality freeze-dried supplements, or the best and purest acai berry slimming tablets, pills or capsules?

When In Rome….

It seems logical that if you’re in northern Brazil you’ll drink acai juice and eat the foods made with the pulp, but if you happen to reside in North America, Europe or the UK, it may be just as wholesome and nutritious to get a juice extractor and make fresh juices / foods with fruits that are readily available and will be fresh. Try making your own apple, orange, grape, blueberry and black cherry juice, along with a variety of vegetable juices, and perhaps you’ll find that you lose weight and feel better without taking any slimming tablets at all.

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About the editor

Nena Argent, editorial director of EbT magazine since 2009, oversees online editorial content in English and Spanish. She joined EbT after ten years as an investigative journalist in Asia where she researched oriental health, nutrition and beauty treatments. Now based in Europe, she reports on the latest beauty trends, health issues, high-tech medical advancements and state-of-the-art cosmetic procedures from around the world.

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The info in this site doesn't replace consulting with a dermatologist, micropigmentation expert, plastic surgeon or nutritionist prior to undergoing a dietary change or a cosmetic/surgical procedure.