Does Acai Berry Juice Help You Lose Weight?

Photo by: Flickr
Photo by: Flickr

Acai berry juice is the latest media-driven weight loss miracle that has people flocking to health food stores in search of an easy way to shed pounds, but are these claims really valid?  Acai (pronounced ah-sigh-ee) juice has been around for years and has never really been known to provide weight loss benefits.  That isn’t to say it is not without value, quite the contrary in fact. Acai berry is a fantastic source of natural essential fatty acids, electrolytes, protein, vitamins A, B1 and E, and amino acids.  It can help balance your Ph to a more alkaline level (a healthier state of being) and act as an anti-inflammatory agent (inflammation is thought to be a major cause of disease overtime, including heart disease and cancer). The main benefit to acai berry, however, is its antioxidant power.

Antioxidants neutralize free radicals, those little devils swimming around in your body that cause oxidation (rust is a common form of oxidation) which damages cells and overtime can lead to diseases of all kinds. Dark, rich fruits tend to be high in antioxidants and acai berry is extremely high in antioxidants, having a soaring ORAC score, which stands for Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity. When it comes to acai and the other “super fruits,” those being mangosteen, goji, and noni, claims have been made that they have cured everything from arthritis to high cholesterol to impotence but curiously enough, weight loss has not been a highly touted claim.

It happens a lot in the supplement industry: a great product becomes a “cure-all” for everything (another example is the idea that a colon cleanse is all you need to do to lose weight). It is true that acai juice can help to detoxify your body and would probably be a welcome addition to your supplement regimen, but do this for your overall health-do not expect weight loss miracles. To lose weight you must first and always focus on healthy lifestyle changes regarding diet and exercising. Even if acai berry juice does increase metabolism and/or suppress appetite, this effect will be mild if anything. No supplement, no matter what claims are being made by the manufacturer, will lose weight for you.  One thing acai juice can do for you, however, is raise your energy levels. This benefit may indirectly help you lose weight by enhancing the physical vigor needed to exercise, not to mention just getting through the day.

If you are interested in the particulars about acai berries, they are a purple colored fruit found in the Amazonian rainforest. It is a highly nutritious and powerful fruit packed with nutrients, including a particular class of flavonoids called anthocyandins, which is the source of its antioxidant power. The ORAC value of acai berries is among the very highest in the edible berry world.  If you decide to drink acai berry juice make sure of what you are getting. Many drinks are juice blends with some acai and many other juices, not necessarily a bad thing. Read the label and know what you are getting. A quality product will have a detailed label, breaking down how much of the content is acai and how much is other juices. Pure acai is also available but will be more expensive. Go to a health food/supplement store in your area or find a good online retailer.

To conclude, I certainly suggest you give acai berry juice a try but be careful to manage your expectations, especially regarding weight loss. Acai can be a tremendous boon to your overall health, but you will still need to exercise and manage healthy eating if you want to lose weight.  These are the habits that will ensure not only a healthy weight, but excellent overall health as well.