Acaí berries (Euterpe oleracea) grow on acai palm trees, a species of palm tree that can grow over 80ft tall. They are native to Brazil, Peru, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago, growing mostly in the flooded plains and swamps. The purple-black fruit is round, about 1 inch in circumference and grows in branched clusters of 500-900 fruits. Acai's name comes from a local legend in the Amazon River area, and is a Portuguese adaptation of the Tupian word ïwaca'i, meaning fruit that “cries or expels water”. Traditionally a staple food in its native growing areas, acai berries, along with other Amazonian fruits, became more popular outside the region in the mid 1990s.
Acai berries are a rich source of polyphenolic compounds, especially the flavonoids known as anthocyanins, which give the berry its characteristic dark purple color. Acai is high in oleic acid as well as containing palmitic and linoleic fatty acids. Linoleic acid (omega-6) is an Essential Fatty Acid which the body cannot produce and must be obtained through the diet. Acai is high in dietary fiber, contains a moderate amount of amino acids, and is a source of calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, copper, potassium, vitamin C and B complex vitamins.
Available as Freeze Dried and Conventional.
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