açaí

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açaí

(ä'säē`), tree, Euterpe oleracea, of the family Arecaceae (palmpalm,
common name for members of the Palmae, a large family of chiefly tropical trees, shrubs, and vines. Most species are treelike, characterized by a crown of compound leaves, called fronds, terminating a tall, woody, unbranched stem.
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 family) and its fruit, grown chiefly in Pará state in the Amazon region of Brazil. The trees can grow to 60 ft (18 m). the small, round, dark purple fruits are typically 1-2 in. (1.3 cm) in diameter. Initially collected from the wild, açaí is now cultivated on plantations; the tree and other trees in the genus Euterpe are also grown for hearts of palm. The pulp of the açaí fruit, botanically a drupe, or stone fruit, is often sweetened and frozen. An important part of the local diet for centuries, it has since 2000 enjoyed growing popularity as a dietary supplement. Although studies have shown that the fruit is a source of antioxidants, claims about specific health benefits are unproven.
References in periodicals archive ?
Apenas na polpa de acai o teor de acucares totais foi significativo (p [less than or equal to] 0,05), apresentando reducao de 1,92 para 1,86 mg de glicose 100 [g.
At this time, there is a dearth of scientific evidence proving health effects in humans from consuming acai.
She said she began the project with the help of undergraduate student Rosy Gomez, and narrowed her focus after initial success with acai.
Acai fruit, also referred to as the 'Ultimate Super-Food' or 'Brazilian Berry', comes from the rich Brazilian rainforest.
Frank Phelan, manager of The Living Earth health food store on Chandler Street in Worcester, said acai, in juice, powder, and pill form, is an extremely popular item there.
Timing is of the essence in the acai trade, for the berry is highly perishable once it has been picked.
After consuming a blend of acai polyphenols, researchers recorded a three-fold increase in antioxidant capacity in the blood of healthy human volunteers.
The acai berry boasts both a great taste and healthy antioxidant properties, and despite being consumed by Amazonians for centuries, its popularity in the USA in drinks has only boomed over the last three years.
Following is a brief review of acai and the nutrition claims made in favor of this supplement.