The Purple Berry That KILLS Heart Attacks?
By Kevin DiDonato MS, CSCS, CES
It comes from deep within the jungles of Central and South America.
An unlikely hero emerges from the dark terrain and steamy vegetation.
A deep blue, purple or red berry, which holds the power to change your life forever!
Its name: Acai.
Small, round and full of flavor, the Acai berry could be the answer to fighting inflammation.
But how, you might ask?
Let me tell you how!
The Acai berry is native to Central and South America.
The berry contains anthocyanins which not only give the berry its color, but also enhances its antioxidant capacity.
And to top it all off, Acai berries also have flavonoids, creating a one-two punch for fighting inflammation and damage from free radicals.
The Acai berry is a powerful antioxidant, which can enter into a cell in a fully functional form.
This means less breakdown in your body, and more inflammation and free radical fighting potential.
In fact, the Acai berry may neutralize free radicals. This makes the free radicals stable again, preventing further damage in your body.
And it helps reduce inflammation!
There are numerous cytokines and enzymes that are considered pro-inflammatory.
When they are released from cells, they promote inflammation, which leads to pain and chronic diseases.
As a recap, low-level, chronic inflammation is linked to diseases like heart disease, obesity, diabetes, arthritis and cancer.
The good news: Acai berry may halt inflammation by STOPPING the release and activity of these key enzymes.
In your body, two free radicals can join together to create a super radical. The most potent super radical is superoxide.
When superoxide is high, your body releases a response from either your cells or the immune system.
Your body wants to protect you at all times and by any means possible.
The response your body sends is an antioxidant called superoxide dismutase (SOD). This attacks the superoxide free radical, reducing it to oxygen and hydrogen peroxide.
But you know that no system is PERFECT, and that this system sometimes can FAIL!
The addition of Acai berry helps neutralize superoxide by enhancing the activity of the SOD assay, or the superoxide dismutase enzyme.
This makes YOUR body more efficient at eliminating superoxide when it occurs in YOUR BODY!
But it doesn’t stop there!
There are two other important enzymes which increase pain and inflammation in your body.
The COX 1 and 2 enzyme systems, when activated, INSTIGATE and INCREASE inflammation in YOUR body!
Normally, when activated it creates pain and inflammation. You normally would take a NSAID or two in order to stop the pain and reduce the inflammation.
However, the Acai berry may be able to inhibit this enzyme system from activating, keeping the system in check.
This may help lessen pain and inflammation and help strengthen YOUR immune system and enhance metabolism!
Again, not done though!
Acai And Endothelial Cells
Every vessel in your body is lined with specialized cells called endothelial cells.
Endothelial cells play an important role in the health of your veins and arteries.
This protective layer of cells, like any other cell in your body, can get damaged from increased free radicals and other toxins invading it.
In inflammation, your endothelial cells are exposed to increased free radical damage, which results in increased tissue swelling and fluid accumulation.
One way this happens is by increased sugar in your blood, which may lead to glucose-induced oxidative stress to occur.
This promotes inflammation and prevents blood from flowing smoothly to the rest of your body.
Antioxidants in Acai berry may inhibit damage from glucose-induced oxidation by inhibiting the expression of certain adhesion molecules AND by inhibiting NF-ĸB activation.
Stopping the expression of certain genes and adhesion molecules maintains the health of the endothelial cells.
This reduces YOUR risk of DEVELOPING cardiovascular disease or other chronic inflammatory conditions.
Inflammation can both protect you and start a dangerous process of cell damage or destruction.
Why Acai Is Important
The use of antioxidants can be traced back hundreds of thousands of years, with roots back in Chinese and ancient medicine.
Antioxidants have been used to treat many common ailments such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes.
Today, there is growing research on different fruits and vegetables which hold high antioxidant capacity. The high antioxidant levels may be a key in increasing antioxidants in your body, which may aid the natural defense of the cells which can halt inflammation and the damage created by free radicals.
Acai berry is a berry like no other.
Holding high levels of flavonoids and anthocyanins, this tiny berry packs a one-two punch in reducing cellular damage and possibly decreasing inflammation in your body.
By inhibiting the activity of certain enzyme systems in your body, YOU are helping YOUR body halt the inflammatory response with foods that pack high antioxidant levels.
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