Archive for the ‘Acai Berries’ Category

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Acai Berry and Vitamin D Fight Heart Disease

July 29, 2011
Millions are Deficient in Circualting Vitamin D Levels

Millions are Deficient in Circulating Vitamin D Levels

Critical research into the importance of vitamin D on vascular health was carried out at the Emory University School of Medicine and reported to the American College of Cardiology. Researchers provided evidence that increasing levels of vitamin D circulating in the blood is essential to improved cardiovascular health and dramatically lowered risk of heart disease and heart attack.

The study included 554 adults with an average age of 47 years. Participants had a typical vitamin D level of 32 ng/ml, with 14% testing as deficient (less than 20 ng/ml) and 33% were insufficient (less than 30 ng/ml). While standard medical practice considers 30 ng/ml to be an ideal minimum level, most natural health experts advise attaining a 25(OH)D reading between 50 and 70 ng/ml for proper cell saturation of the prohormone.

Vitamin D Improves Arterial Elasticity to Prevent Atherosclerosis

Vitamin D Relaxes Arteries to Prevent Against Heart Attack

Vitamin D Relaxes Arteries to Prevent Against Heart Attack

Researchers monitored the ability of the participants` blood vessels to relax by inflating and removing a blood pressure cuff from their arms. Blood was then allowed to flow back into the arm and the degree of elasticity measured by means of an ultrasound. They found that arterial elasticity was directly related to the blood level measured for vitamin D saturation. Those individuals with the lowest or deficient readings experienced a much higher degree of hardening.

Participants with the highest readings experienced significantly improved vascular elasticity and lower blood pressure readings. The study author, Dr. Al Mheid noted “There is already a lot known about how vitamin D could be acting here”. Regarding mechanisms responsible for the cardiovascular health improvements Dr. Mheid concluded, “It could be strengthening endothelial cells and the muscles surrounding the blood vessels. It could also be reducing the level of angiotensin, a hormone that drives increased blood pressure, or regulating inflammation.”

Acai Berry Juice Protects Against Arterial Hardening

Acai Berry Protects Against Arterial Hardening, Lowers Heart Disease Risk

Acai Berry Protects Against Arterial Hardening, Lowers Heart Disease Risk

Research results published in the journal Atherosclerosis provide evidence that acai juice provides powerful anti-inflammatory benefits that protect the delicate coronary arteries from hardening. Researchers found that acai juice protects against the development of atherosclerosis by inhibiting pro-inflammatory compounds known as cytokines that promote arterial thickening and the beginning stage of heart disease.

The juice was shown to lower levels of lipid peroxidation, a process that causes normal LDL cholesterol to combine with oxygen and incorporate with other materials to become arterial plaque. This study found that drinking acai juice altered the expression of 17 genes that contribute to LDL cholesterol oxidation. Health-minded individuals will want maintain proper vitamin D blood levels and drink 4 to 8-ounces of unsweetened acai juice each day (or an equivalent standardized extract) to dramatically lower the health risks associated with arterial hardening.

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Purple Vegetables and Fruits Halt Brain Aging

January 17, 2011

(Article first published as The Color Purple Helps Prevent Brain Aging and Dementia on Technorati.)

The Color Purple Can Help Prevent Brain Aging

The Color Purple Can Help Prevent Brain Aging

The world of natural science is rapidly painting a clear picture that helps us better understand the underlying mechanism behind devastating diseases including Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and Multiple Sclerosis and conditions that lead to preventable brain aging. Researchers are revealing that these illnesses develop as a result of poor dietary and lifestyle choices and can be prevented by adopting a raw, organic diet including plenty of purple colored fruits and vegetables.

Study Implicates Unbound Iron with Declining Brain Health

Excess iron in the blood is associated with an increased risk for heart disease and heart attack and new research now highlights the metal with a decline in brain health. The result of a study published in the journal Archives of Toxicology shows that the brain is particularly sensitive to unbound iron that crosses the blood-brain barrier to cause free radical damage as well as toxins known as hydroxyl radicals.

Purple Berries and Green Tea are Excellent Iron Chelators

Green Tea is Known to Halt Dementia Including Alzheimer's

Green Tea is Known to Halt Dementia Including Alzheimer's

In order to protect yourself from these damaging iron particles it’s necessary to ensure a healthy intake of binding nutrients known as iron chelators. Purple fruits and vegetables are a particularly potent source of compounds that bind tightly with iron to neutralize their effect on the brain. Blueberries, acai berries and green tea have been cited as excellent foods that help protect the brain.

This study underscores the importance of avoiding red meat as a source of unbound iron in the diet. Most of the iron in red meat is unbound and freely released into the blood where it can wreak havoc throughout the body. Conversely, vegetarian sources of iron such as leafy greens and spinach are tightly bound with fiber and do not elevate iron levels. The study author noted that the antioxidant effect of vitamin C is negated with high levels of unbound iron and is dramatically improved with a diet high in vegetables and fruits.

Acai Berry Extract Shown to Improve Brain Housekeeping

Acai Berries Directly Limit Brain Plaque Formation

Acai Berries Directly Limit Brain Plaque Formation

A significant pathway that leads to declining brain health occurs when the normal cellular housekeeping cycle is disrupted in a process known as autophagy. Researchers from the USDA`s Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging have found that berry extracts can enhance the process in aging adults in part due to their powerful antioxidant properties.

Anthocyanins in the skins of the berry protect against the pro-inflammatory agents including COX-2 and TNF-alpha. The researchers conclude ‘these results suggest that acai may contribute to ‘health span’ in aging, as it is able to combat some of the inflammatory and oxidative mediators of aging at the cellular level’. Acai berries can be consumed in their natural form, as a concentrated drink or as a supplemented extract.

The purple compounds found in the skins of many fruits and vegetables are important to brain health as they are able to cross the critical blood-brain barrier. Extensive research demonstrates that these chemical structures help to reduce brain inflammation and bind with iron to protect sensitive brain cells. Be certain to include a variety of purple foods to naturally protect your brain and lower your risk from devastating diseases that threaten your ability to walk, learn, think and make new memories.

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Acai And Berry Family Protect Against Brain Aging and Heart Disease

December 25, 2010

(Article first published as Acai and the Berry Family Promote Health for the New Year on Technorati.)

Acai Berries are Potent Antioxidants

Acai Berries are Potent Antioxidants

Each day our cells are bombarded with negatively charged ions known as free radicals that cause damage leading to accelerated aging and increased risk of heart disease, cancer and dementia. It`s estimated that each of our trillion or so cells is assaulted by up to 10,000 free radicals each day.

This damage must be repaired by our body to prevent disease and slow the aging process. Free radicals are a natural part of metabolism and represent the byproducts of respiration, digestion and physical activity. Fortunately nutritional research has confirmed a host of natural compounds found in berries. Start your New Year off on a healthy note with a bowl full of tasty berries.

The Free Radical Theory of Aging

Berries are Shown to Reduce Signs of Aging

Berries are Shown to Reduce Signs of Aging

One well accepted theory of aging explains how free radicals cause cellular degeneration and damage to nuclear DNA. As we age our ability to repair this damage becomes limited due to poor diet and lifestyle choices over the course of decades. Researchers have found that as we age, as many as one in three proteins have become dysfunctional due to free radical damage.

Proteins are the backbone of life and essential to health. Loss of protein function results in many of the outward signs of aging including wrinkles and grey hair and leads to cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes and dementia. Any nutrient that can neutralize free radicals will help to lower risk of disease and extend natural life.

Acai Berry is the Top Ranked Antioxidant Food

Acai berry has been shown to exhibit the highest antioxidant capacity of all natural food sources demonstrating the ability to attract and neutralize free radicals before they can cause cellular damage. Scientists at the USDA Human Nutrition Research Center have developed a standardized index known as ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) designed to measure the ability of antioxidants to absorb free radicals. Acai berry has the highest recorded ORAC score of 18,400 providing validation for its ability to provide protection to cellular mitochondria that are most susceptible to free radical damage.

The results of a study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry shows that people who supplemented with acai berry increased the antioxidant capacity of their blood threefold. Supplementing with acai provides a significant shield to our genetic foundation as well as the protein structures that we rely on for disease free health and natural aging.

Blueberries Improve Cognitive Health

Blueberries rank in the middle of the ORAC spectrum at 3,200 yet have been shown to enhance cognitive function due to their unique ability to penetrate the blood-brain barrier. Blueberries target the area of the brain associated with learning and memory and protect neurons by absorbing free radicals that limit the activity of neurotransmitters and electrical impulses necessary for optimal brain function.

Bilberries are Good for the Heart

Bilberries Improve Heart Health

Bilberries Improve Heart Health

A relative of the blueberry, bilberries have a demonstrated efficacy in lowering risk factors for heart disease. This berry significantly inhibits the angiotensin-converting enzyme that contributes to blood vessel constriction and high blood pressure. A major class of drugs has been developed by Big Pharma to accomplish this same task with many dangerous side effects. Bilberries are powerful antioxidants that naturally lower blood pressure and improve vascular health.

Acai and virtually all members of the berry family are potent antioxidants that promote vibrant health by neutralizing age-inducing free radicals. Health conscious individuals will want to include a variety of different colored berries as part of their diet to reap a multitude of life extending benefits and start the New Year with vibrant health.