Açaí this, Açaí that, Açaí what? If you pay attention to the world of fitness, you’ve likely heard the word “Açaí.” But, why? Açaí is an unassuming small purplish fruit that looks similar to blueberries. Is the Açaí berry worthy of all the hype?

Açaí packs power AND flavor. Açaí is a great source of Vitamin A which supports vision, skin, bones and other tissues. The berries are full of Calcium for bones, muscles (including your steady ticker) and nerve health. They even have protein and Omega 3’s/monounsaturated fat (the “good” kind of fat) that improves blood lipid levels.

Also, the small Açaí berry has tremendous antioxidant properties could help remove potentially damaging oxidizing agents or “free radicals” from your system. Studies are also being done to see if the “phytochemicals” found in the berries (like those found in certain wines and grapes) might boost the circulatory system, nerve function and render anti-cancer benefits.

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It’s easier to pop one in your mouth than to pluck one from a tree. Where, oh where, might Açaí berries be? The answer is “everywhere” these days. While they grow only on Açaí palm trees in certain areas of South and Central America, you’re in luck. The berries can be found frozen, pureed and powdered in many grocery stores. If you can’t find them, ask.

Pureed, Powdered or Popsicle-ed! Try 3 Ways to Eat the Açaí Berry

1) Powerful Powdered Açaí Berry Smoothie

acai berryThis recipe is easily adapted to whatever you happen to have hiding in your fridge. Consider putting in a dollop of yogurt to add a tangy flavor, or a handful of greens to boost the power of this nutrient packed punch.

Blend until smooth:

  • 4 Tablespoons Açaí Powder
  • ½ Cup Strawberries (or Raspberries)
  • 1-2 Bananas (depending on taste)
  • 1 Cup Milk (or water) (Dig deep in your fridge and use what you have. Almond, dairy, and soy will all work. Add honey to sweeten to taste.)

2) Açaí Berry Basic Bowl

This hearty bowl of goodness can infuse you with energy any time of the day. Make it for breakfast, dessert or a midday meal.

Blend until smooth:

  • ½ Banana
  • 8 Ounces Açaí Puree
  • ¼ Cup Blueberries
    (Add honey to sweeten to taste)

Place the mixture in a bowl. And cover with:

  • ½ Sliced Banana
  • ¼ Cup Blueberries
  • ¼ Cup of your favorite Granola

Optional: Sprinkle with Coconut Flakes, Pomegranate Seeds, Almonds or anything else that adds crunch, texture or taste!

3) Açaí Berry Puree Popsicles

These violet beauties will taste delicious when they hit your tongue. Mix and freeze five ingredients together, and you’ve got pick-me-up popsicles waiting to brighten your day.

Blend until smooth:

  • 1 Cup Coconut Water (or plain ‘ol water)
  • ½ Cup Blueberries
  • ⅓ Cup Açaí Puree
  • 1 Banana
  • 2 Tablespoons Citrus Juice (lemon, orange or lime)
    (Add honey to sweeten to taste)

*For a creamier popsicle, add ¼ cup Vanilla Yogurt.

Try the mixture and see if it’s tasty. Add more fruit or sweetener if it doesn’t tickle your tongue. Pour into popsicle molds and freeze until set, at least two hours.

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