We are aware of the many health benefits of acai berry. However, not many are aware of the side effects of acai berry.
Yes, this South American native berry has a few side effects too. But before we delve deep into the side effects, let us discuss what acai berry is.
If you don’t know what Acai berry is, let us explain. The Acai palm tree is native to the northern region of South America and found mostly in Brazil and other African regions. The reddish-purple berries are important for Amazonian tribal people and Brazilians. These berries grow in green bunches with a single seed inside and turn purple as they mature like grapes, and they have an oily coating. The Acai fruit puree is commonly used to make jellies, desserts, and ice-creams.
The health benefits of acai berries are several. They are rich in antioxidants and are widely used to prepare medicines that treat digestion and skin-related issues (1). Though the unprocessed acai fruit juice may not negatively affect you, the additional ingredients like toxic fillers, caffeine, tobacco, and sugar in acai berry supplements may make it harmful to your health. So, what exactly are the side effects of acai berry? Can you consume it raw? Can acai berry supplements be harmful to you? This article answers all these questions. So, let us now check out the 13 side effects of acai berry you should be aware of. Keep reading.
Diarrhea, headache, dizziness, lower insulin levels, and inflammation, especially of the mouth, tongue, throat and lips.
Jaundice and liver injury, plaque buildup, severe cardiac problems, and blood thinning.
Acai berry supplements that contain garlic, ginkgo, and feverfew may interact with blood-thinning medications.
When To See A Doctor
In case of diarrhea, respiratory problems (especially if you have pollen allergies), and very low blood sugar levels (especially if you have diabetes).
In This Article
Some Of The Acai Berry Side Effects Are:
1. Consuming processed Acai berry supplements can lead to the buildup of plaque and toxins in the body, which can cause a host of health problems ranging from acne to Candida to fatigue.
2. Acai berry supplements contain herbs like garlic, gingko and Feverfew, which can cause the blood to thin, leading to severe bleeding (2). In fact, any health supplement containing these ingredients must be avoided.
3. Echinacea, a herb used in Acai supplement, can cause liver injury and allergic reactions (3).
4. Excess consumption of Acai berry enhances the effect of vasodilator in the body, causing significant reduction in the blood pressure (4). This can sometimes become fatal, especially for people who suffer from cardiac problems.
Paul Claybrook, a certified nutritionist, says ”There is no official amount of acai berries that constitutes a daily serving. Eating too many is not a concern aside from potentially getting diarrhea.”
5. People who are underweight should avoid consuming Acai berry as it may suppress appetite and promote weight loss. However, this research has been done only on flies, and more studies on humans are warranted (5).
“It’s probably not a good idea for people that take COX-1 or COX-2 Inhibitor drugs to consume acai since it will reduce their effectiveness,” opines Paul Claybrook, a certified nutritionist.
7. Acai berry may cause the transmission of Chagas disease (8). It contains the remnants of tritomines- a blood sucking insect native to South America, which carries a parasite called Trypanosoma cruzi (9). It is this parasite which causes Chagas disease.
8. Eating Acai berries may cause swelling of the mouth, lips, tongue and throat. It may also cause wheezing or other respiratory problems.
9. Some people who are affected by pollen allergies may have trouble with Acai products. People suffering from pollen allergies have reported that their allergies were aggravated by Acai berries. Visit your doctor immediately if the problems persist.
10. Lactating women should avoid consuming Acai supplements as it can be harmful to the infant. However, more research is needed in this regard.
11. People, who are allergic to Acai or any other plant in the Arecaceae family, should refrain from consuming Acai berries (10).
12. Acai berry can also cause irritation in the colon and intestinal tract, causing diarrhea.
13. Other side effects of Acai berry include headache, dizziness, lower insulin levels, increased weight loss, and strokes (5).
Although acai berry has no known medication interactions, you should still consume it with caution if you are on other medications. Consult with a doctor to avoid complications.
Infographic: How To Reduce The Risk Of Acai Berry Side Effects
Most acai berry products today are gaining popularity for their health benefits. However, as we saw, these berries and their products may also cause certain adverse effects. Does this mean you have to stop consuming them altogether? Maybe not. There are a few ways to reduce the risk of side effects due to acai berries – and we discuss the same in the infographic below. Check it out.
Acai berries have been used to prepare medications that treat skin and digestive disorders. The health and nutrition benefits of acai berries are numerous. However, acai berry supplements may cause some side effects. Excess consumption may lead to the buildup of plaque and toxins in the body, severe bleeding, liver injury, allergic reactions, hypotension, jaundice, and mouth swelling. Hence, consume these berries in moderation, in their original form, to avoid their adverse effects.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can acai berry cause stomach problems?
Although acai berries may not directly trigger any stomach problems, their supplements may cause gas, bloating, and gastrointestinal discomfort.
Does acai make you poop?
Yes, acai berries are loaded with fiber that can help in easing constipation and make you poop.
Is acai healthy for pregnant women?
Acai berries are considered safe for consumption during pregnancy. However, it is better to consult your doctor before introducing anything new to your diet during this time.
Can acai cause acid reflux?
No, acai does not cause acid reflux. Moreover, they are classified as alkaline fruits and provide relief from acid reflux.
Does acai cause inflammation?
No, acai does not cause inflammation. This fruit is known for its potent anti-inflammatory properties.
Is acai berry nightshade?
No acai berry is not nightshade.
- Acai berries are reddish-purple berries found in the regions of Brazil and Africa. They have an oily coating and a single seed inside.
- Consuming acai berries in excess may significantly lower blood pressure to undesirable levels.
- Acai berries are harmful to people with pollen allergies. They shouldn’t be consumed by those who are allergic to the fruit or any other member of the Arecaceae family of plants.
- Acai berries can swell the mouth, lips, tongue, and throat. They may also result in wheezing or other respiratory issues.
- Echinacea is a herb used in acai supplements that can cause liver injury.
Acai berries are popularly known as a type of superfood. However, overconsumption of the berries can lead to side effects. Watch this video to know more.
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- Açai (Euterpe oleracea Mart.)—A phytochemical and pharmacological assessment of the species’ health claims
- Gingko biloba: a case report of herbal medicine and bleeding postoperatively from a laparoscopic cholecystectomy
- Cardiovascular and Metabolic Effects of Açaí, an Amazon Plant
- Açai Palm Fruit (Euterpe oleracea Mart.) Pulp Improves Survival of Flies on a High Fat Diet
- Acai Berry Induced Cholestatic Jaundice
- Oral Transmission of Chagas Disease by Consumption of Açaí Palm Fruit, Brazil
- Survival in vitro and virulence of Trypanosoma cruzi in açaí pulp in experimental acute Chagas disease
- Herbs at a Glance: Acai