Are Acai Bowls Healthy Or Not? Nutrition, Calories And How To Make It
Are Acai Bowls Healthy Or Not? In recent years, acai bowls have become one of the most popular health products on the market.
It is made from a puree of acai, a fruit grown in Central and South America. And it is served as a smoothie in a bowl or glass with fruit, nuts, seeds, or granola.
Known for their vibrant color, creamy texture, and versatility, acai bowls are touted as an antioxidant-rich superfood. On the other hand, treats can be high in calories and sugar. And there are some argue that they can do more harm than good when it comes to your health.
In this article, we discuss advantages and disadvantages of acai cups. And also to determine Are Acai Bowls Healthy Or Not in detail.
The nutritional profile of your acai berry varies depending on the ingredients used. However, most bowls are high in fiber, antioxidants, and micronutrients like vitamin C, manganese, and potassium.
For reference, a 170-gram bowl of acai may contain the following nutrients:
- Calories: 211
- Fat: 6 grams
- Protein: 3 grams
- Carbs: 35 grams
- Sugar: 19 grams
- Fiber: 7 grams
However, commercial varieties are often large servings and contain upto 600 calories and 75 grams of sugar per serving. It depends on the ingredients you choose.
In addition to acai, acai bowls often contain other fruits such as strawberries, blueberries, and bananas.
These fruits are an excellent source of vitamin C and manganese. Which act as antioxidants that protect cells from oxidative damage caused by harmful compounds known as free radicals.
They are also rich in potassium, an important nutrient. It regulates blood pressure levels and protects against conditions such as age-related bone loss and kidney stones.
Rich In Antioxidants
Are Acai Bowls Healthy Or Not – Acai is rich in antioxidants that help neutralize free radicals, preventing cell damage.
Test-tube studies show that acai berries are rich in plant compounds known as anthocyanins. That may include certain types such as cyanidin-3-glycoside and cyanidin-3-rutinoside.
In one study, consumption of acai pulp and applesauce increased blood antioxidant levels in 12 healthy adults within 24 hours.
Human and animal studies show that acai berries may be associated with lower cholesterol levels, better brain function, and reduced growth of colon cancer cells due to their antioxidant content.
Rich In Sugar And Calories
Acai bowls usually contain additional ingredients such as fruits, nuts, seeds, and muesli.
While these ingredients are nutritious on their own, it’s easy to overdo the ingredients and turn a healthy snack into a high-calorie meal.
In addition, acai bowls purchased from both the store and the restaurant are often sold in large portions, sometimes containing two to three servings in one cup.
Eating more calories than you burn each day can contribute to weight gain over time.
In addition, commercially prepared acai bowls are high in sugar. In addition to weight gain, consuming too much added sugar can contribute to liver problems, heart disease, and type 2 diabetes.
The most recent Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend limiting daily intake of added sugar to no more than 12 teaspoons for those on a 2,000 calorie diet, which equates to about 48 grams of sugar.
Just one 170-gram bowl of acai contains about 11 grams of added sugar, or about 23% of the total daily value.
How To Make An Acai Bowl?
Are Acai Bowls Healthy Or Not – One of the best ways to take advantage of the many potential health benefits of the acai bowl is to cook it yourself.
Start by mixing unsweetened frozen acai puree or acai powder with a little water or milk to make the base of an acai bowl.
Then add the toppings of your choice, like chopped fruit, cocoa nibs, or coconut flakes. Adding your favorite nuts, seeds, or nut butters to boost the protein content of your bowl. And it will keep you satisfied longer.
However, keep your ingredients in moderation and limit your high-calorie options if you want to lose weight.
You can also try mixing some greens like kale or spinach into the bottom of your acai bowl. It is done to boost its nutritional value even more.
Finally, remember to keep track of your portion sizes to control your sugar, carbohydrate, and calorie intake.
The Bottom Line
Acai bowls are made with Acai berries and often additional fruit, and ingredients. Such as fruit, nuts, seeds, and muesli are then added.
While rich in nutrients and antioxidants, commercial varieties are often sold in large serving sizes. And it can be high in sugar and calories.
Making your own acai bowl at home will help you cut down on your portion sizes. And it is a great way to control what you put on your plate.