Research discovers a possible Leukemia Cure in the Acai Berry

A recent University of Florida study has demonstrated the cancer fighting benefits of an extract from the acai berry. This extract has proven effective on cancer cells which have been unaffected by other therapies. This is only the first of many planned studies on the effects of acai berries on cancer.

In this test, leukemia cells were exposed to acai berry extract, with the surprising result that 86%of the cancer cells self-destructed. Acai berries were already known as one of the best sources of antioxidant compounds, but this study's findings are truly extraordinary. An assistant professor at the University of Florida (in the Institute of Food and Agricultural Services) was able to confirm for us that this figure of 86% was indeed the case.

There are other fruits that have antioxidants that may be able to kill leukemia cells. However, all research is preliminary because there have to be other influences factored in the process. Still the percentages are quite impressive.

The Australian public has quickly jumped on the acai bandwagon, with great popularity for a diet rich in tropical fruits such as acai, noni, goji and mangosteen. There are quite a large number of ongoing promotions for juice products made from these fruits. Many of these fruits have been found to be high in antioxidants.

A Brisbane, Australia study from March of this year researched the differences between antioxidant compounds found in fruits and fruit juices and those present in olive leaves. While this study concluded that olive leaves contain some antioxidant properties, the studies performed on acai berries have had far more conclusive results.

The most interesting of these studies are, of course, the ones which have been done on fruits and cancer. U.S. researchers are working tirelessly to find a cure for cancer, especially leukemia. Australia is doing the same in regard to cancer research. Leukemia is the most common disease related cause of death in children aged 20 and younger worldwide. For this reason, leukemia research is a priority for many nations around the globe.

The research done thus far is very rudimentary and more studies must be done to learn more about the properties of these fruits in fighting cancer cells. The acai berry alone contains somewhere between 50 and 75 compounds, many of which are relatively unknown. The acai berry is extremely perishable, which makes it a difficult subject for study.

Acai berries are roughly the same size as a blueberry and are dark purple when ripe. They contain a single seed and decompose rapidly if not frozen or used straightaway. Native to the Amazon River basin, freezing these berries for a long trip is not always a viable option.

To transport to Australia, acai powder is the best alternative. This powder is produced by dehydrating and freeze drying acai pulp. Far easier and cheaper to export, the powder still gives all of the health benefits of the fresh berries. This powder is used to make various nutritional supplements and as an ingredient in various foods.

Although studies are only preliminary for now, the hope that one day leukemia and other cancers will be cured is still alive. The sad fact is that leukemia strikes more children than adults. For the children who suffer from this disease, the day that such a cure is found will be a great day indeed.

By Marcus C. Evans