The mental health conditions known as eating disorders are: anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa and binging nervosa. Anorexia is related to a “lack of appetite”, bulimia is related to eating great amounts of food in a very short period time and then purging to avoid digestion and potential weight gain and binge eating is related to having time when there is uncontrolled, impulsive and constant eating with no purging. Eating disorders have reached a mental health emergency for teens and young adults.
One of the questions asked about the value of the very popular acai berry diet is – does it have side effects serious enough to create an eating disorder or to enable an eating disorder. The answer to that question is a resounding ‘no”. Eating disorders are not created by a diet or a specific dietary supplement known to reduce appetite. Eating disorders are a result of many complex situations and there is not one easy cause to pin them on. In fact, research is showing that the actual cause of eating disorders is related to factors such as: 1) pressure from a family and or culture as well as 2) emotional and personality disorders. There is even a building sense of understanding that eating disorders have genetic and biological implications.
The acai palm, indigenous to Brazil, bears the acai berry. This berry has received much publicity in the past few years as a popular diet and health food. The acai berry is said to promote weight loss and increase energy and sexual drive. The weight loss is a side effect of a loss in appetite in some people. According to a book published by Dr. Perricone, the acai berry outperforms other foods tested because of its high level of nutrition. Acai is robust in antioxidants and vitamin C. As of 2010, there has been no research-based evidence of serious mental health side effects of acai berry supplementation. However, you should be aware of common-sense precautions related to acai allergies, pharmaceutical interactions and over-ingestion.
Mental Health: Allergies and Acai Berries
The number of people with food allergies seems to be increasing. Restaurants and food manufacturers commonly protect themselves from potential lawsuits by disclosing that food prepared in their kitchens may have contacted highly allergenic foods such peanuts, gluten, eggs, and milk. The acai berry is an allergen in some people; start cautiously and slowly build up to the maximum daily recommended dose. If you have allergies to fruits such as strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries, this cautious approach may be best.
Mental Health: Pharmaceutical Interactions and Acai Berries
If you take medication for any reason, introduce any new food or drug into your body with caution because of the potential for a food-medication interaction. At this point in time, no research has yet found a serious negative interaction between the acai berry and medication. Be as cautious as you would when adding any new food to your diet while taking medication. Start taking the acai berry supplement at a low level and slowly build up.
Mental Health: Over-ingestion and Acai Berries
Some people think that if a little is good, more is better. This mindset is dangerous. Ingesting too much acai berry could have the same side effects as those from over-consuming any fruit, which include cramping, gas, and diarrhea. Read the label to see what other ingredients are included in an acai berry supplement. Over-ingesting nutrients such as vitamins C and E can cause sores in your mouth.
Mental Health and Acai Berries
In summary, it seems safe to say that mental health eating disorders are not caused by ingesting acai berry. There are potential side effects related to taking acai berry, but these are related to using common sense and not to the acai berry. Mental health eating disorders are a funtion of a complex set of variables including pressure from family and or cultures, emotional and personality disorders and, more than likely. genetic and biological implications.
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