Superfoods virtually pay for themselves when it comes to what they can do for your body and brain. If you’re on a budget, however, it can be hard to justify splurging on them. Yet these densely nutritious superfoods offer such an abundance of dietary and healing properties that you simply can’t afford to leave them out of your diet.
acai berry, what is acai, what is acai berry, what are acai berries
Below are our top 5 affordable superfoods that will fit into even the tightest budget. These five were chosen based on their potency, variety of health benefits, low price, availability, and shelf life. With these five affordable items at your disposal, you can enjoy the benefits of superfoods every day.

Top 5 Superfoods for Folks on a Budget

1. Acai Berry Powders, Extracts, and Juices (Pronounced “ah-sah-ee”)

So just what are acai berries anyway? Only the hottest superfood on the planet. After all, the acai berry is higher in antioxidants than any other berry, with the exception of the maqui berry found in our phenomenal JEM nut butter. Acai berries are even richer in omega-3 fatty acids and lower in sugar than the highly touted goji berry.

Why are acai berries so beneficial?

They are so high in antioxidants and essential fatty acids that they offer more support to the immune system, heart, brain, and skin than almost any other food. The acai berry is also known for its weight loss and anti-aging properties – though, to date, these are spurious claims with no hard scientific data to back them up.

The nutrients in acai berries come from their pulp and dark skins. Unfortunately, because it does not grow locally (acai is native to Central and South America), fresh acai cannot be purchased on any other continent. Instead, acai is consumed outside its homeland in juices, supplements, and powders.

These products can often be pricey, which is why it is best to buy acai products that will keep for a long time. It is also a good idea to choose a product that is concentrated, so a small amount will go a long way in your smoothies and other treats. One product that offers all of the above is ELF Organic Acai Berry Powder, which is freeze-dried to preserve as many nutrients as possible, contains no fillers, and is ethically grown and harvested in the heart of the Amazon.

That said, any high-quality, organic acai powder that will keep long after its container is opened is an economical way to reap the benefits of this superfood. Because it is ultra-rare and pricey per container, keep a jar of it in your spice cabinet so you can add a heaping spoonful (or two) to smoothies, yogurt, oatmeal, and fruit salads. The powder form makes it easy to get all the benefits of the acai berry on a daily basis. And because it has a dark-chocolaty, berry flavor, acai adds a nice, tart kick to just about anything.

Tip: Do not use acai berry powder, extract or juice in baking or cooking, as heat diminishes its health benefits significantly.

acai berry

2. Organic Coconut Oil (or Coconut Butter)

Pure organic coconut oil is the one affordable superfood that is as good for your outside as it is for your inside. Extremely nutritious and rich in healthy fat and fiber, coconut oil is great for heart and digestive health. And, since it stimulates the thyroid, consuming it regularly can aid in weight loss. A large jar of coconut oil costs less than $20 and can last three to six months.
 what is acai, what is acai berry, what are acai berries
Coconut oil is also great for the skin. It contains antimicrobial and antifungal properties that can help with a host of topical issues such as cuts, dry skin, dandruff, eczema, and sunburns. Coconut oil is also great as an eye-makeup remover, hair conditioner, and shaving cream. Check out our organic ozonated coconut oil!
 what is acai, what is acai berry, what are acai berries
Tip: Coconut is a high-heat oil, making it the healthiest option for frying, stir frying, and sautéing.

3. Raw Honey (Unprocessed and Unheated)

The sweetest of our Top 5 Affordable Superfoods is raw honey, an alkaline-forming food that contains powerful antioxidants, vitamins, and enzymes that strengthen the immune system and promote better digestive and overall health.
 what is acai, what is acai berry, what are acai berries
The antibiotic properties of raw honey are highly effective in the treatment of colds, sore throats, allergy symptoms, and coughs. In fact, studies now show that honey is more effective at treating coughs than cough syrup. It’s also more affordable and much healthier than most over-the-counter medicines.
 what is acai, what is acai berry, what are acai berries
Due to its antiviral, antibacterial, and antifungal properties, raw honey helps you maintain a healthy digestive tract, which promotes better nutrient absorption and improved digestion and elimination.
 what is acai, what is acai berry, what are acai berries
Note: Honey should never be given to babies younger than 12 months old.
 what is acai, what is acai berry, what are acai berries
Tip: Consuming raw honey pollinated in your area helps build your immunity to local allergens.

4. Raw Cacao (aka Chocolate)

Did you know that, in its purest, raw form, chocolate is the most antioxidant-rich superfood known to mankind? Well, now you’ve been given permission to keep a stash of it at home and eat it every day. In fact, cacao is the cheapest superfood on our list (per serving), and it’s richer in iron, magnesium, and zinc than all other superfoods.
 what is acai, what is acai berry, what are acai berries
Cacao contains both theobromine and phenethylamine, compounds known to enhance mood and brain functionCacao is also known to help muscle spasms, premenstrual syndrome, and overall energy levels.
 what is acai, what is acai berry, what are acai berries
Tip: Try blending a few spoonfuls with a banana, milk (any type), and ice to make a quick and delicious energy drink for the whole family.

5. Apple Cider Vinegar (Raw and Unpasteurized)

Natural, unpasteurized, organic, raw apple cider vinegar is one of nature’s most perfect foods. Because of its potent antimicrobial and antiviral properties, raw apple cider vinegar may, according to some studies, lower blood pressure, reduce the effects of diabetes, reduce inflammation, and possibly, prevent some cancers or degenerative brain disorders from progressing. Its probiotic properties also make it the perfect digestive aid for most stomach ailments, and many people swear by it for weight loss.
acai berry, what is acai, what is acai berry, what are acai berries
TIP: To sooth an itchy scalp, mix vinegar and water (1:2 ratio), pour over scalp, and rinse with water. Your scalp will thank you!

Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. These views do not necessarily reflect those of HoneyColony, its staff, or investors.

Marni Ayers is a writer, editor and mother. She writes frequently about eco-conscious living and is the founder of  Marni is also an award-winning playwright. Her plays have been produced in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco and other cities across the U.S. She lives in Santa Monica, California with her husband and two daughters. Submit your story or essay to Buzzworthy Blogs.