Health Benefits of Mango
Mango fruit is one of the most popular, nutritionally rich fruits with unique flavour, fragrance, taste, and health promoting qualities, making it one of the super foods.
Mango is one of the delicious seasonal fruits grown in the tropics. Botanically, the fruit belongs within the family of Anacardiaceae, a family that also includes numerous species of tropical-fruiting trees in the flowering plants such as cashew, pistachio etc.
Botanically mango fruit is called Magnifera Indica.
Each mango fruit measures 5 to 15 cms in length, and about 4 to 10 cms width, and has typical “mango” shape, or sometimes oval or round. Mango comes in different shapes and sizes depending upon the cultivar types. The outer skin (pericarp) is smooth and is green in unripe mangoes but turns into golden yellow, crimson red, yellow or orange-red depending upon the cultivar type.
Internally, its flesh (mesocarp) is juicy, orange yellow in color with numerous soft fibrils radiating from its centrally placed flat, oval-shaped stone (enveloping a single large kidney-shaped seed). Its flavour is pleasant and rich, and tastes sweet with mild tartness.
Health Benefits of Mangoes
Mango fruit is rich in pre-biotic dietary fiber, vitamins, minerals, and poly-phenolic flavonoid antioxidant compounds.
Research findings show that mango fruit protects against colon, breast cancers, leukaemia and prostate cancers.
Mango fruit is an excellent source of vitamin A and flavonoids like beta-carotene, alpha carotene, and beta-cryptoxanthin. 100g of fresh mango fruit provides 765IU or 25% of recommended daily levels of vitamin A. Together, these compounds have been known to have antioxidant properties and are essential for vision. Vitamin A is also required for healthy mucous membrane and skin. Consumption of natural organic fruits rich in carotene is known to protect from lung and oral cavity cancers.
Fresh mango is a good source of potassium which is an important component of cell and body fluids that helps control heart rate and blood pressure.
Mango is a good source of vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), vitamin C and vitamin E. consumption of foods rich in vitamin C helps the body develop resistance against infections agents and scavenge harmful oxygen-free radicals.
Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) is required for GABA hormone production within the brain. It also controls homocysteine levels within the blood, which may be harmful to blood vessels resulting in coronary artery disease (CAD), and stroke.
Also mangos contain copper which is a co-factor for many vital enzymes like cytochrome c-oxidase, and superoxide dismutase. Copper is important for the production of red blood cells.
Mango may help with Diabetes: Mango leaves may help normalize insulin levels in the blood. Mango fruit also has a relatively low glycemic index (41-60) so moderate quantities will not spike your sugar levels.
Lowers cholesterol: The high levels of fiber, pectin and vitamin C helps to lower serum, cholesterol levels, specifically Low-Density Lipoprotein
Alkaline the whole body: The tartaric acid, malic acid, and a trace of citric acid found in the fruit help to maintain the alkali reserve of the body.
Clears the skin: Can be used both internally and externally for the skin. Mangos help clear clogged pores and eliminate pimples.
Prevents Cancer: The antioxidant compounds in mango like quercetin, isoguercetrin, astragalin, fisetin, Gallic acid and methylgallat have been found to protect against cancers of the colon, breast, leukaemia and prostate cancers.