Is there anything like the refreshing, sweet taste of fresh mango? It’s one of my favorite fruits due to its delicious taste and versatility. You can use it as a topping to many dishes or as the major flavor profile in smoothies, homemade ice creams, and more. But there’s another reason I love this fruit: mango nutritional benefits are simply amazing!
You may not be aware, but mangoes contain many nutrients liked to improved immunity, digestion, skin health, and more. Let’s take a closer look at this tropical fruit and the many mango nutritional benefits you can get by incorporating it into your diet.
What Makes Mangoes So Healthy?
As one of the most popular fruits throughout the world, mangoes are known as the “king” of tropical fruit. As such, you may be surprised to learn that they’re actually native to India, having grown there for over 5,000 years. In fact, today, more than half of the world’s mangoes come from India!
Mangoes are grown from the tree Mangifera indica, and it’s actually a member of cashew and pistachio families (though it doesn’t affect those with nut allergies). The fruit contains a harder skin, the softer edible flesh, and a center stone that houses a seed.
Interestingly, all components of the mango—even the pit—have been used in natural remedies for over 4,000 years. Some of the more interesting uses include the following:
- Mango juice—Viewed as a restorative tonic; used in helping to treat heat stroke.
- Mango seeds—Used to help treat asthma and as an astringent.
- Mango fumes (from burning its leaves)—Used to help relieve both hiccups and throat infections via inhalation of the fumes.
- Mango bark—Used to help treat diphtheria and rheumatism.
- Mango fruit as a whole—Used to help treat abscesses, dog or jackal bites, snake bites, stings, blisters and wounds, diarrhea, liver disorders, and more.
So, what makes the fruit so popular and versatile as a natural remedy? Well, mangoes are commonly considered a “superfood” due to their nutritional properties.
This single fruit actually contains over 20 vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, B5, B6, C, E, and K as well as folate, copper, niacin, potassium, magnesium, and much more! In addition, it’s a great source of fiber and complex carbohydrates.
So, let’s take a look at how the nutrients we just covered account for the many mango nutritional benefits people have come to expect from consuming this fruit.
5 Mango Nutritional Benefits
Here are five of the top mango nutritional benefits, along with some interesting research about each of them.
1. May boost immunity
Because mangoes are a great source of vitamin A, one of the top mango nutritional benefits lies it its immune-boosting properties.
Studies have shown that a vitamin A deficiency actually impairs your natural immunity by blocking the normal regeneration of your mucosal barriers. This means that consuming enough vitamin A is essential for maintaining a strong immune system.
In addition, mango has been shown to have immunomodulatory properties in animal studies. This means that consuming mango could actually activate immune function as needed. Furthermore, it’s been shown to help increase the power of chemotherapy. As a result, scientists stated that it could serve as a complimentary therapy to chemotherapy in cancer patients.
2. Supports skin health and regeneration
Perhaps one of the lesser known mango nutritional benefits is its ability protect the health of your skin.
In 2013 animal study, researchers found that oral consumption of mango extract actually helped fight UVB-related skin aging. Additionally, the researchers noted a marked increase in collagen synthesis in the mice who consumed the mango extract.
Moreover, thanks yet again to its vitamin A content, mango also has the power to promote skin regeneration. The retinol in vitamin A actually helps stimulate new skin cell production! It’s been shown to not only protects against the breakdown of collagen but help slow the aging process.
3. Aids digestion
Mangoes have been used to promote digestion for thousands of years in Indian traditional medicine. And scientific studies have supported this connection for years.
In fact, one animal study revealed that not only did mango have an anti-diarrheal effect but it also showed anti-microbial effects by inhibiting the growth of both Streptococcus aureus and Proteus vulgaris.
Additionally, in a four-week study on 36 men and women with chronic constipation, researchers found that eating a whole mango each day was more effective at easing constipation symptoms than taking an equivalent amount of a fiber supplement.
4. Supports healthy blood sugar levels
Amazingly, one of the most powerful mango nutritional benefits is its ability to produce significant blood sugar-lowering effects.
According to one study, researchers found that administering mango extract to mice lowered their blood sugar levels by more than 37 percent!
And another study found that when 20 obese adults consumed freeze-dried mango daily for 12 weeks, it significantly reduced their blood glucose levels. While it didn’t result in any weight changes, the researchers stated that regular consumption of mango does provide a positive effect on fasting blood sugar levels.
5. May help reduce kidney stones
You may be surprised to learn that mango nutritional benefits also include a lower risk of developing kidney stones! And it’s all thanks to the vitamin B6 in the fruit.
Studies have shown that a high intake of vitamin B6 decreases your risk of developing kidney stones. Interestingly, researchers have found that high intake of vitamin B6 actually helps to decrease oxalate production, which is commonly associated with kidney stone development.
Furthermore, researchers suggested that consuming at least 40 mg of vitamin B6 each day intake may reduce the risk of kidney stone formation in women.
As you can see, there are many mango nutritional benefits that you can expect when you consume this fruit on a regular basis. You can start by adding frozen mango to your smoothies or topping some of your favorite salads with fresh mango.
You can also purée mango and then freeze it for a nice frozen treat in the summer. Whatever you prefer, it’s safe to say this is one fruit that’s worth a spot in your dietary rotation.
Thanks to its high nutrient content, mango nutritional benefits are simply amazing!
Interestingly, all components of the mango—even the pit—have been used in natural remedies for over 4,000 years.
Some of the top mango nutritional benefits include: boosting immunity, support skin health, aiding digestion, supporting healthy blood sugar levels, and helping to reduce kidney stone development.