Health Benefits of Mangoes

Messy, but delicious, that’s how some people refer to the mango. Indeed, this tropical fruit is delightfully delicious. It may be one of the fruits high in sugar, but since it’s packed with so many beneficial nutrients, there’s no excuse to pass up on this heart-shaped sun-colored fruit. But then again, who would want to miss this versatile fruit? Although you can enjoy it as dried, in mango cake, mango shake or mango ice cream, it still is best eaten as is.

1.       Good for the skin (Vitamin C – 76%)
Mangoes are excellent sources of vitamin C, one of the safest and most effective nutrients. Vitamin C is required to form the protein collagen in the body, which is used to make skin and scar tissue. It is also necessary for fast healing of wounds and even reduces wrinkles and improves skin texture.

2.        Fights off infections (Vitamin A – 25%)
A cup of ripe mango can provide the body with 25% of vitamin A, one of the nutrients which help the body fight off colds and flu by boosting the activity of white blood cells and increase the response of antibodies to antigens. It also provides a protective barrier against viruses.

image by Kirti Poddar via Flickr cc

3.       Regulates cholesterol levels (Fiber – 12%)
Eating mangoes offers a very good amount of fiber, a type of carbohydrate which has been shown to help reduce blood cholesterol levels. Fruits, vegetables, beans and legumes are all good sources of soluble fiber.

4.       Good for the heart (Vitamin B6 – 11%)
Increased levels of homocysteine in the blood have been linked with increased risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke. Mangoes are rich in vitamin B6, a nutrient which helps lower homocysteine build-up.

5.       Combats Alzheimer's  disease (Vitamin E – 9%)
Studies suggest that high doses of vitamin E when taken with C can delay the on set of Alzheimer's disease.

6.       Aids in blood clotting (Vitamin K – 9%)
Vitamin K may not be one of the top known nutrients, but it sure has many important functions in the body. It is best known for its role in healthy blood clotting to prevent excessive bleeding. Mango is a good source of vitamin K.

7.       Helps the body absorb iron (Copper – 9%)
To prevent iron deficiency anemia, it’s not enough to simply just load up on iron-rich foods. Copper is also important as it plays a role in the absorption, storage, and metabolism of iron as well as in the formation of red blood cells. Mangoes are good sources of this trace mineral.

8.       Lowers blood pressure levels (Potassium – 7%)
Bananas are best-known for their potassium content. But did you know that mangoes are also a good source of this nutrient? Studies have proven that potassium deficiency may increase the risk of hypertension.

9.       Energizes the body (Thiamin – 6%)
Are you feeling tired? Grab a mango! With the help of its thiamine content, it helps convert sugar into usable energy.

10.   Promotes a healthy pregnancy (Folate – 6%)
If you’re a woman in your childbearing years, mangoes are good for you. It is loaded with a wide variety of health promoting goodness especially folate. Research has found that pregnant women who have low levels of folate are more likely to have early miscarriages compared to those who have adequate folate levels.  Folate has also proven to prevent neural tube defects to the developing baby. 

* Nutrient data source: USDA

© K Kristie