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What to know about mangoes

Mangoes are fruits that have a range of possible health benefits. The nutrients they contain may help boost eye, skin, and hair health and prevent cancer and heart disease. There are many different kinds of mango.

The mango is a tropical stone fruit and member of the drupe family. This is a type of plant food with a fleshy outer section that surrounds a shell, or pit. This pit contains a seed.

Other members of the drupe family include olivesdates, and coconuts.

Different types of mangoes vary in color, shape, flavor, and seed size. Although mango skin can be green, red, yellow, or orange, its inner flesh is mostly golden yellow.

This feature is part of a collection of articles on the health benefits of popular foods. In this article, we explore the many benefits of mangoes, explain their nutritional breakdown, and provide a few healthy recipe ideas.





Benefits

Peter Karasev/Offset

Consuming mangoes has a variety of health benefits that can help protect and strengthen the body. The sections below discuss these benefits in more detail.


Age-related macular degeneration

Mangoes contain an antioxidant called zeaxanthin.

2017 reviewTrusted Source suggests that zeaxanthin may play a protective role in eye health and could prevent damage from macular degeneration. This is an eye condition that gets worse with age.

The review cites the anti-inflammatory properties of zeaxanthin as a possible cause of this protective mechanism.


Cancer

2017 reviewTrusted Source found that mangiferin, a bioactive compound of the mango, can protect against several human cancer types, including lungcolonbreast, and neuronal cancers.

Additionally, the Skin Cancer Foundation suggests that a diet rich in beta carotene content can help protect against skin cancer. Orange fruits and vegetables, such as mangoes, contain beta carotene, which converts to vitamin A in the body.

ResearchTrusted Source also suggests that vitamin A can boost the action of the immune system against disease.


Diabetes

2019 rodent studyTrusted Source evaluating mango leaves found that some plant compounds had a powerful effect when it came to reducing risk factors for diabetes. These included lower body weight, reduced blood sugar levels, and lower levels of fats in the blood.

Research shows that functional compounds in the mango peel also have antidiabetic properties.

Neither study clarifies whether or not mango flesh provides the same benefits. However, one 2014 studyTrusted Source found that eating freeze-dried mangoes reduced blood sugar levels in people with obesity.


Heart disease

Health experts consider mangoes to contain medium to high amounts of potassium. A 165-gramTrusted Source (g) cup of raw mango provides 277 milligrams (mg) of potassium, or 5.89% of an adult’s daily needs.

The content of fiber, potassium, and vitamins in mangoes helps keep the arteries working and reduces the risk of heart disease.

Increasing potassium and decreasing sodium in the diet can help reduceTrusted Source the risk of high blood pressure.


Skin and hair

Mangoes also support hair health, as they provide a good amount of vitamin A. Substances that derive from vitamin A help provideTrusted Source sebum, which moisturizes the hair.

Vitamin A is also necessaryTrusted Source for the growth of all bodily tissues, including the skin and hair.

A cup of sliced mango provides 60.1 mgTrusted Source of vitamin C. This is most of a person’s daily requirement, according to the Dietary Guidelines for AmericansTrusted Source.

Consuming enough vitamin C supports the development and maintenance of collagen. This provides structureTrusted Source to the skin and hair.

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