Sunday, June 14, 2009

Magical Mango Mystery Tour!!

Yes! The season for mangoes, the King of all fruits, is in full blast down here in the Virgin Islands. My heart goes out to all of my northern friends because I never ate a "real" mango until I came down here. Well, whoever is interested is welcome to visit and taste for themselves!

Eating whole, raw, fresh and ripe fruits is a great way to satisfy your sweet tooth with out eating sugar and chemical flavorings found in most desserts. Mangoes are a great candy alternative because they are SO SWEET!!

Mangoes are a delicious fruItalicit with a taste similar to peaches and are surprisingly low glycemic! Mangoes are an excellent source of vitamin c and carotene (orange colored fruits and veggies carry the nutrient carotene). Due to it's high concentration of antioxidants it is a great anti-cancer food. They also contain enzymes for proper digestion, similar to papain which is in papaya. Mangoes also protect against infections and can prevent intestinal disease and diarrhea, especially in children. It can help prevent giadara, or "traveler's diarrhea".

A study was done where scientists poured mango juice into a test tube with a virus in and the virus was eliminated. Mangoes are also high in iron, so combined with their high vitamin c content, they make great blood builders. Mangoes is one of the few fruits that can be safely eaten by diabetes. In comparison to other tropical fruits, the glucose and insulin response to mango was the lowest!

Careful not to eat unripe mangoes or fruit that has not been ripen before harvest. The mango tree releases a toxic sap when the fruit is picked before ripening that can cause skin irritation and allergies. Some mangoes remain green when ripe, but most become a beautiful golden color with a hint of pink or orange.

My favorite way to eat a mango is to peel it and go at it as is (allowing the juice to drip down my arms)!! However my second favorite way is in a fruit salad with sliced bananas and pineapple or papaya. Mangoes are really great in green smoothies to make and excellent, rejuvenation drink full of iron, vitamin c and k!


Herbal Eranah
Murray N.D., Michael 2005. The Encyclopedia of Healing Foods. New York, New York: Atria Books. pgs. 291-294.