NUTRITIONAL VALUE OF COSTA RICA’S SWEET MANGOES

📅April 13th, 2015, 19:38

This tropical super fruit is jam packed with over 20 vitamins and minerals, dietary fiber, and antioxidant compounds. Discover how eating one mango a day can improve your health!

Mangoes deliver a host of nutrients and eating them makes for a delightful sensory experience. They have been called the “King of all fruits” as they fight cancer, alkalize the body, aid in weight loss, regulate diabetes, held digestion, clean your skin, and make the perfect snack. With over 20 vitamins and minerals, nutritionally rich mangoes are considered a superfood. Thanks to USDA Nutrient Database, please see below a complete list of the nutritional value of 100g of mango:

• Principle
o Energy 70 Kcal (3.5%)
o Carbohydrates 17 g (13%)
o Protein 0.5 g (1%)
o Total Fat 0.27 g (1%)
o Cholesterol 0 mg (0%)
o Dietary Fiber 1.80 g (4.5%)
• Vitamins
o Folates 14 ug (3.5%)
o Niacin 0.584 mg (3.5%)
o Pantothenic acid 0.160 mg (1%)
o Pyridoxine(B6) 0.134 mg (10%)
o Riboflavin 0.057 mg (4%)
o Thiamin 0.058 mg (5%)
o Vitamin C 27.7 mg (46%)
o Vitamin A 765 IU (25.5%)
o Vitamin E 1.12 mg (7.5%)
o Vitamin K 4.2 ug (3.5%)
• Electrolytes
o Sodium 2 mg (0%)
o Potassium 156 mg (3%)
• Minerals
o Calcium 10 mg (1%)
o Copper 0.110 mg (12%)
o Iron 0.13 mg (1.5%)
o Magnesium 9 mg (2%)
o Manganese 0.027 mg (1%)
o Zinc 0.04 mg (0%)
• Phyto-nutrients
o Carotene-B 445 ug
o Carotene-a 17 ug
o Crypto-xanthin-B 11 ug
o Lutein-zeaxanthin 0 ug
o Lycopene 0 ug

Wow! Check out all those nutrients! It’s mind-blowing to think these sweet and savory fruits are jam packed with all these health-promoting qualities. Lets take a closer look at what all these vitamins and minerals mean to your body.

Vitamin C. Vitamin C plays an important role in immune function and fighting cancer; it supports healthy cognitive and neurologic function; is required for collagen formation; is important for wound healing; and keeps gums and teeth healthy.

Vitamin A. Vitamin A is critical for vision; important for immune function; helps maintain healthy skin; and plays a role in bone growth.

Folate. Consuming adequate folate before and during pregnancy may help reduce a woman’s risk of having a child with a brain or spinal cord defect.; helps the body make red blood cells and DNA; and supports healthy cardiovascular function.

Fiber. Fiber makes you feel full faster and therefore supports weight management; aids in digestion; and slows the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream.

Vitamin B6. Vitamin B6 is involved in immune function; plays a role in cognitive development; helps the body maintain normal blood sugar levels; helps the body make hemoglobin which carries the oxygen in red blood cells to tissues throughout the body; and helps maintain normal nerve function.

Copper. Copper helps form red blood cells; supports healthy immune function; and helps maintain bone health.

The proof is in the vitamins. Eating mangoes will fight cancer, keep cholesterol in check, cleanse skin, alkalize the body, aid in weight loss, regulate diabetes, improve eye care, support digestion, strengthen immune function, promote concentration and memory, and prevents asthma.

Cancer. Diets rich in beta-carotene and antioxidants play a protective role against prostate cancer and have an inverse association with the development of colon cancer. In a study conducted by Texas AgrilLife Research food scientists who tested mango polyphenol extracts in vitro on colon, breast, lung, leukemia and prostate cancers, mangoes were shown to have some impact on all cancers tested but were most effective with breast and colon cancers.

Diabetes. Diets high in fiber have lower blood glucose levels and type 2 diabetics may have improved blood sugar, lipids and insulin levels.

Digestion. Diets high in fiber prevent constipation and promote regularity and a healthy digestive tract.

Heart Disease. The fiber, potassium and vitamin content in mangoes ward off heart disease. Diets high in potassium and low in sodium reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Asthma Prevention. The risk for developing asthma is lower in people who consume a high amount of certain nutrients and one of these nutrients is beta-carotene, found in mangoes.

Bone Health. Diets with adequate vitamin K consumption are important for improving calcium absorption essential for optimal bone health.

Age-related Macular Degeneration. The antioxidant zeaxanthin, found in mangoes, filters out harmful blue light rays and is thought to play a protective role in eye health, which possibly wards off damage from macular degeneration. Higher intake of fruits in general has been shown to decrease the risk of and progression of age-related macular degeneration.

Skin and Hair. Vitamin C is needed for the building and maintenance of collagen that provides structure to skin and hair. Vitamin A is a nutrient required for sebum production that keeps hair moisturized. Vitamins C and A are also necessary for the growth of all bodily tissues, including skin and hair.

Everything you need to know about buying mangoes in Costa Rica

There are many different kinds of mangoes that range in color, shape, flavor and seed size. The color of mangoes can vary from green to red, yellow or orange. The inner flesh of the mango is mostly a golden yellow. Mangoes are generally sweet, although the taste and texture of the flesh varies across cultivars; some have a soft, pulpy texture while others are firmer and some may have a fibrous texture.

As you venture off to the local fruit stand you can’t miss the mangoes because when grouped together they give the appearance of rainbows. When choosing your mangoes don’t necessarily focus on color as that is not the best indicator of ripeness. Squeeze the mango; a ripe mango will give slightly. Smell the mango; a ripe mango will smell like it’s oozing sweet fruit juice. A mango will smell exactly how it will taste. Unripe mangoes will ripen at room temperature. They will become softer and sweeter over time. Ripe mangoes should be stored in the refrigerator, which will slow down the ripening process. Whole, ripe mangoes may be stored for approximately five days. Peeled mangoes placed in an airtight container can be stored in the freezer for up to six months.

There are many ways to enjoy mangoes and add them to your daily diet. Mango fruit can be enjoyed all alone without any additions. Fresh mango cubes make for a great main ingredient in salsas, a great additions to fruit salads, fruit smoothies or served over your favorite fish!

We love hearing from local Guanacaste residents. Where is your favorite place to get mangoes in Costa Rica? What special dishes do you make with your Costa Rican mangoes? Share your mango stories and photos with us for a chance to be featured on our social media accounts! Email Mark Randall at mark@palmscostarica.com

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