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The African Mango, and Other Mangos we Know and Love

mangoIn a September 2010 episode of the Dr. Oz show, he talked about 3 essentials for the medicine cabinet. That list included African Mango (or Irvingia Gabonensis); he explained that it was a potent source of fiber and helps to remove cholesterol from your body. The topic is gaining popularity again this new year as people search for weight loss solutions.

Whether or not you decide to take the African Mango supplement, fresh mangoes are a delicious way to get nutrients in the bleak midwinter, when not much in the way of fresh fruits and vegetables are in season locally.

You can learn more about the African Mango Supplement -what it is and how to use it- here.

It’s always best to get vitamins and minerals from food sources when possible and use supplements as a backup. At this time of year you’ll likely find fresh Kent and Tommy Atkins mango in your supermarket – each variety has each its own unique flavor, texture and aroma. (In the U.S., six varieties make up the bulk of mangos available at grocery stores: Ataulfo, Francine, Haden, Keitt, Kent and Tommy Atkins – the last the most popular.)

Mangoes contain over 20 different vitamins and minerals, and are available year-round fresh and frozen – the cubes easy to thaw and add to smoothies or serve with yogurt and granola. Mangos are an excellent source of vitamins C and A, both important antioxidant nutrients. (Vitamin C promotes healthy immune function and collagen formation, and vitamin A is important for vision and bone growth.) Fresh, frozen and dried mangoes are also a good source of dietary fiber – diets low in saturated fat and high in fiber-containing grain products, fruits and vegetables may be associated with a reduced risk of some types of cancer.

Unfortunately, there are plenty of mango lovers out there who are intimidated by the thought of cutting their fresh fruit once they get it home – the technique is not as simple to explain as it is to show in a video – here, Chef Allen Susser demonstrates some of the easiest techniques for selecting and slicing his favorite tropical fruit.

All photos © 2008 National Mango Board and used by permission of the National Mango Board. All rights reserved.

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