The 10 Best Health Benefits of Mango

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Research has linked the consumption of mango and its rich nutrients with multiple health benefits such as improved immunity and better digestion. Certain polyphenols that are present in the fruit could potentially reduce the risk of specific types of cancers.

Mango (Mangifera indica), famously referred to as the “king of fruits” in some regions, is a drupe, or stone fruit, which means it has a large seed at its core.

Originating from India and Southeast Asia, mango cultivation has been a practice for over 4,000 years. The fruit comes in hundreds of varieties, each unique in taste, shape, size, and color. Study 1, Study 2

Mangoes are not just tasty, they also possess an impressive nutritional profile. Here are 10 health benefits of mango, a brief look at its nutritional value, and some advice on how to enjoy this fruit.

Health Benefits of Mango

1. Mangoes are nutrient-rich

Mango is a popular choice among fruit lovers, not just for its delicious taste, but also for its nutrient-rich profile.
A cup of fresh mango (165 grams) provides:

  • Calories: 99
  • Protein: 1.4 grams
  • Carbohydrates: 24.7 grams
  • Fat: 0.6 grams
  • Fiber: 2.6 grams
  • Sugar: 22.5 grams
  • Vitamin C: 67% of the Daily Value (DV)
  • Copper: 20% of the DV
  • Folate: 18% of the DV
  • Vitamin B6: 12% of the DV
  • Vitamin A: 10% of the DV
  • Vitamin E: 10% of the DV
  • Vitamin K: 6% of the DV
  • Niacin: 7% of the DV
  • Potassium: 6% of the DV
  • Riboflavin: 5% of the DV
  • Magnesium: 4% of the DV
  • Thiamine: 4% of the DV

A remarkable nutrient fact about mango is that a single cup (165g grams) of the fruit provides nearly 67% of the DV for vitamin C. This water-soluble vitamin supports your immune system, helps with iron absorption, and promotes cellular growth and repair. Study 1, Study 2, Study 3

Mango is also rich in copper and folate, minerals particularly important during pregnancy due to their role in supporting healthy fetal growth and development. Study 1, Study 2, Study 3, Study 4

2. They are low in calories

Another health advantage of mango is its low-calorie amount.

A cup of fresh mango (165g grams) has less than 100 calories and a very low calorie density, which means it provides a big volume of food for a small amount of calories.

Most fresh fruits and vegetables, including mango, tend to have a low calorie density. One research found that eating fresh fruit like mango at the start of a meal could prevent overeating later in the meal.

However, this might not apply to dried mango. A cup of dried mango (160g grams) contains 510 calories, 106g (grams) of sugar, and a higher calorie density.

Despite being nutrient-rich, dried mango should be consumed moderately due to its high calorie and sugar amount.

3. May help prevent diabetes

Fresh mango, despite having relatively high natural sugar amount compared to other fresh fruits (over 22g grams per cup, 165g grams), does not lead to diabete, neither it is unhealthy for people with the condition.

However, many studies have linked a higher intake of fresh fruit with a lower risk of diabetes. Study 1, Study 2, Study 3, Study 4

Specific research examining the relationship between fresh mango and diabetes is limited.

However, one study found significant improvements in blood sugar levels in individuals who added 10g grams of freeze-dried mango to their daily diet for 12 weeks.

Different studies suggested that consuming fruits and vegetables rich in vitamin C and carotenoids could help prevent diabetes onset. As mango is high in these nutrients, it may offer similar benefits, though more investigation is required to establish this connection. Study 1, Study 2, Study 3, Study 4

Despite this, it’s worth noting that due to its high natural sugar, consuming large amounts of mango could potentially cause a spike in blood sugar levels.

Therefore, it’s advisable to consume mango in moderation, ideally around 1 cup (165g grams) per serving. Pairing it with other foods rich in fiber and protein can also help manage potential blood sugar spikes.

4. Rich in healthy plant compounds

Mangoes are rich in polyphenols, plant-derived compounds that serve as antioxidants providing protection to your body. Study 1, Study 2

The fruit contains over a dozen types of these compounds, located in the flesh, peel, and even the seed kernel. These include (Study 1, Study 2, Study 3):

  • Mangiferin
  • Catechins
  • Anthocyanins
  • Gallic acid
  • Kaempferol
  • Rhamnetin
  • Benzoic acid

Antioxidants play a crucial role in shielding your cells from free radicals, highly reactive compounds that can damage your cells. Study 1, Study 2

Scientific research associates free radical damage with aging signs and chronic diseases.

Among the polyphenols, mangiferin has drawn significant attention and is often labeled a “super antioxidant” due to its exceptional potency. Study 1, Study 2

Test-tube and animal studies have shown that mangiferin can counteract free radical damage related to cancers, diabetes, and other diseases. Study 1, Study 2

5. Packed with immune-strengthening nutrients

Mangoes are rich in nutrients that boost the immune system.

A single cup (165g grams) of mango provides 10% of your daily vitamin A requirement, a vitamin crucial for a robust immune system. Insufficient vitamin A intake is associated with an increased infection risk. Study 1, Study 2, Study 3

Additionally, a cup of mango nearly meets 75% of your daily vitamin C requirement. This vitamin aids your body in producing more white blood cells capable of fighting diseases, boosts their effectiveness, and improve your skin’s defenses. Study 1, Study 2

Mangoes also contain other nutrients that can potentially boost the immune system, such as (Study 1):

  • Copper
  • Folate
  • Vitamin E
  • Various B vitamins

6. Promotes heart health

Mangoes also contain nutrients that contribute to a healthy heart.

They provide magnesium and potassium, which help in maintaining healthy blood circulation. These nutrients help relax your blood vessels, thereby encouraging lower blood pressure levels. Study 1, Study 2

Mangiferin, the super antioxidant found in mangoes, also has heart health benefits. Study 1, Study 2.

Animal studies have found that mangiferin can protect heart cells against inflammation, oxidative stress, and cell death. Study 1, Study 2, Study 3

Additionally, it might also contribute to reducing your blood levels of cholesterol, triglycerides, and free fatty acids. Study 1, Study 2

While these promising findings, research on mangiferin and heart health in humans is still limited. Therefore, further studies are necessary.

7. May help with digestive health

Mango is known for its properties that could benefit digestive health. Study 1

It contains a set of digestive enzymes known as amylases.

These enzymes break down large food particles, enabling easy absorption by the body.

Specifically, amylases convert complex carbohydrates into sugars like glucose and maltose. These enzymes are more active in ripe mangoes, which explains their sweeter taste compared to unripe mangoes. Study 1

Additionally, mangoes’ high water and dietary fiber content may address digestive problems such as constipation and diarrhea.

A month-long study involving adults with chronic constipation discovered that daily mango intake was more effective in helping the condition’s symptoms compared to a soluble fiber supplement similar to mango.

This implies that mangoes may possess additional elements benefiting digestive health besides dietary fiber, though further research is needed to confirm this.

8. Supports eye health

Mangoes are rich in nutrients essential for healthy eyes, including the antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin.

These antioxidants are concentrated in the retina, the part of the eye responsible for converting light into signals that the brain can interpret.

Specifically, they are concentrated in the retina’s center or the macula. Study 1, Study 2, Study 3

Lutein and zeaxanthin act as a natural sunblock within the retina, absorbing excess light and seemingly protecting your eyes from harmful blue light. Study 1

Mangoes as mentioned earlier also provide vitamin A, another crucial nutrient for eye health.

Insufficient vitamin A intake can lead to dry eyes, night blindness, and in severe cases, corneal scarring. Study 1

9. May help lower your risk of certain cancers

Mangoes are rich in polyphenols, compounds that may exhibit anti-cancer properties.

Polyphenols can protect against oxidative stress, which is associated with various cancer types. Study 1

In test-tube and animal studies, mango polyphenols reduced oxidative stress. They have also been found to possibly stop the growth or even destroy different cancer cells, including leukemia, colon, lung, prostate, and breast cancers. Study 1, Study 2, Study 3, Study 4

Mangiferin, a significant polyphenol in mangoes, has gained recent attention for its promising anti-cancer effects.

In animal studies, it reduced inflammation, protected cells from oxidative stress, and either stoped the growth of cancer cells or eradicated them. Study 1, Study 2

While these studies are promising, further human studies are necessary to better understand the potential of the anti-cancer effects of mango polyphenols.

10. Versatile and easy to add to your diet

Mango is a tasty, versatile fruit that can be easily added into your diet.

However, its tough skin and large pit can make it challenging to cut.

Here’s an effective method for cutting a mango:

  1. Cut the mango lengthwise with the skin still on, about 1/4 inch (6 mm) from the center to separate the flesh from the pit.
  2. Without cutting the skin, slice the flesh on each piece into a grid pattern.
  3. Scoop out the diced flesh from the skin.

Mango can be enjoyed in various ways such as:

  • Adding it to smoothies.
  • Mixing diced mango into salsa.
  • Including it in a summer salad.
  • Serving sliced mango alongside other tropical fruits.
  • Adding diced mango to quinoa salad.
  • Topping Greek yogurt or oatmeal with mango.
  • Topping burgers or seafood with grilled mango.

Bear in mind that mangoes, while sweet and delicious, contain more sugar than many other fruits. As with all things, moderation is key – it’s advisable to limit mango intake to about 2 cups (330g grams) per day.


Packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, mango offers a plethora of health benefits.

These include possible anticancer properties, boost of the immune system, and improved digestive and eye health.

Moreover, its delicious flavor makes it a great addition to your diet, easily added into smoothies and a variety of other recipes.

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