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Magnificent Mangoes

Mango

Who doesn’t love mangoes – they’re delicious! This summer, it’s time to turn to mangoes not only to add a dash of flavor and color to your next meal, but also to add some important health benefits. Whether in a smoothie, salad, or snack, mangoes make a great addition.

Did you know...?

Mangoes have been around for over four thousand years, and are closely related to cashews and pistachios (who knew?). There are over a thousand difference species of mangoes, which are most heavily grown in India.

Great taste and great for you!

Besides being a tasty treat, mangoes offer a ton of nutrition, especially for those of us who are in need of vitamins and antioxidants. Mangoes are very high in antioxidants and have been linked to a reduced risk of colon and prostate cancer, as well as breast cancer and leukemia. Also high in vitamins A and C, mangoes are great for eye health and to boost immune system function. Combined with fiber and pectin, the vitamin C in mangoes also help to lower lipoprotein levels in the blood for reduce serum cholesterol levels. The fiber and enzymes found in mangoes are great to help ease digestion issues. Enzymes help to break down food so the body absorbs nutrients more readily, while fiber helps with elimination. For a more fun reason to eat mangoes, the high vitamin E levels in this fruit have been linked to higher sex drives.

How do you choose a good mango?

First, ignore the color as it won’t tell you whether the mango is ripe. Instead, gently squeeze the mango with your fingertips, looking for a slight softness. If your mango is ripe, store it in the fridge until you eat it for up to five days. For unripe mangoes, store at room temperature and they will gradually ripen. You can speed up the process by placing the mango in a paper bag. Once ripened you can peel the rind off the mango and cube the fruit. Here’s a handy video on preparing a mango to eat. Mangoes can be eaten fresh or added to a variety of meals. Sauces, salsas, and chutneys can be added to salads or main dishes, or mangoes can make a delightful dessert. They are also perfect for smoothies. Try out this terrific mango salsa recipe for starters and then let your imagination take you away. Enjoy! Photo: joyosity