Monday, September 14, 2015

The Sexy Sweet Mango...


            The mango grows on trees all over the world

I don't know about you but sometimes it's the simple things in life that I enjoy the most, and one of them is the flavor, and aroma of a fresh cut mango. What people fail to realize, is that this is the king of all fruits. I got some at the market this week, and discovered again just how good this fruit really is. Mango comes in different shapes and sizes. The outer skin is smooth, and green in un-ripe mangoes, but turns into golden yellow, bright yellow, or orange-red when they ripen. A high-quality mango fruit should have very little fiber content, and minimal sour taste. Mangoes have a moderate amounts of copper. Copper is a co-factor for many vital enzymes, and is also required for the production of red blood cells, but first a little history:

In many cultures, mango fruit and leaves are ritually used as floral decorations at weddings, public celebrations and religious ceremonies. Word is, mangoes have been cultivated in South Asia for thousands of years, and reached East Asia between the fifth and fourth centuries BC. Mango's are documented in Hindu writings dating back to 4000 B.C. Buddhist monks cultivated this awesome fruit and in fact, the mango is considered to be a sacred fruit in the region because is is said that Buddha himself meditated under a mango tree. By the 10th century AD, mango cultivation had begun in East Africa. As time passed and voyages were made, cultivation came to Brazil, the West Indies and Mexico, all having similar climates enabling their comfortable growth. Today the mango is cultivated in most frost-free tropical and warmer subtropical climates. FYI, more than a third of the world's mangoes are cultivated in India. With China a close second. The mango is actually the national fruit of India, Pakistan and the Philippines. It is also the national tree of Bangladesh.
  
The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations estimates, that mangoes account for approximately half of all tropical fruits produced worldwide.  When mangoes were first imported to the American colonies in the 17th century, they had to be pickled due to lack of refrigeration. Mango's have been grown in the U.S. for a little more than a century, but commercial, large-scale production here is limited. Because mango's need a tropical climate to flourish, only Florida, California, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico grow mango's. In fact, Puerto Rico has been producing mango's commercially for the last 30 years. Currently about 4,000 acres of mango's are being cultivated for export, but the majority of this crop goes to Europe rather than the mainland United States. In the Coachella Valley of California, around 200 acres of mango's are being produced, with about half of these being certified organic. Slow, gradual growth in mango acreage is expected in California, where the competition for suitable land is fierce. Mango's are susceptible to frost, and farmers who own appropriate land are hesitant to switch from tried and true crops such as grapes and citrus. In Hawaii, the estimated space devoted to mango's is around 300 acres and nearly all of this fruit will be sold locally.

When it comes to eating mango's the "hedgehog" style is a common way of slicing, and eating mangoes. The mango is generally sweet, although the taste and texture of the flesh varies across cultivars, some having a soft, pulpy texture similar to an overripe plum, while the flesh of others is firmer, like a cantaloupe or avocado, or may have a fibrous texture. Under-ripe mangoes can be ripened by placing them in brown paper bags. They will then keep in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for about four or five days.




Mango contains a variety of phytochemicals and nutrients. The fruit pulp is high in prebiotic dietary fiber, vitamin C, diverse polyphenols and provitamin A carotenoids. In mango fruit pulp, the antioxidant vitamins A and C, Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), folate, other B vitamins and essential nutrients, such as potassium, copper and amino acids, are present. Mango peel and pulp contain other phytonutrients, such as the pigment antioxidants carotenoids, polyphenols, and omega-3 and -6 polyunsaturated fatty acids. All of which counteract free radicals which cause inflammation, a precursor in various disease processes. The mango is a member of the "anachardiaceae" family which includes poison ivy, cashews, and pistachios, bet you didn't know that, and today there are over 1,000 different varieties of mango's throughout the world, bet you didn't know that either. Below are some of the numerous health and nutrition benefits of "The King Of Fruits":

  1. Anti Cancer: The cancers that mangoes help us to fight include prostrate, breast, colon, and leukemia. The phenols in mangoes, such as quercetin, isoquercitrin, astragalin, fisetin, gallic acid and methylgallat, as well as the abundant enzymes, have cancer-preventing capacities. Mango is also high in a soluble dietary fiber known as pectin. Scientist have identified a strong link between eating lots of fiber and a lower risk of cancers of the gastrointestinal tract. A cup of sliced mangoes (around 165 gram) contain 76% of the needed daily value of vitamin C, a potent antioxidant which helps protect cells from free radical damage and reduces risk of cancer.
  1. Eye Health: One cup of sliced mangoes supplies 25% of the needed daily value of vitamin A, which promotes good eyesight. So eating mangoes regularly helps to prevent night blindness, refractive errors, dryness of the eyes, softening of the cornea, itching and burning in the eyes.
  1. Helps In Digestion: Mangoes contain digestive enzymes that help break down proteins and aid digestion. It also combats acidity and poor digestion because of an enzyme found in the fruit which soothes the stomach. Due to the high amounts of fiber found in mango, it can be a helpful in keeping you regular, thereby helping or preventing constipation.
  1. Benefits To Skin: Mango is effective in relieving clogged pores. People who suffer from acne, which is caused by clogged pores, will benefit from mango. Just remove the mango pulp and apply a mango scrub on your skin for about 10 minutes before washing it. Eating mango regularly makes the complexion fair and the skin soft and shining.
  1. Helps In Diabetes:  The glycemic index of mango is low, ranging between 41-60. So, mango does not have any significant effect in increasing blood sugar levels. Mangoes boost virility among men naturally,and is called the love fruit in many cultures.

  1. Beneficial For Anemia: Mangoes are beneficial for pregnant women and individuals suffering from anemia because of their iron content. Also, the quality and quantity of vitamin C in the mango enhances the absorption of iron from other foods.
  1. Boost Memory: Mangoes are useful to anyone who lacks concentration, it contains glutamine acid which has been proven to boost memory and keep cells active.


Another reason why scientists recommend that people eat many mangoes is that these fruits help to alkalize the body. The presence of citric acid, malic acid, and tartaric acid helps to maintain the body's alkalinity. Mangoes can be eaten raw, cooked, baked, or blended. Mangoes are a good source of vitamins and minerals essential for optimum health. Mangoes make great deserts, juices, and daiquiris. It’s not a proven scientific fact, but many pot smokers are consuming mangoes an hour before lighting up to boost their highs. There’s a good chance that the myrcene molecules found in mango can possibly increase, strengthen and even lengthen the euphoric feeling from smoking marijuana. The myrcene allows THC to pass through the blood brain barrier much faster. So next week at the farmer's market don't pass up on mango's the "king of fruits" Good Luck...





 
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