One part of the existing science base is heavily influenced by the industry and is more related to marketing than to real properties. On the other hand, African mangoes have real, non-negligible health benefits.
What is African Mango?
Mango (Irvingia gabonensis) is a species that grows in the forests of Africa. These are tall trees that reach 15-40 meters. The fruits of the tree are used as food or as a source of substances for the cosmetic industry. Although the fruits of Irvingia gabonensis are called mangoes, because of their similarities in appearance, African mangoes have nothing to do with traditional mangoes.
Mango is distinguished by its seeds, which are the main source of nutrients and used as a nutritional supplement. They contain large amounts of fat and water-soluble fiber. Almost all of the fat in the seeds is saturated and dominated by medium-chain triglycerides, which resembles the profile of coconut oil.
African mango seeds contain 10% protein, 64% fat, 15% carbohydrates and 3-4% fiber. Fiber, which may also be a major active component of seeds, has not yet been characterized as a type. In terms of micronutrients, the seeds are not unique and contain substances typical of other foods, such as eugenic acid, vitamin C, quercetin, magnesium, iron, calcium, kaempferol, and some other glycosides.
Irvingia gabonensis is not known for its popularity in traditional African medicine and has been used mainly for cosmetic purposes, mainly as a thickener.
African mango seeds have a moderate antioxidant effect.
How does African Mango work?
Most studies do not detect unique substances in African mango, and therefore lack unique mechanisms of action. It can be considered as a nutrient-rich, healthy food.
In addition to fats, which are mainly medium-chain triglycerides, water-soluble fibers, which resemble glucomannan, also have potential effects. Glucomannan has physicochemical properties and taken before meals can affect the metabolism of nutrients. Similar to the mechanism of action, African mangoes can help improve digestion, regulate blood sugar after carbohydrate intake, and reduce calories from ingested foods.
Proven and potential benefits to humans:
- An aqueous extract of the bark of Irvingia gabonensis helps to reduce the pain caused by high temperatures.
- Potential benefits of triglyceride lowering. Daily intake of 3 150 mg extract reduced by 45%. A single test has not been done on all requirements and the triglyceride reduction in question may be related to a decrease in body fat and total test weight;
- Potential benefits of reducing total cholesterol by 26% and bad cholesterol (LDL) by 27%. Subjects used 150 mg of the extract up to 3 times daily for 10 weeks. The two existing studies are incomplete and the decrease may be related to the reduction of body fat and the total weight of the subjects tested;
- Possible decrease in blood sugar by 22-32% with long-term intake. The decrease may be related to changes in the body composition of the subjects tested;
- Potential benefits of appetite suppression. The independent effect of African mangoes has been found in defective studies. The only full-fledged, positive-effect study observed the combined intake of African mango with Cisse, with the two herbs exhibiting synergistic effects;
- Potential benefits of reducing fat. The effect is seen with long-term pre-meals. The possible mechanism is related to the reduction of food intake, but all research so far is incomplete and with potential influence from the industry.
No effective daily dose has been established at this stage. In the studies, the doses used ranged from 150 mg to 3 200 mg taken daily with meals.
Judging by the basic content of the herb, which is expressed in large amounts of fiber, we can assume that the effective daily dose tends to reach the upper limit of 3 200 mg daily.
For maximum effect, we recommend taking 10-15 minutes before meals.
How to combine African mango?
There are no established interactions between African mango and other nutritional supplements or medications. Potential stacks of African mango with other nutrients can only be made based on a similar effect, complementary properties, and potential synergism.
Mango is used as a weight-loss supplement, but most of its potential benefits are related to its fat and fiber content. Taken before eating, African mango can help with nutrient metabolism and better digestion.
Irvingia gabonensis can be taken with other supplementary fibers, such as psyllium seeds (Indian plantain).
If you intend to block some of your carbohydrates or regulate your blood sugar after a meal, Irvingia gabonensis can be successfully combined with green coffee, green tea, alpha-lipoic acid, and even berberine. To suppress appetite, it is advisable to make a combination with Cissus, with which African mango exhibits synergism.
To regulate blood pressure and high cholesterol, African mango can be combined with green tea and garlic..