Australian researchers have found that two common mango varieties contain natural compounds that may help fight obesity.
A team from the University of Queensland has found that in two of three mango varieties examined in the research it was the mango peel that demonstrated the biggest fat-reducing potential. The detailed results were published in the journal Food & Function.
Prof Mike Gidley, a co-author of the study, said it was not unusual for the outer skin of a fruit to have quite a different chemical composition to the flesh.
“We know mangoes have many excellent nutritional properties, but more work needs to done to understand the complex natural compounds found in these and other fruits,” Prof Gidley explained.
“This research reminds us that we should be looking at the whole fruit when considering how to take advantage of natural goodness.
“Detailed chemical analysis of the skin and flesh is extremely valuable for mango growers and processors, who are always looking for new ways to value-add their fruit.”
In laboratory models, the study found that the peel from ‘Irwin’ and ‘Nam Doc Mai’ mangoes contained high concentrations of bioactives that inhibit development of human fat cells.
Profe Greg Monteith from the University of Queensland’s School of Pharmacy said there were probably many reasons for this characteristic.
“A complex interplay of bioactive compounds unique to each peel extract is likely responsible for the difference, rather than just a single component,” he said.
The study results will also help growers develop mango varieties that actively help reduce obesity.
Bibliographic information: Taing M-W. et al. 2012. Mango Fruit Peel and Flesh Extracts Affect Adipogenesis in 3T3-L1 Cells. Food Funct. Accepted manuscript; doi: 10.1039/C2FO30073G