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Constipation

23 January 2019

Mangoes prove why they are considered the 'king of fruits'

Mangoes are more than just a tasty fruit. According to a new study they can help ease bowel movements.

Mangoes are a delicious tropical fruit enjoyed by millions.

You can pop it in a smoothie, add it to your salad or simply enjoy it as is.

This delicious fruit is more than just a tropical treat; it’s packed with vitamins A, C and B6. A recent study, conducted by Texas A&M University, found that the high fibre content of mangoes can also help relive constipation.

According to studies, adult men need about 38g of fibre a day and women around 25g. 

Constipation relief

Constipation is a condition that affects millions of people around the world. According to an article published by the South African Pharmaceutical Journal, 20% of South Africans suffer from constipation.

The condition is characterised by having trouble passing stool and having fewer than three bowel movements a week.

The study compared the effect of consuming mangoes to taking the equivalent amount of fibre on the bowel movements of study subjects.

Over four weeks, women and men suffering from chronic constipation were equally divided into a group that ate one mango a day and a second group that consumed a teaspoon of fibre powder every day.

Further research

Although all study subjects experienced relief from their constipation, it was noted that those who ate the mangoes had better results. The researchers believe that this is due to the mineral content of mangoes.

The fruit consists of a combination of polyphenols and fibre. Polyphenols are nutrients found in plant-based foods. They are renowned for their antioxidant properties and digestive health benefits. What also makes mangoes a great solution for constipation is that, unlike laxatives or fibre powder, they also treat the intestinal inflammation that often accompanies constipation.

The researchers concluded that although mangoes were clearly more effective in relieving the symptoms associated with constipation, more research needs to be done on the mechanics of exactly how mangoes relieve constipation and the relationship between polyphenols and fibre.

Image credit: iStock