Mango skin may help fight flab
U. QUEENSLAND (AUS) — Natural compounds in the peel of two different varieties of mango may help prevent the formation of fat cells.
Published in the journal Food & Function, the detailed analysis of three mango varieties was part of a collaborative research project between the Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation (QAAFI) and the University Queensland School of Pharmacy as part of an Australian Research Council Linkage Projects grant with the Queensland Government.
It’s not unusual for the outer skin of a fruit to have quite a different chemical composition to the flesh, says Professor Mike Gidley, who heads QAAFI’s Centre for Nutrition and Food Sciences.
“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,” he says. “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. There were probably many reasons for this characteristic, says Professor Greg Monteith from the School of Pharmacy.
“A complex interplay of bioactive compounds unique to each peel extract is likely responsible for the difference, rather than just a single component.”
The study’s results could help growers develop mango varieties that actively help reduce obesity which is associated with a variety of chronic conditions such as diabetes, coronary heart disease, and several cancers, including those of the breast and colon.
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