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Mangoes are synonymous with summer and the only good thing offered in the scorching heat. The juicy yellow pulp is loaded with the goodness of fibre, antioxidants, vitamin A, vitamin B6, vitamin E, vitamin K, but the health benefits of mangoes have often been debatable because of its high calorie and sugar content. That’s probably the reason why many people avoid binging on the king of fruits, especially diabetics.
But what if these are just a bunch of myths and it’s safe for diabetics to eat it? According to the book Healing Foods by Miriam Polunin, mangoes contain enzymes that aid breakdown and digestion of protein, and also fibre, which keeps the digestive functions working efficiently. But how much is advisable?
Dr Anil Bhoraskar, senior diabetologist, SL Raheja Hospital says, “A diabetic patient can eat half a mango daily. However, they should avoid having the juice. Also, they must keep a gap of an hour between having food and consuming a mango”.
Bhoraskar also suggests checking blood sugar levels after eating a slice of mango. “If the blood sugar level is beyond 25% then you must not eat the rest of the mango. Each food item has a varying response to an individual’s body, It is very important to know that all food items act differently on the same individual on different days and this is known as interpersonal variation. The consumption of other food items alongside the mango can also have a variable effect”, he said.
Is it worth the risk? “Mangoes are high in fibre content and contains lots of antioxidants like zeaxanthin, quercetin, astragalin and beta-carotene which help boost brain health and function along with Vitamin B6”, says Dr Rinki Kumari, chief dietitian at Fortis Hospital.
If diabetics need to relish the delicious fruit, a certain amount of fitness is also important. So is a decent balance between mango and other dietary intakes.