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Mangoes are in season. The lovely aroma of mango wafts through the air and is soo irresistible. Mangoes are available only in the summer season. Due to the limited availability and their delicious taste, mangoes are the favourite fruit of many. In fact, they are one of the most consumed fruits in the world.

But what happens when you are a diabetic? You cannot eat mango, right? WRONG!!

This is the myth that we are going to bust today……. I can hear people with diabetes cheering 🙂

So first let us understand the myth. Why can’t diabetics eat mango? The reason given is that mango is very rich in sugar and hence it will negatively affect the blood sugar levels. This has been doing the rounds for so long that everyone has started believing it. But this is not the whole truth.

Let us now bust this.

A diabetic diet should get at least 45-65% of its calories from carbohydrates. Carbohydrates, taken at regular interval help stabilise te blood sugar levels. It is advisable to consume complex carbohydrates like whole grains. Fruits have simple sugars and are digested very quickly. This is the argument which works against many fruits, especially mangoes. Although mangoes are made up of simple sugars, the fibre in them slows down the absorption. Also, along with calories, it is extremely important to take into account the nutrition content of any food. Mangoes are very nutrient dense.

  • Mangoes are rich in vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin B6, iron, potassium and fibre.
  • Mangoes are a very rich source of beta carotene and antioxidants.
  • Due to the high fibre content, mangoes help in managing the blood sugar levels.
  • Mangoes prevent constipation.
  • Consumption of mangoes has shown to reduce macular degeneration.
  • The carotenes in mangoes are linked to protection from lung cancer.
  • Mangoes promote skin and eye health.
  • Studies have shown that polyphenolic antioxidant compounds in mango are known to offer protection against breast and colon cancers.
  • Mangoes are rich in potassium. Potassium is an important component of cell and body fluids that helps controlling heart rate and blood pressure.

With so many benefits in the offing, we can’t afford to cut mangoes from our diet. So not abstinence, but portion control is the key.

According to the dietary guidelines, in a diabetic diet, a single serving of fruit should not give you more than 15 gm of carbohydrates or 60 calories. 100 gm of mango gives you around 60 calories. That comes to about half a mango. This amount can be safely eaten by anybody. Also, these calories should be a part of your entire calorie quota, and not over and above the required calories.

Here are a few ways in which diabetics can enjoy this delicious fruit:

  1. Have mangoes as an in-between snack.
  2. Don’t have mangoes with or after meals.
  3. Don’t juice mangoes. The milkshakes or the aam ras are loaded with calories due to the milk and added sugar.
  4. Don’t have the mango flavoured yoghurts. Instead, add chopped mango to a bowl of yoghurt and enjoy!
  5. Relish the fruit, don’t wolf it down.

Enjoy the fruit of the season in a guilt free way. Apart from the taste and the amazing benefits, you will also be able to keep away the sugar cravings.

Happy summers!!!