With so many weight loss products on the market, how can you be sure you’re picking the right one? In this article we explore the weight loss claims made about African mango extract – can this supplement really help you lose weight?
What Is African Mango?
Irvingia Gabonensis, more commonly known as African mango, bush mango or wild mango, is a tree that grows in the humid forests of West Africa.
Its fruit is spherical and bright green when ripe, with a deep orange pulp that tastes earthy and a little spicy. Beyond the pulp lies the episperm, a big kernel that houses the African mango seeds.
The fruit resembles the traditional mango and can be eaten as one, but the seeds are what make the African mango really special. The seeds are dried and can be eaten like other nuts.
In Africa, the seeds are crushed and used to make butter, used as soup thickeners, and even made into bread.
The Nutritional Benefits Of African Mango
African mango seeds are also known as oilseeds, and contain very high amounts of essential fatty acids, protein and fiber.
Essential fatty acids are so called because the body doesn’t produce them, and it is essential that they be supplemented in our diet. They have been scientifically proven to reduce cholesterol in the blood, and reduce your risk of suffering from heart disease.
Protein is an important component of every cell in the body. It’s used to maintain and repair tissues, build new cells, and helps your body function at its best.
The fiber contained in African mango seeds is water-soluble. This means that when it comes into contact with water, or in your digestive system, it forms a gel that slows down digestion and helps you to feel fuller for longer. This can also help to stabilize blood sugar levels, because the glucose in your food will be absorbed more slowly.
African Mango seeds also contain traces of the B Vitamins thiamine (B1), riboflavin (B2) and niacin (B3), which are needed to help the body manage stress, and help cells convert glucose into energy.
Bonus Nutrient - African Mango Seeds also contain tryptophan, one of the amino acids that our brain uses to produce serotonin – our very own “happy chemical”.
Does African Mango Extract Work?
African mango seed extract is thought to help weight loss, decrease blood sugar levels and blood lipid levels. It’s also believed that the seed encourages the body to burn up its fat reserves, leading to further weight loss.
A study in 2005 showed that African mango seeds had an impact on weight and blood lipids on obese subjects. A group of men was given African mango seed extract three times a day for a month, versus a group that received a placebo (oat bran).
At the end of the study, the men that had received the extract had lost between 2.3% and 5.7% of their body weight, while the results for the placebo group showed a decrease of 1.2%. In addition to this, levels of cholesterol and triglycerides in the blood decreased, whilst levels of HDL-Cholesterol, or “good cholesterol”, increased.
Another study was conducted in 2009. Volunteers were given 150mg of African mango seed extract three times a day, half an hour before meals. After ten weeks the volunteers had lost on average 6.3% of their body fat. Waist and hip measurements had also decreased, and levels of blood cholesterol had dropped by 26.2%.
Losing Weight With African Mango
Used as part of a healthy diet, African mango extract can help you to lose weight. The high content of water-soluble fiber will keep you fuller during and after meals.
It also stabilizes your blood sugar levels, so you’ll find it easier not to snack between meals.
Colon Cleansing With African Mango
You can also use African mango as a colon cleanse. The water-soluble fiber swells in the digestive system, forming larger and softer stools that are more easily passed through the large intestine.
The bulking effect of the fiber can rid the intestine of toxins such as heavy metals. Make sure you drink plenty of water when supplementing fiber in your diet.
How To Take African Mango
It’s difficult to get hold of African mango seeds in raw form outside of Africa, so the easiest way to include this supplement in your diet is to take the extract in pill form. Most manufacturers recommend 150mg twice a day, around half an hour before lunch and dinner.
When choosing which supplement to buy, ensure that it contains the extract “IGOB131” as this is the patented extract that was used in the clinical trials mentioned above.
Where possible try to buy the purest form possible, with few other fillers and ingredients. African Mango Pure by GHI contains no additives, and is available from Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/African-Mango-Pure-Weight-600mg/dp/B00CHR80CE)
What Are The Side Effects
During the clinical trials, some of the volunteers reported headaches, difficulty sleeping and flatulence, however the volunteers who were given the placebo also reported similar issues. African mango extract has been tested on rats, with no adverse effects being reported.
The extract may interact with certain pharmaceutical medication and it is recommended that you seek a doctor’s advice before taking any supplement, especially if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Does It Work? Yes!
If you want to stabilize your blood sugar levels and reduce your blood cholesterol, then supplementing your diet with African mango extract is a great start.
Taking this supplement as part of a healthy diet will reduce your risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular disease. The high fiber content in the extract will also reduce hunger and help you to lose weight.