Diabetes: Freeze-dried mango ‘may help lower blood sugar’ – how much to eat

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Diabetes is becoming increasingly common in the UK, around five million people have a form of the condition, a number that is set to keep growing. What people learn early on is that there are two main types of diabetes: type 1 and type 2. What they have in common is that diet plays a key role in managing them.

Why?

The key to diabetes management is controlling glucose levels in the blood. One of the best ways to do this, alongside injections of insulin, is through the diet.However, some foods are better than others when it comes to diabetes management.

A new study published in the British Journal of Nutrition suggest freeze-dried mango could help obese adults manage their type 2 diabetes.

Obesity is often linked with the most common form of the disease, type 2.

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Associate professor Edralin Lucas said in a statement: “We are excited about these promising findings for mangos, which contain many bioactive compounds, including mangiferin, an antioxidant that may contribute to the beneficial effects of mango on blood glucose.

“In addition, mangos contain fibre, which can help lower glucose absorption into the bloodstream.”

Lucas added: “Our results indicate that daily consumption of 10 grams of freeze-dried mango, which is equivalent to about one-half of a fresh mango (about 100 grams), may help lower blood sugar in obese individuals.”

The researchers reached their conclusions about mango after analysis of participants over the course of a 12-week study during which they ate around 10 grams of freeze-dried mango each day.

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After 12 weeks, those eating the mango had reduced glucose levels, a result seen in both men and women.

However, no changes were seen in height, or hip and waist circumference or fat mass.

Nevertheless, the results are still considered a positive result for the researchers. Lucas added “We believe this research suggests that mangos may give obese individuals a dietary option in helping them maintain or lower their blood sugar.

“However, the precise component and mechanism has yet to be found and further clinical trials are necessary, particularly in those that have problems with sugar control, such as diabetics, are necessary.”

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What does this mean?

This means that while the results of this study demonstrate the potential health benefits of mangos, this does not mean one should go out and start eating 10 grams of it each day.

More studies are required to confirm these findings that potentially show eating this fruit is where someone should mango to reduce their blood sugar levels.

What is the dietary guidance for someone with type 2 diabetes?

The NHS has a range of tips on the matter. They say: “There’s nothing you cannot eat if you have type 2 diabetes, but you’ll have to limit certain foods.”

However, this doesn’t mean someone with the condition is completely out of the woods or should engage in a free for all.

Charity Diabetes UK warns for example about oils and spreads: “We need some fat in our diet but we need less saturated fat. This is because some saturated fats can increase cholesterol in the blood, increasing the risk of heart disease and stroke.

“These less healthy options are butter, palm nut oil and coconut oil. Healthier saturated fats are foods like olive oil, vegetable oil, rapeseed oil, spreads made from these oils, and nut butters.”

Furthermore, they also warn against any sugar products that claim to be ‘diabetic’, explaining: “We don’t recommend ‘diabetic’ ice cream or sweets.

“It’s now against the law to label any food as diabetic and there’s no evidence to suggest that food for diabetics offers any benefits over eating a healthy balanced diet.”



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