What Is a Mango Diet?

Britt Archer

The mango diet is a plan for weight loss that relies heavily on the consumption of the seed extract from a wild African fruit, the bush mango, Irvingia gabonensis. This African mango variety is not the same fruit that is sold widely on grocery store produce shelves, a South Asian variety known as Mangifera indica. Advocates of the mango diet say the African variety contains a special ingredient that helps speed weight loss by flushing fat from the body, a compound called IGOB131. Proponents say the fiber contained in this mango’s seeds energizes fat loss while cutting cholesterol levels.

Mango chutney.
Mango chutney.

Opponents of the mango diet do not believe the claims of special fibers and quick weight loss, and they say the mango diet is nothing more than a scheme to line the pockets of the diet’s promoters. Opponents also say other popular and more common fruits available in a grocery possess fiber and efficient cholesterol-lowering properties, including apples, pears, figs, nectarines, oranges and dates. Unlike the mango diet’s claims for the African mango, these common fruits alone will not reduce weight without a person also following a sensible diet and cutting back on calories. To put it bluntly, the mango diet puts forth an alleged get-skinny-quick plan, while opponents say it is nothing but a diet scam.

Mango is a popular tropical fruit.
Mango is a popular tropical fruit.

The special diet that relies on the bush mango requires the purchase of capsules that contain an extract made from the fruit’s seeds. A research study conducted in Africa found that people who took these capsules two times a day lost weight and experienced other health benefits. Each capsule contained 150 milligrams of the special seed extract. Some participants experienced gas, sleep disturbances and headaches, but the number of participants who experienced these side effects was the same as the number in a placebo group who also had these side effects without consuming the capsules. Opponents of this diet say more and larger studies need to be performed to accurately gauge this ingredient’s results.

The more common mango, Mangifera indica, is often referred to as “the king of fruit.” It is an excellent source of beta carotene, which the body converts to an antioxidant, vitamin A in the form of retinol. This antioxidant is beneficial for the skin and also for eyesight. The mango tree’s leaves are toxic, but there are many mango recipes and mango dishes that rely on the tree's fruit for delicious flavor.

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Discussion Comments


@anamur-- I believe it's a 'weight loss supplement.' So it is a supplement that helps reduce weight. I also heard about this on TV, I think it was on Dr. Oz Show. It's supposed to increase the amount of leptin in the body which is what tells our brain that we are full. So if you take mango seed extract regularly, you should feel less hungry and that will help with the weight.

My sister-in-law is trying it right now and she says it works. But she did a lot of research to find the right supplement that's made by a proven manufacturer. She said that there were some online that didn't look very trustworthy.

I think it's worth trying if you get a quality one without chemical additives and also check with your doctor first.


@turquoise-- So is this a supplement or a diet pill?

I saw these pills being sold on TV and they claimed that it suppresses appetite and speeds up weight loss. I think that makes it a diet pill right?

I'm against diet pills because they're not healthy or trustworthy. A new one comes out every week and is taken off the shelves soon after by the FDA. If it's a supplement, that's different because supplements if they are certified organic will be all natural and won't have chemicals in them.

I'm trying to lose weight and I have lost very little in the last three months despite dieting and exercising. So I'm looking for something that can help boost my metabolism and burn more fat.

Has anyone actually tried the mango pills? What do you think about them?


I thought the mango diet was a diet of just mangoes, like some detox fruit diets that are out there. I'm glad that I read the article and learned what it really is.

I have never purchased or taken mango seed extract but I have taken supplements like grape seed extract. I know that fruit seed extracts are rich in antioxidants and fiber which is beneficial when trying to lose weight because it delays hunger and stabilizes blood sugar. And if the African mango really has some more special properties, it might be even more beneficial.

But I agree with the article that it can't be responsible for weight loss alone. It would have to be an addition to proper diet and exercise.

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