History of the Mangosteen
The Mangosteen, or Garcinia mangostana, was named for Dr. Laurentiers Garcin, a French doctor, priest and explorer, who was the first to scientifically study the Mangosteen. He noted its long-standing use in traditional Asian medicines, as reference to such use was found in records dating back to the Ming Dynasty in China.
The Mangosteen is the national fruit of Thailand, and is common throughout Southeast Asia. Legend holds that Queen Victoria of England so loved the Mangosteen that she offered varying rewards — from money to knighthood — to anyone who could bring her a Mangosteen in pristine ripeness.
Growing the Mangosteen
The Mangosteen is a very slow-growing fruit tree. Young trees do not produce fruit generally until 10 years of age. The prime harvest period for most Mangosteen trees is between 20 and 45 years old, with many trees still producing fruit after 100 years. Mangosteen trees can grow to be as tall as 75 feet, and harvesting must be done by hand, as the result of a hard fall can severely damage the fruit.
Mangosteen trees need humid, tropical environments to thrive and produce fruit. Because of the specific environmental requirements, cultivation of the Mangosteen has been largely confined to plantations in its native habitats of Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines. Expansion of Mangosteen cultivation has been attempted in Sri Lanka, South India, Central and South America, Australia, Brazil, and Florida and Hawaii in the United States, all with mixed results and only small harvests where the cultivation has been successful.
How to Eat a Mangosteen
Fresh Mangosteen is best opened using only your hands. Within the first few days of harvesting, the purple rind of the fruit remains soft, and the fruit inside can be exposed with a gentle squeeze and twist of the rind. If possible, avoid using a knife to prevent damage to the fruit segments inside.
Outside of major cultivation areas, Mangosteen fruit are likely to be several days away from ripeness. At that point, the outer rind will be hard you will have to use a knife. Run the knife at a shallow level around the rind of the fruit, parallel to the stem. The rind is very bitter and the stains from the rind are difficult to remove, so be careful not only to avoid spilling the juice from the rind onto stainable services (including skin) but also to avoid mixing bits of the rind with the inner fruit.
Once opened, the edible inner segments will be seen. Generally, one segment will contain the seed(s), so take care when eating the individual segments.
Scientists also are conducting trials with Mangosteen peel as potential HIV drug for future treatments.
Here are most common health benefits of Mangosteen skin properties:
Anti-fatigue (energy booster / energize)
Powerful anti-inflammatory (prevents inflammation / anti-inflammatory)
Analgesic (prevents pain / prevent nerve pain)?
Anti-ulcer (stomach, mouth and bowel ulcers)
Anti-depressant (low to moderate / preventing depression)
Anxyolytic (anti-anxiety effect / prevent anxiety, panic & anxiety)
Anti-Alzheimerian (helps Prevent dementia / prevent penyegah Alzheimeria)
Anti-tumor and cancer prevention (shown to be capable of killing cancer cells / Prevent cancer)
Immunomodulator (helps the immune system / immune system)
Anti-aging (anti aging)
Anti-oxidant (Remove toxic / poison in the body)
Anti-viral (kills germs)
Anti-biotic (modulates bacterial infections)
Anti-fungal (prevents fungal infections / fungal infections)
Anti-seborrheaic (prevents skin disorders / skin mencantikkan)
Anti-lipidemic (blood fat lowering / remove cholesterol)
Anti-atherosclerotic (prevents hardening of arteries)
Cardioprotective (Protects the heart / to the heart)
Hypotensive (lowering blood pressure / blood pressure lowering)
Hypoglycemic (anti-diabetic effect, helps lower blood sugar / reduced sugar in the blood)
Anti-obesity (helps with weight loss / gain kuruskan)
Anti-arthritic (prevention of arthritis / prevent bone pain)
Anti-osteoporosis (helps prevent the loss of bone mass / brittle bones)
Anti-periodontic (prevents gum disease / prevent bleeding gums)
Anti-allergenic (prevents allergic reaction)
Anti-calculitic (prevents kidney stones / rocks prevented)
Anti-pyretic (fever lowering / lowered body temperature)
Anti-Parkinson (Parkinson neurological diseases)
Anti-diarrheal (preventing diarrhea)
Anti-neuralgic (reduces nerve pain / nerve pain)
Anti-vertigo (prevents dizziness)
Anti-glaucomic (prevents glaucoma / eye pain)
Anti-cataract (prevents cataracts)
Pansystemic (has a synergistic effect on the whole body / Offsetting the whole body)
Maintains optimal thyroid function
Side Effects of Mangosteen
Mangosteen may cause some side effects in hyper-sensitive individuals, including those who have allergies to fruits.
Additionally, some Mangosteen products in the market include extracts from other fruits that also may cause allergic reactions or side effects.
Allergic reactions like headaches, itchy skin rashes and minor or transient joint pains are possible. The reported allergic reactions from Mangosteen, though, do not involve respiratory problems or life-threatening situations.
Loose Stools or Constipation
Those who begin their supplementation with servings of more than one ounce of Mangosteen supplement may experience temporary loose stools.
Also, in the constipation-predominant type of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), and in diabetic patients diagnosed with gastroparesis complication, more than one ounce a day may worsen the constipation.
In these instances, reducing the servings will likely solve the problem.
Polycythemia Rubra Vera
Mangosteen can increase red cell mass and therefore should not be used by people diagnosed with polycythemia rubra vera.
Some fruits and foods are known to affect the mode of action and efficacy of certain drugs.
For example, large quantities of grapefruit juice can affect the blood levels of some drugs (e.g., lipid-lowering drugs) and may alter these drugs’ effects in the body.
Also, certain foods can either speed up or slow down the liver’s drug-detoxification activity when these foods also affect the elements of the P450 enzyme system involved in the drug-detoxification process. There is no precise information yet on how the Mangosteen may affect the P450 enzyme system.
As of this writing, there has not been any reported adverse food-drug interactions with the Mangosteen despite its use by thousands of people using a wide variety of commonly prescribed drugs.
Although this is not to be taken to mean that food-drug interactions do not exist, a level of confidence continues to be established as far as the fruit is concerned.
Foods that contain vitamin K can affect Coumadin blood levels. In his book, “Mangosteen: The X-Factor”*, Dr. J. Frederic Templeman suggests that Coumadin users drink the juice “at the dose they intend to consume daily and, after 3 days of use at this level, to go into the doctor’s office to have a finger-prick check of the Coumadin’s effect.”
He says that many consumers on Coumadin use the Mangosteen supplement safely, and that he has “not received a documented report of Coumadin problems where the supplement appeared to be the culprit.”
Cancer Chemotherapy Drugs
Some cancer chemotherapy drugs’ mode of action depends on the production of free radicals to destroy tumors. Because Mangosteen contains powerful antioxidants that fight free radicals, it would be wise to ask the pharmacist or consult the Physician’s Desk Reference on the Internet on the mode of action of any particular cancer chemotherapy drug.
If the mode of action of a chemotherapy drug has nothing to do with the production of free radicals, such that Mangosteen’s powerful antioxidants will not interfere with the drug’s mode of action, then it may be wise to consider the highly beneficial effects the fruit can provide cancer chemotherapy patients.
Several studies proved that high regular doses of antioxidants, such as those available from the Mangosteen, clearly suppressed cancerous cell growth.
Summary of Mangosteen Side Effects
So who should take some precautions because of some potential Mangosteen side effects or allergic reactions?
Individuals with allergies to fruits, polycythemia rubra vera patients, Coumadin users, or cancer patients taking chemotherapy drugs whose efficacy relies on the production of free radicals, are some of the known caveats.
Please consult with your Physician before trying this fruit as a treatment for of the above mentioned. Also keep in mind that if purchasing products that claim to contain the Mangosteen fruit, please be sure to verify if these statements have been evaluated by the FDA.
We are not Physician and therefore do not claim that this fruit will treat, cure or prevent any disease. This article is for informative purposes only.