9 Health Benefits Of Eating Mangoes In Pregnancy

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We all eagerly wait for the king of fruits to hit the summer market. Mangoes are juicy and delicious fruits loved by all. However, it is difficult to resist eating mangoes in pregnancy as women crave more for its sweet-sour taste during this time. Although you may love the sour and tangy raw mangoes as much as the sweet-ripe ones, you may be concerned about the safety of consuming this fruit during pregnancy. Mangoes are packed with several nutrients and minerals but are they good for your growing baby? Read this post to know how much of this fruit is safe in pregnant women, its health benefits, and possible side effects.

In This Article

Is It Safe To Eat Mango During Pregnancy?

It is best to consume no more than one mango a day.

Image: Shutterstock

Yes, you can eat mangoes in pregnancy as they are an excellent source of energy, antioxidants and vital nutrients (1). But it is important to monitor the portions and avoid overindulgence. Mangoes are seasonal fruits and should be consumed at a time when they are naturally available.

In any case, consult your doctor before including the fruit in your diet.

How Many Mangoes Can You Consume When Pregnant?

It is best to consume no more than one mango a day. Also, include mangoes only if your doctor asks you to increase your calorie intake. A 100g serving of mango contains about 15g sugar (2), which makes excessive mango consumption during pregnancy a bad idea, especially if you have issues with gestational diabetesiA type of diabetes that occurs during pregnancy .

Besides sugar, mangoes have several other nutrients that make it a safe food for pregnant women.

Nutritional Value Of Mango

Here is the nutrition breakdown of a 100-gram serving of ripe mangoes (2):

NUTRIENTAMOUNT
Calories60kcal
Carbohydrates14.98g
Protein0.82g
Fiber1.6g
Fat0.38g
Sugar13.66g
Vitamins
Vitamin C36.4mg
Vitamin A54IU
Folic acid43mcg
Pyridoxine0.119mg
Niacin0.669mg
Riboflavin0.038mg
Thiamin0.028mg
Minerals
Potassium168mg
Calcium11mg
Iron0.16mg
Magnesium10mg
Zinc0.09mg
Phosphorus14mg

Mangoes also offer several benefits for pregnant women. Read on to know more about it.

What are the Health Benefits Of Eating Mango During Pregnancy?

The following are the health benefits of consuming mangoes during pregnancy.

1. Iron prevents anemia

Mangoes are rich in vitamin C and help in the nutrient absorption of iron, which an expecting mother needs to overcome pregnancy-related-anemiaiA condition caused due to increased blood volume during pregnancy in which the body does not have sufficient red blood cells (3).

2. Folic acid aids fetal development

Mango is a great source of folic acid which is essential for the development of the fetal brain and spinal cord. Mango consumption prevents the neural tube defectsiSevere congenital abnormality (birth defect) of the neural tube that forms the baby's spine and brain at conception which can occur in early pregnancy (4).

protip_icon Did you know?
Just a 3/4th cup of mango provides you with 15 percent of your recommended daily allowance of folate (18).

3. Dietary fiber manages digestive health

The fiber content in mangoes helps you feel full for a longer duration. Mangoes also aid digestion and prevent constipation that women experience in the first trimester (5).

4. Provides rich antioxidants

Vitamin C in mango acts as a powerful antioxidant that helps develop resistance against free radicals, which can disturb fetal development and even lead to cancers. Vitamin C can also lower the risk of premature birth (6).

5.Vitamin A for baby development

Vitamin A in mangoes helps in baby development

Image: IStock

The vitamin A, abundantly found in mangoes, helps in the formation of baby’s teeth and bones. It is also essential for eye and immune system development and aids in the development of heart, lungs, and kidneys (7).

6. Vitamin B6 ideal for fetal brain and nervous system

protip_icon Quick fact
Vitamin B6 also helps prevent conditions such as eczemaiA skin condition that causes itchy, inflamed, and dry skin and low birth weight (8).

Mango is also a source of vitamin B6, which plays a role in the development of the fetal brain and nervous system (2) (8).

7. Magnesium prevents preeclampsia

Magnesium, present in reasonable amounts in mango, acts as an excellent natural remedy for preeclampsia or increased blood pressure, while the vitamin E in this fruit helps build fetal muscle and prevents preeclampsiaiA high blood pressure condition that occurs during pregnancy (9) (10).

8. Beats morning sickness

Eating mangoes in pregnancy helps beat morning sickness

Image: Shutterstock

The fresh taste of mango helps prevent morning sickness. Vitamin B6 in this fruit also plays a key role in relieving you from nausea and morning sickness (11).

9. Balances body fluids

As the blood volume increases during pregnancy, your body needs extra minerals. Mangoes contain electrolytes such as potassium, calcium, magnesium, and sodium that help in maintaining the fluid balance (12). Electrolytes ensure optimal heart health and make the brain, nerves, and the muscles work as they should.

Although mango offers numerous benefits, you need to be mindful of eating it while pregnant.

Are There Any Side Effects Of Mango During Pregnancy?

The side effects of consuming mangoes during pregnancy include –

  1. Diarrhea: Over consumption of mangoes can cause diarrhea, which can lead to dehydration (13). Dehydration during pregnancy is common and can be dealt with by keeping the diet and nutrition needs in check.

Juliana Tamayo, a registered dietitian from Washington, District of Columbia, says, “There are fermentable carbohydrates in mangoes that can cause sensitivity in some women. During pregnancy, some women might experience irritable bowel syndrome and other gastrointestinal issues that can cause indigestion, gas, and bloating. Nevertheless, mangoes are high in fiber and can keep your gut working regularly, while also helping feed the healthy bacteria.”

  1. Increased risk of gestational diabetes: Mango has high levels of sugars and can put you at a greater risk of diabetes mellitusiA group of metabolic diseases characterized by increased blood glucose (sugar) levels . Eating fewer mangoes, which have a medium Glycemic IndexiA value or a scale to classify foods based on their potential to impact blood glucose levels (GI), can help overcome the risk of gestational diabetes (14). The Centers For Disease Control And Prevention (CDC) reports that gestational diabetes annually impacts 2 to 10% of pregnancies in the US.

Tamayo adds, “Pregnant women who experience gestational diabetes should avoid eating too much mango and always pair the fruit with a source of protein. Also, they should avoid eating it in the mornings to prevent hyperglycemiaiA medical term used for high blood sugar (glucose) .”

  1. Excess weight gain: Mangoes are rich in carbohydrates and add to your already increasing pregnancy weight. So, consume them in moderation as part of a healthy eating plan.
Excess weight gain

Image: Shutterstock

  1. Allergic reactions: Some people can experience allergies when they come in contact with the fruit skin or the sap. If you experience the ‘mango itch’, avoid the fruit (15).
  1. Reactions from artificially ripened mangoes: Mangoes that have been artificially ripened can have an adverse effect on both the mother and the baby. These fruits are ripened using calcium carbide, a toxic substance that contains traces of arsenic and phosphorus.

Consumption of these mangoes could lead to mood swings, sleepiness, headaches, dizziness, confusion, seizuresiA sudden aberrant electrical activity in the brain , mouth ulcers and tingling in hands and feet (16). So only choose mangoes that have been naturally ripened.

How Will You Know If The Mango Is Ripened Naturally Or Artificially?

Artificially ripened mangoes show the following characteristics:

  • Possess a black powdery or grayish-white coat
  • Give out a garlic-like odor
  • Look ripe but remain raw and hard inside
  • Are tasteless and leave a peculiar aftertaste
  • Have a shorter shelf-life and start to show black patches sooner
  • Are soft to touch

Tips to Eat Mangoes Safely

It is not always easy to buy naturally ripened fruits. However, you can take measures to minimize the toxins you ingest by eating a mango that is not organic.

  • Wash the fruit thoroughly: Washing the fruit before consumption helps get rid of any chemical residues. It also removes any contamination by the listeria bacteria from the soil.
Wash the fruit thoroughly

Image: Shutterstock

  • Peel the fruit: Do not eat the skin. Peeling the mango skin after washing will also reduce toxin exposure.
  • Maintain hygiene: Always clean the knives and chopping board before use, and wash your hands after getting in contact with the mangoes.
  • Ripen the fruit at home: To keep toxins away, buy raw mangoes and ripen at home naturally. That eliminates the risk of calcium carbide contamination.

There are some myths about the consumption of mangoes during pregnancy. “I recall a personal experience when I had a craving for mangoes during my pregnancy. There was a commonly held belief in my community that mangoes generate heat and could be harmful. But my doctor assured me it was alright, and moderation was key, shares Mahima Satvik, an Indian mother and writer (i).”

Which Mangoes Are Safe During Pregnancy – Ripe Or Raw?

Consuming ripe and raw mangoes during pregnancy is safe, provided you take them with caution. Ripe fruit offers natural sugars and is an excellent replacement for high-calorie desserts. Ripened mangoes stimulate appetite, aid digestion and improve your complexion.

The raw fruit is rich in vitamins and antioxidants, which help fight morning sickness and acidity, improve immunity, and keep the liver healthy.

Is It Safe To Eat Mango During The Third Trimester?

You can continue to eat mangoes during your final trimester but in smaller quantities. Excessive fruit intake around this time can cause gestational diabetes. Also, avoid mangoes during the final weeks of pregnancy if you have experienced any allergic reactions earlier.

To enjoy mangoes in moderation, consider this recipe.

Mango spinach pregnancy smoothie

This mango and spinach smoothie offers beta-carotene, essential minerals, and fiber. It helps you relax and also cools your tummy.

Mango spinach smoothie for pregnant women

Image: Shutterstock

You will need:

  • 1 ½ cup frozen mango, cubes
  • 10oz orange juice
  • ½ cup Greek yogurt
  • 2 cups spinach
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds

How to:

  1. Put all the ingredients in a blender.
  2. Blend them until you get a smooth mixture.

Preparation time – 5 min
Servings – 4

protip_icon Quick tip
You can add avocados, sunflower seeds, walnuts, hazelnuts, or wheat germ to enhance the nutritional value of your smoothie (19).

Keep reading if you have any more doubts about consuming mangoes during pregnancy.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can mango abort the pregnancy?

Excess intake of raw mango, which is one of the fruits that most pregnant women crave, is considered to increase heat in the body (17). It can trigger bleeding, especially in the third trimester, and thus lead to miscarriage.

2. Can I drink mango shake or juice during pregnancy?

Yes, you can have a mango milkshake or juice without any restrictions. But note that they are high in sugars and calories and should be taken in moderation.

3. Can I eat mango pickle during pregnancy?

You can consider eating mango pickle, but only occasionally.

4. Can I eat dry mango powder during pregnancy?

Yes, you can have dried mango powder (amchur) as it is high in iron. It also prevents acidity and improves skin tone and thus, skin health.

5. Which country’s mango is best in the world?

The Guinness Book of World Records indicates that mangoes grown in coastal regions of the Philippines are considered to be among the best in the world.

Eating mangoes in pregnancy may provide you with various vitamins, minerals, and energy. Mangoes are rich sources of vitamin C, folic acid, vitamin A, and potassium and so, are good for maternal health. The fruit is also a good source of dietary fiber that prevents constipation. You may include mangoes into your diet to enhance the taste and flavor. Although mangoes are safe during pregnancy, you may limit their consumption or eat them in moderation since they contain sugar. Pregnant women with gestational diabetes or diabetes mellitus should seek their prenatal health care provider or doctors’ advice to learn more about consuming mangoes.

Infographic: Benefits Of Consuming Mangoes During Pregnancy

Mango is known as “the king of fruits” for a reason. No one can resist devouring its rich taste. But now that you are pregnant do you have doubts regarding its consumption? To clear your confusion, we shed light on how consuming mangoes helps both mother and baby during pregnancy. Read on!

why you should eat mangoes when pregnant (infographic)

Illustration: Momjunction Design Team

Key Pointers

  • Consuming mangoes during pregnancy provides one with essential nutrients and antioxidants.
  • It is advised not to consume more than one mango a day during pregnancy to avoid complications related to gestational diabetes.
  • Mangoes also help develop the fetus’s nervous system and brain.
  • To avoid the risk of toxin contamination, it is advised to purchase raw mangoes from the market and ripen them at home.
  • Consult your healthcare professional about any questions about consuming mangoes during pregnancy.
Eating Mangoes In Pregnancy_illustration

Image: Dall·E/MomJunction Design Team

Personal Experience: Source

References

MomJunction's articles are written after analyzing the research works of expert authors and institutions. Our references consist of resources established by authorities in their respective fields. You can learn more about the authenticity of the information we present in our editorial policy.
  1. Eating during pregnancy.
    https://www.open.edu/openlearncreate/mod/oucontent/view.php?id=316§ion=8.4.2
  2. Mango.
    https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/454102/nutrients
  3. How to assess iron deficiency anemia and use the hemocue?
    https://pdf.usaid.gov/pdf_docs/Pnacw824.pdf
  4. Kick off the New Year with Folic Acid!
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6770070/
  5. Kanjana Mahattanatawee et al.; (2006); Total Antioxidant Activity and Fiber Content of Select Florida-Grown Tropical Fruits.
    https://www.ars.usda.gov/ARSUserFiles/66210000/reprint969.pdf
  6. Anna Maria Siega-Riz et al.; (2003); Vitamin C intake and the risk of preterm delivery.
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/14520228/
  7. Vitamin A.
    https://lpi.oregonstate.edu/mic/vitamins/vitamin-A
  8. Natural Sources of Vitamin B During Pregnancy.
    https://americanpregnancy.org/healthy-pregnancy/pregnancy-health-wellness/natural-sources-of-vitamin-b-during-pregnancy/
  9. Elaheh Zarean and Amal Tarjan; (2017); Effect of Magnesium Supplement on Pregnancy Outcomes: A Randomized Control Trial.
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5590399/
  10. Vitamin E supplementation in pregnancy.
    https://www.cochrane.org/CD004069/PREG_vitamin-e-supplementation-pregnancy
  11. Vitamin B6.
    https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/vitamin-b6/
  12. Fluid and Electrolyte Balance.
    https://medlineplus.gov/fluidandelectrolytebalance.html
  13. Measuring the Impact of Health Education Modules in Cameroon West Africa.
    https://scholarworks.gvsu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?referer=https://www.google.co.in/&httpsredir=1&article=1011&context=kcon_articles
  14. Healthy eating for Gestational Diabetes Mellitus.
    https://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.364.2933&rep=rep1&type=pdf
  15. How to avoid mango’s itch.
    http://www.nutritionatc.hawaii.edu/HO/2005/309.htm
  16. Ashraf-ur-Rahman et al.; (2008); Artificial ripening: what we are eating.
    https://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.606.9220&rep=rep1&type=pdf
  17. Caitlyn Placek; (2017); A test of four evolutionary hypotheses of pregnancy food cravings: evidence for the social bargaining model.
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5666241/
  18. Folate for Momma and Baby;
    https://www.mango.org/blog-folate-for-momma/
  19. Pregnancy Smoothies;
    https://americanpregnancy.org/healthy-pregnancy/pregnancy-health-wellness/pregnancy-smoothies/
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Jyoti Benjamin
Jyoti BenjaminMS, RD, CSO, FAND, CD
Jyoti Benjamin has 25 years of experience as a clinical dietitian and currently works in Seattle. She focuses on teaching people the value of good nutrition and helping them lead healthy lives by natural means.Benjamin has a masters in Foods and Nutrition, and has been a longtime member and Fellow of AND (Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics) and the International Confederation of Dietetic Association.

Read full bio of Jyoti Benjamin
  • Juliana Tamayo
    Juliana TamayoMS, RD, LDN Juliana Tamayo is a registered dietitian based out of Washington, DC. She did her MS at Kansas State University and works as a clinical dietitian at MedStar Washington Hospital Center. Juliana specializes in health and nutrition, chronic illnesses, and alternative healing and have over two years of experience in the field.
    Juliana Tamayo is a registered dietitian based out of Washington, DC. She did her MS at Kansas State University and works as a clinical dietitian at MedStar Washington Hospital Center. Juliana specializes in health and nutrition, chronic illnesses, and alternative healing and have over two years of experience in the field.
Rebecca is a pregnancy writer and editor with a passion for delivering research-based and engaging content in areas of fertility, pregnancy, birth, and post-pregnancy. She did her graduation in Biotechnology and Genetics from Loyola Academy, Osmania University and obtained a certification in ‘Nutrition and Lifestyle in Pregnancy’ from Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich (LMU).

Read full bio of Rebecca Malachi
Swati Patwal
Swati PatwalM.Sc. (Food & Nutrition), MBA
Swati Patwal is a clinical nutritionist, a Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE) and a toddler mom with more than a decade of experience in diverse fields of nutrition. She started her career as a CSR project coordinator for a healthy eating and active lifestyle project catering to school children.

Read full bio of Swati Patwal
Dr. Joyani Das
Dr. Joyani DasM.Pharm, PhD
Dr. Joyani Das did her post-graduation from Birla Institute of Technology, Mesra and PhD in Pharmacology. Previously, she worked as an associate professor, faculty of Pharmacology, for two years. With her research background in preclinical studies and a zeal for scientific writing, she joined MomJunction as a health writer.

Read full bio of Dr. Joyani Das