Sunday, May 20, 2007


For centuries, the varied cultures and societies of Southeast Asia have revered the mangosteen. Although the mangosteen has been touted for its splendid flavor, it has also been suggested that use of the whole mangosteen fruit can promote good health. In fact, the whole mangosteen fruit—especially the xanthone-packed rind—has also been utilized in folk medicine to treat a variety of health conditions. As early as 600 AD, scribes in Southeast Asia recorded the use of the mangosteen as a general remedy and healing agent.

Mangosteen: "The Queen of Fruits"

The early benefits of the mangosteen are both broad and convincing. Legend even has it that Queen Victoria offered knighthood to any subject who could bring her a mangosteen fruit in prime condition. Sadly, no one succeeded in delivering the mangosteen. According to the legend, the virtual impossibility of preserving the fruit during the weeks-long journey prohibited anyone outside of the growing regions from enjoying the sensational flavor of the mangosteen. But, some have suggested that thanks to the Queen’s admirable quest, the fruit achieved the heralded title, “Queen of Fruits,” a name still used by mangosteen adorers around the globe.

The Profile

The Profile

man•go•steen – n. 1. an evergreen tree native to Southeast Asia that has leathery leaves and large edible fruit. Latin name: Garcinia mangostana 2. the fruit with a hard, reddish-brown rind and sweet, juicy pulp produced by the mangosteen tree. Also known as “Queen of Fruits.”

pulp – n. soft of fleshy plant tissue such as the inner part of a fruit or vegetable.

per•i•carp – n. the part of a fruit that surround the seed or seeds, including the skin or rind.

an•ti•ox•i•dant – n. any substance that inhibits the destructive effects of oxidation.

xan•thone – n. C13H8O2 a unique class of biologically active compounds possessing numerous bioactive capabilities, such as antioxidant properties. Xanthones—found in the whole mangosteen fruit—may help maintain intestinal health, strengthen the immune system, neutralize free radicals, help support cartilage and joint function, and promote a healthy seasonal respiratory system.*

phy•to•nu•tri•ent – n. derived from the Greek word phyto (plant) and nutrient (a constituent of food necessary for normal physiological function), phytonutrients—also known as phytochemicals—are natural, bioactive compounds found in plant foods.