How many fruits come to mind when somebody asks you about them? The most common ones, of course! Such as Apples, Bananas, Oranges, Pears, and Melons, right? Well, the world has a lot more to offer than these. We can hardly name about ten or at the most 20 fruits! That’s it!
There is a massive variety of fruits in the world. We only see the tip of the iceberg- underneath it’s an ocean of fruits. One such fruit is the Mangosteen!
The Mangosteen is found naturally in Southeast Asia, where it is hot and humid. Places like the Malaysian peninsula, Thailand, Indonesia, Borneo, and Sumatra are natives of these tropical evergreen trees.
As these trees grow very slowly, they take up to almost ten years before they bear fruit. The soil must be rich, deep and must have water-retaining capacities for the trees to grow well.
Did you know the Mangosteen (garcinia mangostana) from the garcinia family is technically a berry! We may not know, but there might be many wild types of mangosteen fruits out there in the world.
General Appearance and Flavor
The Mangosteen fruit weighs around 50 to 150 grams. They are between four to eight centimeters in diameter. The outer skin of the fruit is thick, leathery, and purple. Mangosteens have a kind of green crown on the top. When cut open, the inside has creamy white flesh divided into segments with four to seven pieces in them.
You can compare the taste of the Mangosteen, which is sweet and tangy, to a mixture of fruits like lychee, pineapples, peach, and strawberries.
Known as the queen of fruits, the Mangosteen, with its refreshingly sweet and juicy flavors, can be eaten out of hand, it can be made into a jam, or you can enjoy it with your favorite yogurts and ice creams. Either way, you will love it!
Types of Mangosteen
If we talk about Australia, most of the mangosteen fruit is grown in the far north of Queensland and Darwin. The two types that have been identified here are either oblong or spherical in shape.
There is a distinct variety of the fruit in the Sulu Islands, which have a larger and more acidic fruit, and the outside rind is much thicker.
Alongside these two common purple varieties, some other types of Mangosteen have also been cultivated. These include;
Yellow Mangosteen (Garcinia Dulcis)
This fruit turns from green to yellow when ripe. The juicy pulp tastes from sour to sweet, creamy, and really nice. It is like a delicious blend of lychee, strawberry, and peach, almost divine!
This particular variety of Mangosteen is native to the Mayanmar region, Philippines, Indonesia, and India.
The Garcia Dulcis and the Garcia Xanthochymus are not easy to differentiate between. The former has larger wide leaves, and the latter has small narrow leaves.
Cambogia Mangosteen (Garcinia Cambogia)
Garcinia Cambogia is also known as Brindleberry and Malabar Tamarind. This fruit has been in use as a food preservative and accompanying condiment since early times. It is said to promote weight loss and bring relief to joint pains. In addition, it improves digestion.
The Cambogia fruit looks very similar to a small pumpkin and ranges in color from green to pale yellow.
Lemondrop Mangosteen (Garcinia Madruno)
Another name of this fruit is Lemondrop Mangosteen. It originates in Eastern Amazon. It is also grown now in Panama, Venezuela, Costa Rica, and the Guianas. It is not very well known outside southern and central America but has recently been introduced into the state of Florida.
It has a yellowish rind like a lemon. It makes an excellent jam. The yellow latex of the tree has been used in the treatment of ulcers and other sores.
Seashore Mangosteen (Garcinia Hombroniana)
This variety is an ultra-rare type of Mangosteen. The Garcinia hombroniana is native to Asia and is also known as Red Mangosteen, Seashore Mangosteen, or Beach Mangosteen. Seashore Mangosteen is found in Peninsular Malaysia, from lowland woods by the sea to lower mountain forests and the highlands. It grows on the Nicobar Islands and is farmed in the tropics on a seasonal basis. The fruit is grown in Kerala and Tamil Nadu in India.
It is a little tree that grows near the coast and can withstand more salt and sand than other purple mangosteens. Many people believe it is harder when compared to the Purple Mangosteen.
Fruits start as green and turn pinkish-red as they mature. They have smooth skin and grow up to 5 cm in diameter. The fragrance is apple-like, and the pulp is yellowish and acidic.
Its aromatic fruit is often used in juices and jellies, and the plant itself stands out against the landscape.
Health and Medicinal uses
After drying, the rind is turned into a powder and used as medicine to overcome dysentery, diarrhea, and cystitis in adults as well as children.
Its ointment is used for skin infections and eczema. The Mangosteen has a rich supply of fiber, nutrients, and antioxidants, providing numerous other health benefits. Low in calories, yet highly nutritious, it maintains body functions, increases immunity and resistance.
Being highly antioxidant, it neutralizes the damaging effects of harmful free radicals, leading to chronic diseases.
The Mangosteen fruit has also been used to treat a large number of diseases, including bacterial infections, tumors, hypertension, arthritis, and diabetes. It promotes red blood cells and prevents anemia.
Research on the Mangosteen fruit and its varieties is still ongoing to uncover more potential benefits of this exotic fruit! We hope going through this article makes you go out and try the Mangosteen fruit out for yourself!