Nutritional qualities and Benefits

The link between diet and health has been scientifically established and validated over the years. For example, about a third of deaths from cancer may be traced to our diet. It is so true: You are what you eat.
Variety is one key to a long and active life. You cannot stick to one particular food group or a few food items. Like many animals we need to forage to make sure we get all the nutrients necessary for our health.

We need at least 5-7 servings of fruits and vegetables. They are the most common and richest sources of antioxidants that feed on free radicals, prevent them from connecting with our healthy cells, damaging them, and triggering off degenerative diseases such as cancer and arthritis. Vitamins A, C and E, beta-carotene, lutein, lycopene and selenium are powerful antioxidants. But many other substances, produced by our body or present in our food, are antioxidants or function like antioxidants. Such as xanthones.
Xanthones are organic compounds which can be found in plants such as St. John's wort. They affect the nervous system, improving the mood of the depressed, reducing the appetite and producing feelings of satisfaction, contentment and well being.

One of the richest sources of these xanthones (a total of 40 out of 200 identified so far) is the purple rind of the mangosteen fruit. Recent studies have discovered new xanthones, including mangosharin and mangostingone. The xanthones garcinol and mangostin are said to be potential anti-inflammatory agents that impede or obstruct carcinogens while garcinol may also be useful in weight control. In one study, a combination of xanthones from mangosteen and regular antibiotics was seen to be useful against specific bacteria. In another study, xanthones appeared to be useful in bolstering the immune system and in improving the over-all health of people.

Aside from xanthones, the mangosteen rind also contains tannins, which are beneficial substances also present in black tea, green tea and cranberries. Tannins have anti-inflammatory, antiseptic and astringent properties. In Asian traditional medicine, herbal healers use the dried and powdered rind.