Mangosteen Side Effects - Is it Safe for Everyone to Consume?

 Is Mangosteen Safe? - On this page:

You have heard about the wonderful health benefits of mangosteen. Despite that mangosteen is a natural fruit, is it safe for everyone to consume? 

If it is a supplement, are there any precautions that you need to be aware of while taking the mangosteen supplements?

In fact, there can be side effects and undesirable reactions when beginning to use the mangosteen, just like some people may be allergic to certain food like soy or apple which majority do not, and it is not known until they have tried the food. However, these are not life threatening and they are not as dangerous as the side effects of drugs.


The Potential Mangosteen Side Effects that You May Experience

The side effects or it should be so called allergic reaction to mangosteen fruit can be classified as 2 groups:

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Mild allergic reactions – the symptoms

  • Skin redness
  • Swelling
  • Itching
  • Rash

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Detoxification or positive healing crisis – the symptoms

  • Joint pain
  • Mild headache
  • Aching muscle
  • Stomach upset
  • Loose stools
  • Insomnia
  • Interrupted sleep

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All above allergies are more inconvenient and discomfort, but none of them are life threatening. As for detoxification and positive healing effects, the symptoms are temporary. These are due to the body’s liver and kidney are overwhelmed by the new substance and reject it.

My Advice:

If you have any of the above symptoms from mangosteen side effects, you should stop using the mangosteen fruit or product.  If you are consuming the supplement, you can begin at a lower dosage after the symptoms disappear. The dosage can be as low as a single teaspoon (5ml) taken with a meal. If no allergic reaction occurs, increase the dosage gradually by adding one 5 ml extra every day or two. This can help the body to accept the mangosteen juice gradually and eventually get accustomed to it without any adverse reaction. If the symptoms persist, this is obvious that the person cannot take mangosteen. However, cases of people allergic to mangosteen are rare.

In the event that persistent nausea, vomiting, shortness of breath, dizziness, light-headedness, feeling cold, weight loss occur, one should stop using the mangosteen juice immediately and consult the doctor. Bear in mind that sometimes, the sign or symptoms of serious disease could occur coincidentally with starting the mangosteen.


Is there any way to test of one could be allergic to mangosteen?

Yes. There is a test one can perform.

  1. Thoroughly wash an area on the under part of the upper arm.
  2. Lightly scratch the skin just enough to draw blood with a clean pin or needle.
  3. Place a bandaged soaked with mangosteen juice over the scratch area.
  4. Leave it for 36 to 48 hours and observe if any swelling, redness, itching or rash occurs.

If symptoms occur, one might be allergic to mangosteen and he or she should start with lower serving as 5ml.  Or alternatively, is to stop using the juice for a week and then begin to use and see if the reaction returns.

Any Food Drug Effects on Mangosteen?

Based on study so far, there is no known interaction between mangosteen and drug and it has been reported that thousands of people who are taking different drugs have not experienced any mangosteen side effects. However, there should never be assumed that mangosteen is automatically safe with all medications. When in doubt, it is best to consult a doctor if you are on special medications and known medical condition. After all, other fruits (such as grapefruit) are known to interact with several medications.

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Who Should Avoid Taking Mangosteen? 

Mangosteen is safe for most of the people except for the following people. For safety measure and the purpose of avoiding the potential mangosteen side effects, they are advised to take certain precautions.

  • Infants should not use mangosteen until fruit has been successfully added to their diet. Infants have “leaky gut” which means that certain molecules which would not cross the gut to the bloodstream in an adult, can do so in the infants, consequences can be adverse.
  • Pregnant woman or breastfeeding woman:There are many pregnant women have takenmangosteen juice with no adverse effect. However, pregnant or breastfeeding woman always need to be more careful on their diet as in what is suitable for them. When complications happen in pregnant woman such as gestational diabetes or blood pressure, please discuss the use of mangosteen supplement with your physician as you would do with any dietary change. Also, if you had experienced any adverse outcome from pregnancy previously, I do not recommend the mangosteen supplement to be started during pregnancy.
  • Coumadin Patients: Mangosteen does not contain vitamin K and there should be no major concern on mangosteen and drug interaction. However, since mangosteen juice promotes red blood cells, as a precaution, there is a test to help the pateints to determine the appropriate coumadin dosage and to check any potential food drug interaction. The Coumadin users take the intended amount of mangosteen juice daily for 3 or 4 days, and go for blood test (INR) on the 4th or 5th day with their doctor and determine if there is a need to change the coumadin dosage.
  • Polycythemia Rubra Vera: Polycythemia Rubra Vera is a rare condition, where the affected person produces too many red blood cells. Mangosteen can increase red cell mass and therefore should not be used by people diagnosed with polycythemia rubra vera.
  • Hemachromatosis Patients and Organ Transplant Recipients:  Suggest not to use mangosteen juice more than 1 oz(30ml) per day. Study to determine the ideal dosage in these conditions is still under study.
  • Cancer Chemotherapy Drugs: Person who is on cancer chemotherapy drugs is advised to consult the doctor on the mode of action of the drug. Some cancer chemotherapy drugs' mode of action depends on the production of free radicals to destroy tumors. Mangosteen contains powerful antioxidants to remove free radicals. If the mode of action of the drugs does not depend on free radicals, then the mangosteen will not interfere with the drug’s mode of action.

The above are all the mangosteen side effects that I compiled from various health resources and the books by Dr J Frederic Templeman. The final note, for those who are on chronic medications or medical conditions which are not listed here, it is wise to consult your doctor whenever you decide to start any dietary supplement program.

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