It is then no wonder that more mangos are eaten fresh the world over than any other fruit!
Known as the 'king of fruit' throughout the world, the mango derived its name from the Tamil word 'mangkai'. When the Portuguese traders settled in Western India, they adopted the name as 'manga'. And believe it or not, but there are over a 1,000 varieties of mangoes in this world.
In India, the ubiquitous mango has found its way into the intricate weaves of its traditional and cultural fabric. To the Indians, the mango is a symbol of love, abundance and prosperity.
The Hindus hang fresh mango leaves above their doors during festive occasions, invoking blessings to their homes. Mangoes leaves hung on weddings symbolise fertility and are believed to bless the couple with plenty of children.
The ancient Indian science of medicine, Ayurveda, uses different parts of the mango tree to cure various ailments.
And hey, what's with Indian women and their penchant for the mango motif? Very traditional and extremely popular, the mango motif gives in to the endless possibilities of design and creativity.
From exquisite jewellery patterns to traditional saree weaves, its popularity has spread from white chikan embroidery to kasuti of Karnataka, kalamkaris of Andhra, baluchar saris of West Bengal, bandhanis of Rajasthan and Gujarat and to the weavers of Tamil Nadu.
As it moves across India, taking on various shapes and colours, it spreads prosperity, fertility and an inexhaustible abundance of life.
And why not? Besides being extremely delicious, as mango lovers would fervently tell you, the fruit is rich in vitamins, minerals and anti-oxidants. Mangoes also act as a digestive aid, contain plenty of fibre. Mangoes are an excellent source of Vitamins A and C, as well as a good source of Potassium and contain beta carotene. What's more, they are low in calories!
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