African Mango (Irvingia gabonensis) Extract for Weight Loss: A Systematic Review


  • Amber N McLendon Campbell University College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences and Glenaire, Inc. P.O. Box 1090, Buies Creek, North Carolina 27506, USA
  • Justin Spivey PGY1 Pharmacy Resident, Medical University of South Carolina College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences and Glenaire, Inc., 150 Ashley Avenue, P.O. Box MSC132, Charleston, South Carolina 29425, USA
  • C. Brock Woodis Campbell University College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences and Duke Medicine, Department of Community and Family Medicine, 2100 Erwin Road, Box 3886 DUMC, Durham, North Carolina, 27710, USA



African mango, Irvingia gabonensis, weight, obesity, adiponectin


Objective: The objective of this review is to assess the effectiveness and safety of African mango (Irvingia gabonensis) extract on weight loss in humans.

Design: A systematic review of articles evaluating the effect of African mango, IGOB131, dikanut, bush mango or Irvingia gabonensis on weight and obesity was conducted.

Population: Three randomized, controlled trials were identified and met criteria for inclusion in the review with a total of 214 subjects receiving Irvingia gabonensis at various doses alone or in combination with other dietary supplements versus placebo over a period of four to ten weeks.

Results: All studies demonstrated a decrease in weight ranging from 4-12kg (p<0.05). Other measures of weight loss including body fat percentage (p<0.05) and waist circumference (p<0.01) were also significantly decreased by Irvingia gabonensis. Improvements were also seen in total cholesterol, low density lipoprotein and fasting blood glucose. Few adverse events were reported but include insomnia, flatulence and headache.

Conclusions: Irvingia gabonensis demonstrates potential for significant weight loss of up to 12 kilograms in overweight and obese subjects over a period of 10 weeks with few reported adverse events. Larger studies including subjects from multiple countries for 6 to 12 months should be conducted to elucidate the long-term effects in various populations.



Gooda SN, Saari N, Ismail A, Khatib A, Mahomoodally F, Abdul HA. Plants' metabolites as potential antiobesity agents. Sci World J 2012; p. doi.10.11002012/436039. DOI:

Ogden CL, Carroll MD, Kit BK, Flegal KM. Prevalence of Obesity in the United States, 2009-2010. NCHS data brief, no 82. National Center for Health Statistics, Hyattsville, MD 2012.

Trust for America's Health. F as in Fat: How obesity threatens America's future., Washington, DC 2012.

National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. Clinical Guidelines on the Identification, Evaluation and Treatment of Overweight and Obestiy in Adults, No. 98-4083. National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 1998.

Finkelstein EA, Trogdon JG, Cohen JW, Dietz W. Annual Medical Spending Attributed to Obestity: Payer and Service-Specific Estimates. Health Affairs 2009; 28(5): w822-w831. DOI:

Marketdata Enterprises, Inc., The U.S. Weight Loss and Diet Control Market, 11th ed. Tampa, FL. 2011.

Xenical [package insert], Genetech USA, Inc., South San Fransisco, CA 2012.

Qsymia [package insert], Vivus, Inc., Mountain View, CA 2012.

Pittler MH, Ernst E. Dietary Supplements for Body Weight Reduction: a Systematic Review. Am J Clin Nutr 2004; 79: 529-36. DOI:

Lemogoum D, Ngatchou W, Janssen C, Leeman M, Van Bortel L, Boutouyerie P, et al. Effects of Hunter-Gatherer Subsistence Mode on Arterial Distensibility in Cameroonian Pgymies. Hypertension 2012; 60(1): 123-128. DOI:

Ngondi JL, Oben JE, Minka SR. The effect of Irvingia gabonensis seeds on body weight and blood lipids of obese subjects in Cameroon. Lipids Health Disease 2005; 4: 12. DOI:

Oben JE, Ngondi JL, Blum K. Inhibition of Irvingia gobonensis seed extract (OB131) on adipogenesis as mediated via down regulation of PPARgamma and Leptin genes and up-regulation of adiponectin gene. Lipids Health Disease 2008; 7: 44. DOI:

Oben JE, Ngondi JL, Momo CN, Agbor GA, Makamto Sobgui CS. The use of a Cissus quadrangularis/Irvingia gabonensis combination in the management of weight loss: a double-blind placebo-controlled study. Lipids Health Disease 2008; 7: 12: doi:10.1186/1476-511X-7-12. DOI:

Ngondi JL, Etoundi BC, Nyangono CB, Mbofung CMF, Oben JE. IGOB131, a novel seed extract of the West African plant Irvingia gabonensis, significantly reduces body weight and improves metabolic parameters in overweight humans in a randomized, double-blind placebo controlled investigation. Lipids Health Disease 2009; 8: 7. doi.10.1186/1476-511X-8-7. DOI:




How to Cite

McLendon, A. N., Spivey, J., & Woodis, C. B. (2013). African Mango (Irvingia gabonensis) Extract for Weight Loss: A Systematic Review. Journal of Nutritional Therapeutics, 2(1), 53–58.