Health Benefits of Bananas

Healthy bananas

I always knew, that bananas are good for me :-)
They're sweet and tasty, give quick energy, and offer plenty of nutritional value.

Below you can read about the many health benefits of bananas.

Banana Nutritional Benefits and Facts

First of all I have to tell you an unpleasant truth: ripe bananas have much more of the nutritional value and benefits. And "ripe" means slightly brownish. We're used to buying and eating bright yellow or even greenish bananas (like in the photo above), and were taught that "yellow is good", when in fact, it's "unripe".

In South America, where bananas naturally occur, people don't eat them before the peel turns brownish and the flesh turns sweet and soft. That might shock you, because we feel they're already "rotten" in that state.

Give it a try and see if you can adapt to the new and sweeter taste. If not, then eating yellow bananas is still better than eating none at all :-)

Personally I like to use the brown ones for smoothies and shakes. They have so much natural sweetness, that you don't need to use sugar.


Top 7 Health Benefits of Bananas

1. Huge Potassium Source 

One fruit provides you with 10-15% of the recommended daily potassium dose. This mineral is needed to regulate blood pressure and keep your heart pumping at a steady rate. If you're constantly feeling week and faint, a potassium deficit might be the cause.

Potassium is also needed for strong bones. Eating enough of this mineral prevents the loss of calcium in your body. This is important for two reasons: first calcium excretion might cause kidney stones, and second it takes the all-important bone-builder out of your body. This is especially destructive for kids, who are still growing and need a lot more calcium than we do.

Did I already mention, that a high level of potassium can even help to overcome stress? Next time you feel stressed out, don't drink a coffee, but sit back and eat a banana! It will also help to raise your brain power.  Research has shown that the potassium-packed fruit can assist learning by making pupils more alert.


2. Instant Long-Lasting Energy

Bananas are the perfect snack when you need energy instantly. This is due to a) the high amount of fiber they contain and b) three types of natural sugars: sucrose, fructose and glucose.

The combination does not only give you instant energy, but also prevents a sugar-spike and makes the energy last for about 90 minutes. That's why you will often see athletes in endurance sports eating bananas.

Make them your staple food for in-between snacks and against cravings for sweets. And don't worry about eating too much: even though they contain lots of natural sugar, they have only about 90 calories per fruit.

How's that for great health benefits of bananas?


3. Low-Fat and High-Fiber

As mentioned above, this fruit contains lots of fiber, but little fat. This makes it a good choice for weight loss and for your digestion.

The high amount of fiber helps your digestion, may restore normal bowel action, and keeps you saturated for a long time. The weight loss comes from satiation your "sweet tooth" and preventing you on unhealthy junk foods or sweets.


4. Plenty of Vitamin B6

One fruit offers 20-30% of the daily recommended dose of B6. That's a lot!

Your body needs the vitamin B6 to regulate blood glucose levels, which can affect your mood. You could even try bananas against mood swings like PMS or baby blues.

The Vitamin B6 also helps in calming your nervous system and helping you to reduce stress.


5. Vitamin C for Your Immune System

When thinking of Vitamin C citrus fruits like oranges, grapefruits, etc. come to mind. But it's a little known fact that one single banana provides you with 15-20% of the recommended dose of Vitamin C.

How about this added health benefits of bananas? Still not convinced? Read on!


6. Soothes Heartburn and Ulcers

They have a natural antacid effect in the body, so if you suffer from heartburn, try eating a banana for soothing relief.And due to their soft texture and smoothness they have been used as dietary food against intestinal disorders.

They neutralizes over-acidity and reduce irritation by coating the lining of the stomach. Eating enough of this fruit might prevent or even cure ulcers. Of course this doesn't mean you shouldn't see a doctor when you have sever symptoms. But remember, prevention is better than cure, right?


7. Good for Pregnant Women and Little Kids

They have so many minerals and vitamins, there's no reason why you shouldn't eat them during pregnancy. What's more, bananas are said to have additional health benefits for pregnant women:

  • they may help against morning sickness (what a great remedy as you're not allowed to take any medication!)
  • they give you instant energy when needed (I know that I had these sudden blood sugar lows and a banana was the perfect food to eat)

Kids can start eating bananas (organic ones though!) at a very early age. They're soft enough even for young toddlers and you always have energy food on hand.

The best thing is, they're the perfect snack to take with you. Neatly wrapped in their peel, you can take store them in your purse and just take them out and eat whenever needed.

No dirty hands, no cutting or difficult peeling. I used to take bananas with me all the time, when my son was still a toddler.

Convinced? Try one of my delicious banana shakes to experience the health benefits of bananas!


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