Everyone loves bananas! The humble fruit is the perfect go-to snack at times when you’re craving something sweet. It’s a guilt-free dessert that has numerous health benefits. Tasty and healthy- how rare is that? Bananas are chock-full of nutrients and are undeniably among the most versatile kitchen ingredients. They are tasty, inexpensive, and easy to work with. Despite its popularity, not a lot of people know about the health benefits of bananas.
Bananas are a breakfast staple, and are widely used in smoothies, milkshakes, pancake recipes, and more! Besides, raw banana masala curry or raw banana sabzi are also commonly prepared in the Indian household. Since it is such a common ingredient in our kitchen, it is important to understand the nutrition in bananas and the benefits of eating bananas.
There’s more to bananas than just being a yummy snack. It is rich in various nutrients, and contains almost no fat. It’s always a good idea to keep yourself informed about the nutrients in your food so that you can make well-informed food choices. Here are some banana nutrition facts that you should check out!
A medium-sized banana (100 grams) contains about 89 calories and 22.8 grams of carbs. While green bananas contain up to 80 percent starch, the starch is converted into sugars as the banana ripens. The main reason why bananas are a breakfast staple is that it is a good source of carbs and provides quick energy. Bananas charge you up, which is why they make for a great pre-workout snack. Besides, bananas have a low to medium Glycaemic Index, which means that when consumed in moderation, they don’t increase blood sugar levels as much as other high-carb foods.
Bananas are a good source of fibers, known to encourage digestive health. One medium-sized banana contains about 2.6 grams of fiber. They contain a type of fiber called pectin. Pectin consumption is linked with regulating blood glucose levels. Meanwhile, green bananas contain resistant starch, which functions like fiber, and aids your gut health.
Bananas are rich in vitamins and minerals such as potassium, vitamin B6, and vitamin C. They also contain magnesium, copper and manganese. A single banana contains about 422 milligrams of potassium, which is 9 percent of RDI (Recommended Dietary Intake). Potassium can help control blood pressure in people with high BP levels. Bananas are also high in vitamin B6, and a single banana provides 33 percent of RDI.
A single banana contains approximately 1.1 grams of protein, which is very little when compared to your Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for protein every day. Bananas aren’t great sources of protein, so you might want to add other protein-rich foods to your diet along with bananas.
On average, a single banana contains 0.3 grams of fat, which is quite low! Feel free to add it to your meals, or have it as an in-between meal snack.
Growing up, you must have been advised at least once to include bananas in your diet. It wasn’t for no reason! Bananas help prevent many ailments and are a powerhouse of nutrients. Now that you know all about the nutrition in bananas, it’s time to look at the health benefits of bananas. Bananas help improve digestion, are good for your heart health, and are energy boosters! Read on to find out more about the benefits of bananas.
Bananas contain potassium and magnesium, and both these nutrients are crucial for your heart health. Besides, bananas are rich in dietary fibers, and a high fiber diet has been linked to a lower risk of cardiovascular diseases. That’s not all! Eating foods high in fiber is known to decrease your LDL cholesterol aka bad cholesterol.
Consuming foods that are rich in potassium and low in sodium helps in lowering blood pressure. Bananas fit this category, as they are high in potassium, and can help manage blood pressure, thereby reducing strain on the cardiovascular system.
This is one of the most important health benefits of bananas. As mentioned above, bananas work great as pre-workout fuel mainly because they boost your energy. Bananas are rich in carbs, and are also good sources of potassium, and vitamin B6- all of which aid in boosting your energy levels. It is also a great snack option for when you are feeling lethargic. Reach for a banana instead of a sugary snack to feel powered up!
Bananas contain 75% water, and are also rich in dietary fibers. Both of these components encourage digestive health. Besides, bananas also contain resistant starch, which may feed the beneficial bacteria in your gut, and may help protect against colon cancer. Apart from this, bananas are also often recommended to help counter acid reflux. The potassium present in them produces mucus in the lining of the stomach and decreases the pH levels.
Bananas contain antioxidants such as dopamine and catechins. These antioxidants are linked with a reduced risk of heart diseases. Besides, the antioxidants also serve as protection from free radicals that we come in contact with daily, eventually lowering the risk of certain diseases.
Green bananas contain resistant starch, which is a type of indigestible carb. Meanwhile, ripe bananas contain soluble fiber. Both of these components help keep you satiated and increase the feeling of fullness after you eat bananas.
Potassium is a vital nutrient that aids your body in retaining water better and maintaining a healthy electrolyte balance. Therefore, consuming bananas, which are naturally rich in potassium, helps you stay hydrated which in turn helps your kidneys function better. Also, potassium from bananas lowers the chances of kidney stones being formed as it lowers calcium levels in urine.
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Now that you know all about the nutrition in bananas and the health benefits of bananas, you have enough reason to include this yummy fruit in your diet!
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