The Surprising Benefits of Eating Bananas

March 17, 2018 Blog, Nutrition Woman buying a banana at a farmers market

You’re running late. You’ve been busy all morning and need to get out the door. With a blurry mind and a rumbling tummy you reach for whatever you can find – a bright yellow banana – and off you go.

Little do you know, this seemingly simple, spur of the moment food choice will give you more than just the opportunity to suppress those hunger pains building inside. The choice to eat a banana will actually have a far greater impact, not only on your body and your mind but on the outcome of your day and perhaps even your future.

Bananas At a Glance – Why Are They So Good?

No matter what size, bananas are a nutritious source of energy. A medium-sized banana contains roughly 100 calories which is ideal for topping off your system when you need an extra little push to get you going.

Mostly made of water and carbohydrates, with close to zero fat, your average banana comes in at approximately 50 on the Glycemic Index (GI) – exactly the halfway point on the GI spectrum. This means eating a banana won’t create a super quick spike your energy levels and then drop you quickly in a state of fatigue.

This healthy fruit will provide your body with fuel fairly fast with a balance of nutrients while helping you to sustain your energy levels.

Tasty peeled banana

Take A Closer Look – Bananas Are a Goldmine of Nutrition

So what lies beneath that golden outer skin? From macro to micronutrients, including essential vitamins and minerals, bananas are packed with the good stuff you need to help your body thrive.

For a 100g banana, you’ll be getting roughly 0.3 gm fat, 0 gm cholesterol, 1 mg salt, approx 360 mg potassium, 2.6 gm fiber, 12 gm sugar and 1.1 gm protein.

Packing 9% of your recommended daily Potassium needs, bananas are an extremely accessible source of this essential mineral. Also offering 8% and 14% of the recommended daily intake of Magnesium and Manganese respectively, and 11% of your Vitamin C needs, it’s easy to see why bananas are the go-to fruit for boosting your health.

Potassium

Potassium is essential to support your heart and brain health. It works to regulate your heartbeat, keep your blood pressure in a healthy range and keep your brain alert.

Upping the amount of this amazing mineral in your diet is a great way to reduce your risk of all types of strokes. People who consume at least the recommended daily intake of Potassium have a 27% lower chance of heart-related diseases.

Potassium’s partner in crime, Magnesium, assists Potassium in enhancing the state of your major organs. These two minerals, found in large quantities in bananas, work together to prolong your life and keep you healthy along the way.

Bananas in a healthy bowl of cereal

Fiber

Bananas are high in fiber, and the best part is, they provide you with a healthy dose of both soluble and insoluble forms. This little yellow fruit is a warrior in combating the digestive issues that lead to health problems throughout your body.

Consuming the right types and amounts of fiber will help keep your digestive system working effectively. This is good news for weight conscious people, as the optimal function of your digestive system also ensures your metabolism keeps running smoothly.

Bananas can be a secret weapon for those wanting to lose weight. The fiber they provide works to regulate your gut and assist with the body’s natural detox processes. Plus, the fiber found in Bananas also keeps you feeling full for longer periods of time, making this fruit a great way to satiate your hunger and keep your appetite in check!

Hiker holding a banana

Antioxidants

Jam-packed with antioxidants, bananas are your go-to fruit if you’re looking to boost the amount of cellular bodyguards in your bloodstream. Antioxidants are molecules that help protect your cells from damage (the cause of degenerative diseases). These molecules are a necessity if you want to keep your body healthy and fighting fit.

A standout antioxidant present in bananas is Dopamine. Dopamine governs the rewards system in our brain. It makes us feel good, and it helps us determine our actions like physical movement and speech. By making bananas a staple part of your diet you will help provide your body with enough of this beneficial antioxidant to help keep your brain happy and healthy!

An easy addition to your routine to improve your health

The best thing about bananas is they are such an easy addition to our lives! Coming in their own convenient little package, they are an excellent choice to provide your body with the nutrition you need with minimal on your part!

Even those who have to keep a close eye on their diet can benefit from bananas. In fact, diabetics can consume under-ripe bananas to get a big hit of resistant starch. This form of starch is an extremely helpful form of soluble fiber that helps people suffering from diabetes control their blood sugar easily.

How could you say no to a banana? Apart from being a super easy and convenient food that you can grab without a second thought, the fact that bananas are power packed with nutrients that support both our body and mind is a major bonus! Add them to diet and enjoy having more energy, a clearer mind, and a healthier body…It’s time to go bananas!

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