A staple in every household fruit bowl or tennis player’s sports bag is the humble banana. Ok, the general population understands that bananas are healthy for you, quick and easy to eat, and versatile in breakfast or snacks. However, the health benefits of eating a banana a day cannot go unnoticed. Your immune system improves, and you reduce the risk of disease and indigestion problems. Plus bananas fill you up and give you more energy than before. What's not to love? Here are the best facts you never knew about how good bananas are for you.
Potassium: one of the critical minerals not naturally created by the body, but exactly what your body needs to function well. So where do we get it? Food. One of the highest sources of potassium is bananas. Eating just 1 -2 bananas a day can maintain proper heart function, offsetting the effect sodium and salt have in raising your blood pressure. This notion lowers your risk of heart disease and stroke. The potassium in bananas even prevents kidney stones. Suppressing calcium excretion in your urine prevents stones from forming and means there is more calcium available to preserve your bones.
Bananas have a natural balance of sugars and soluble fiber. This concept gives a slow but stable energy release to the body, which is why athletes often eat bananas before working out. Think of it as a natural alternative to an energy bar or sports drink. This principle of an energy boost isn't just for athletes and people working out, however. You can use it when the 3 pm slump comes along. Eating a banana instead of a chocolate bar or other junk food helps maintain a healthy lifestyle. Plus, the natural sweetness of a banana can satisfy your sweet tooth.
What is the primary food source that in your diet that will help digestion? Fiber. Fiber improves the flow of food through the digestive tract and promotes healthy bowel movements. Bananas are a considerable source of dietary fiber as they are abundant in prebiotic oligosaccharides, which is food for the good bacteria in your digestive tract. This system helps absorb nutrients in the body more efficiently. So, bananas help with bowel movements. This factor means it is also a natural alternative to help with occasional constipation. Instead of taking a laxative, try bananas!
Vitamin B6 helps maintain correct blood sugar levels, helps create hemoglobin for healthy blood, and breaks down amino acids in the body. B6 helps your body produce more antibodies for a stronger, more robust, more reliable immune response. A healthy immune system means less chance of becoming ill. Eating a banana a day as a yummy snack is an excellent alternative to getting your daily intake of vitamin B6 in supplement form. It tastes better too, and will fill you up!
Balancing your stomach's pH levels is essential in combating heartburn. Bananas do this by enhancing the protective mucus layer, which relieves pain and helps food to move faster through the digestive tract. Eating bananas can prevent acid reflux. As far as stomach ulcers are concerned, the protective mucus layer in the stomach you are building up by eating bananas works as a barrier against hydrochloric acid. They also help eliminate bacteria in the stomach, which can lead to ulcers.
Studies show that a diet rich in fruits and vegetables is the best way to lower the risk of multiple diseases. Bananas, in particular, have undergone some research, which found that they could increase the white blood cell count. The study showed that entirely ripe bananas, the kind with black spots and a softer flesh, contain a compound called TNF-a. This cytokine (massive cell movement) increased the white blood cell number and enhanced immunity. Therefore, it can combat any dangerous cell changes. We need more research into the link between bananas and white cell development, but current studies show why bananas can be so good for you.
Serotonin in the body works as a neurotransmitter, acting to maintain mood balance. Healthy serotonin levels reduce stress, enhance a general outlook on life, and help regulate sleep patterns. Bananas have levels of the amino acid called tryptophan, and the human body converts tryptophan to serotonin. The level of tryptophan in bananas is not as high as some of the other vitamins and minerals. However, eating bananas is the easiest way to get tryptophan into your body. So, feeling stressed? Eat a banana.
The benefits of bananas extend beyond their flesh. You can also use the healing qualities of banana peels to help with your skin issues. Those dealing with acne or psoriasis can rub the inside of the banana peel over the affected area. The fat content of the peel will be absorbed into your skin and can also have a moisturizing effect. Results may vary depending on the severity of the skin problem and the length of banana peel use, so please perform a patch test first to see if it works for you.
An antioxidant is a molecule that prevents damage to your body. It inhibits the oxidation of other harmful molecules. Bananas are an excellent source of several natural antioxidants, Specifically dopamine and catechins. These antioxidants can reduce the risk of degenerative diseases and heart disease. In fact, most fruits and vegetables are an excellent source of dietary antioxidants, but bananas are high on the list. Eating a banana a day can only benefit your health, in more ways than one.
In addition to the fiber, vitamin B6, and potassium you receive when consuming bananas, they are also full of many other vitamins and minerals that our bodies need to function well. One medium banana contains the recommended daily intake of magnesium, copper, vitamin C, manganese and good carbohydrates. On the smaller scale, they also contain traces of iron, zinc, iodine, and selenium. With only .4 grams of fat and around 215 calories in each medium banana, this makes them practically the perfect snack to fill you up and keep you healthy.
This site offers information designed for educational purposes only. You should not rely on any information on this site as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or as a substitute for, professional counseling care, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a physician or other healthcare professional.