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Fit Food: Surprising Banana Nutrition Facts and Health Benefits

By Rob Poulos...

Whether in cereal, bread, or as a quick snack on-the-go, most people can’t turn down a ripe, sweet banana–and its health benefits are even sweeter.  Packed full of nutritious vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber, bananas can do a body good, helping you reach your calorie and micronutrient goals without any of the “bad” stuff (saturated fat and cholesterol anyone?).  If you need a quick way to sweeten up your diet, here’s why adding bananas are a good idea.

Banana’s Nutrition Facts: A Nutrition Powerhouse

Though it’s not the most low-calorie snack around, it may be the healthiest–a medium-sized banana contains just over 100 calories, with none of the calories coming from fat.  Most of its calories come from its fiber and naturally-occurring sugars, which give it a subtle, sweet bite that goes well with any meal.

Better yet, it’s a great way to get your day’s worth of potassium, an essential mineral.  It may seem like an unimportant mineral, but it’s powerful–without it, you couldn’t build muscle, have a healthy heart, or break down carbohydrates properly.  If you truly want to get lean and build muscle, eating potassium-rich foods, such as bananas, is the key to a leaner bod alongside a healthy nutrition plan.

Of course, there are also other important nutrients bananas provide–such as vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin B6, and dietary fiber.  These vitamins help you maintain a healthy immune system, as well as making sure your body is physiologically healthy.

These vitamins also have an additional benefit–they’re antioxidants.  To learn why they’re important, read on.

Banana’s Health Benefits: Could it Fight Cancer?

In order to have a healthy body, we need vitamins.  Some help us with our vision; others help with our immune system.  But they also serve another purpose–they’re antioxidants, molecules that prevent other molecules from oxidating.  Oxidation can create something called free radicals, which can damage cells.  While some types of free radical damage are necessary to survive, too much free radical damage can increase a person’s risk for many health problems–such as cancer, diabetes, stroke, and even a heart attack.  Research even suggests that people who eat a healthy diet that include fruits, such as bananas, are less likely to develop certain types of cancers.

Fiber, another important component of bananas, can also decrease your risk of a certain type of cancer, called colon cancer.  It also helps regulate your digestive system, reducing your risk for constipation and colitis–it’ll make your digestive tract healthy!  Fiber is also a key component for dieters because it can help people feel fuller faster, acting as a temporary appetite suppressant.  Pair this with the cancer-fighting abilities of bananas and it’s hard to deny it: This fruit could do a lot of good if you want to lose weight!

How to Enjoy Bananas

Most people enjoy bananas in their purest state: Raw, fresh, and eaten as a morning meal or snack.  Don’t fancy it raw?  Here are other ways to enjoy bananas:

–  Put it in a fruit smoothie.  Bananas blend easily and add creaminess to any smoothie or beverage.

–  Add it over cereal or toast.  Bananas are naturally sweet, so they’ll safely add a touch of sugar to any meal.

–  Make banana bread.  Bananas are a healthy addition to any homemade loaf of bread.

 

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8 Comments Add yours

  1. leena

    I hate to eat bananas. But this article is really informative and i found many benefits of banana that i didn’t know before.
    From today on wards i will try to eat bananas…
    But i wonder how many bananas do we have to eat each day?

  2. sheina

    it really had me on getting one, especially now that i need to eat fruits… i never like it before since whats being sold is the kind that i do not like, but this cavendish one had me on grabbing it to include on my breakfast table.

  3. Martha Frank

    For the last 25 years I have had a banana everyday and still eating them.

  4. Rick

    I have muscle cramps in calf muscle, heard that Bananas are a good way to relieve !

  5. kassahun

    I have been eating banana since last year and I absorbed some physical changes, good digestion
    and I am feeling healthy. I am asking you how many banana do we have to eat each day

  6. brinnin

    id say just eat as many as you want as long as you have at least 1 a day, due to the sugar you will learn what your limit is, but i can see eating 1 banana before each meal being the wisest option.

  7. Eve

    Yesterday, I had three bananas, and today I had two. I’m glad to know that bananas are good for your health and are packed with nutrients, but maybe I should cut down for sugars sake.

    But what can I say? I love bananas.

  8. tommy

    I eat 3 to 4 bananas per day, usually with peanut butter on bread -a nutritious, delicious combo.

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