Health Benefits of Bananas: General Information, Related Research, Health Supportive Nutrition

Health Benefits of Bananas

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The below provides a general overview on this topic and may not apply to everyone. Any treatment protocol should be discussed with a qualified healthcare practitioner ... Please refer to: Medical & Legal Disclaimer.

Food RemediesThe banana is a natural remedy for many health concerns.

When you compare it to an apple, it has four times the protein, twice the carbohydrate, three times the phosphorus, five times the vitamin A and iron, and twice the other vitamins and minerals. It is also rich in potassium and is one of the best value foods around.

Refrigerating Bananas or NOT?

Bananas lose their pleasant taste when they are refrigerated. They dry out. It doesn’t diminish their nutritional value – and it most certainly makes them last longer. It’s just changes the taste.

Some people FREEZE them and enjoy them as healthy popsicles. Alternatively, our favorite ice-cream recipe is simple and everyone is AMAZED that all they are eating is bananas -- no fat, no sugar, nothing at all but bananas or maybe some berries added for extra nutritrion and taste.

The recipe is so simple. I first learned about it at a raw food preparation class that was teaching participants to eat healthier.

  • Cut bananas into slices and freeze for a day or until you are ready
  • Place frozen bananas into a blender

And THAT"s IT! You can add some berries for extra nutrition. Nobody will believe you that this is NOT a delicious commercial icecream. It's creamy and sweet and incredibly healthy and could easily be served at the fanciest dinner event without anybody being any wiser!)

Natural Energy Boosters:

Bananas contain sucrose, fructose and glucose, which give an instant, sustained and substantial boost of energy. In fact, two bananas provide enough energy for a strenuous 90-minute workout. Bananas are, therefore, popular with the world's leading athletes.

Health Benefits of the Banana:

Anemia: High in iron, bananas can stimulate the production of hemoglobin in the blood and so helps in cases of anemia.

Blood Pressure: This unique tropical fruit is extremely high in potassium yet low in salt, making it perfect to beat blood pressure. So much so, the US Food and Drug Administration has just allowed the banana industry to make official claims for the fruit's ability to reduce the risk of blood pressure and stroke.

Bone Health: Bananas can help improve your body's ability to absorb calcium.

Brain Power: 200 students at a Twickenham (Middlesex) school were helped through their exams this year by eating bananas at breakfast, break, and lunch in a bid to boost their brain power. Research has shown that the potassium-packed fruit can assist learning by making pupils more alert. 

Cancer & Health Immune System: According to a Japanese scientific study, bananas contain TNF which has anti-cancer properties. The degree of anti-cancer effect corresponds to the degree of ripeness of the fruit. Specifically, the riper the banana, the higher the anti-cancer properties. In an animal experiment carried out in Tokyo which compared the various health benefits of different fruits, including bananas, grapes, apples, water melons, pineapples, pears and persimmons, it was found that bananas gave the best results. It increased the number of white blood cells, enhanced the immunity of the body and produced the anti-cancer substance TNF. The recommendation is to eat 1 to 2 banana a day to increase your body immunity to diseases like cold, flu and others. Yellow skin bananas with dark spots on them, are 8 times more effective in enhancing the property of white blood cells than the green-skin versions.

Constipation: High in fiber, including bananas in the diet can help restore normal bowel action, helping to overcome the problem without resorting to laxatives.

Depression: According to a recent survey undertaken by MIND amongst people suffering from depression, many felt much better after eating a banana. This is because bananas contain tryptophan, a type of protein that the body converts into serotonin, known to make you relax, improve your mood and generally make you feel happier.

Hangovers: One of the quickest ways of curing a hangover is to make a banana milkshake, sweetened with honey. The banana calms the stomach and, with the help of the honey, builds up depleted blood sugar levels, while the milk soothes and re-hydrates your system.

Heartburn: Bananas have a natural antacid effect in the body, so if you suffer from heartburn, try eating a banana for soothing relief.

Morning Sickness: Snacking on bananas between meals helps to keep blood sugar levels up and avoid morning sickness

Mosquito bites: Before reaching for the insect bite cream, try rubbing the affected area with the inside of a banana skin. Many people find it amazingly successful at reducing swelling and irritation.

Nerves: Bananas are high in B vitamins that help calm the nervous system.

Overweight and at work? Studies at the Institute of Psychology in Austria found pressure at wor k leads to gorging on comfort food like chocolate and crisps. Looking at 5,000 hospital patients, researchers found the most obese were more likely to be in high-pressure jobs. The report concluded that, to avoid panic-induced food cravings, we need to control our blood sugar levels by snacking on high carbohydrate foods every two hours to keep levels steady.

PMS: The vitamin B6 it contains regulates blood glucose levels, which can affect your mood.

Ulcers: The banana is used as the dietary food against intestinal disorders because of its soft texture and smoothness. It is the only raw fruit that can be eaten without distress in over-chronicler cases. It also neutralizes over-acidity and reduces irritation by coating the lining of the stomach.

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD): Bananas can help SAD sufferers because they contain the natural mood enhancer tryptophan, as can exposure to natural sunlight.

Smoking & Tobacco Use: Bananas can also help people trying to give up smoking. The B6, B12 they contain, as well as the potassium and magnesium found in them, help the body recover from the effects of nicotine withdrawal. (For tips to stop smoking, please click here.)

Stress: Potassium is a vital mineral, which helps normalize the heartbeat, sends oxygen to the brain and regulates your body's water balance When we are stressed, our metabolic rate rises, thereby reducing our potassium levels. These can be rebalanced with the help of a high-potassium banana snack.

Strokes: According to research in The New England Journal of Medicine, eating bananas as part of a regular diet can cut the risk of death by strokes by as much as 40%!

Temperature control: Many other cultures see bananas as a "cooling" fruit that can lower both the physical and emotional temperature of expectant mothers. In Thailand , for example, pregnant women eat bananas to ensure their baby is born with a cool temperature.  

Warts: Those keen on natural alternatives swear that if you want to kill off a wart, take a piece of banana skin and place it on the wart, with the yellow side out. Carefully hold the skin in place with a plaster or surgical tape!

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