Banana is one of my favorite fruits, and I don’t need to be convinced why I should eat them, but for all the others there are 7 good reasons why you should eat this healthy fruit and you only need to eat as little as two bananas a day to maximize their health benefits.
Health Benefits of Bananas:
1. Banana is the best sources of potassium, an essential mineral for maintaining normal blood pressure, heart health and bone strength. One banana contains 450 mg of potassium, four times higher than cereal, bread and more. Eating two bananas a day will contribute to the prevention of hypertension, atherosclerosis and building our bones. Bananas also reduce the risk of stroke.
2. Bananas are low in sodium, and contain one mg per unit. Much of our daily diet sources, such as cereals, crackers and bread contain hundreds of milligrams of sodium. Reduction in sodium consumption is important in preventing high blood pressure, heart disease and blood vessels and loss of calcium from the bones.
3. Bananas contain prebiotic fiber that contributes to the digestive system. This helps to prevent diarrhea resulting from infection in the intestine, strengthen the immune system, protects against colon cancer and more. Prebiotic fibers also contribute to increased mineral absorption from the intestine, reducing cholesterol absorption and balance sugar levels.
4. A Swedish study showed that whole fruits and vegetables, especially bananas, help protect against kidney cancer. It was found that women who consumed more vegetables and fruits, decreased their risk of the disease, and those who consumed four to six bananas per week reduced the risk of kidney cancer by about half.
5. Bananas contain substances that help operate the cells that make up the lining of the stomach, and thus they form the protective mucous barrier against acidity. Other compounds in bananas called protease inhibitors, help destroy bacteria that causes stomach ulcers.
6. The high potassium content of bananas helps improve the health condition after consuming much alcohol, and helps prevent the feeling of a hangover.
7. Banana contains tryptophan, an amino acid that makes serotonin, an active ingredient in the nervous system. Among other functions, it regulates sleep and appetite and aids in creating a sense of relaxation. Therefore it is recommended to eat banana with the slight appearance of hunger during the day. Read also my article about the best foods to get better sleep.
Eating a banana a day is also one of the 70 habits featured in my e-book 70 Powerful Habits For A Great Health which will guide you how to take positive steps to improve your wellness and overall health.
James Achanyi-Fontem, is a Senior Health Journalist and Communication Consultant. He worked as a health journalist and broadcaster for 30 years with Radio Cameroon and later Cameroon Radio Television, CRTV before retiring in 2005 to engage fully with Cameroon Link (Human Assistance Programme). Cameroon Link is a registered charity, not-for-profit organisation involved in the promotion of community health, humanitarian assistance, promotion of women and child rights through involvement of communities in Cameroon for mother and child health care. Cameroon Link is a partner to Commonwealth of Learning (COL), Farm Radio International (FRI), International Baby Food Action Network (IBFAN Africa), World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA). As the intermediary of Commonwealth of Learning (COL), Cameroon Link is engaged to implement a Cameroon Rural Radio story design Programming through an investigative research, which aims to discover through interviewing beneficiaries of health programmes on their interests, documenting and disseminating new ideas about how radio stations produce and air Healthy Communities Radio Programs in Cameroon.