What lies underneath that bright yellow peel? An abundance of nutrients your body needs to stay healthy and functioning at its best!
Turns out, the humble banana is more important for your health than you may have realized, so take a lesson from those energetic apes. Here’s why.
Are you getting enough vitamin C, magnesium, potassium and fiber? You won’t have to worry about it any longer by just eating a banana a day. The yellow fruit is loaded with the essential minerals you require to function daily. And there are so many more benefits that the jungle fruit has to offer.
Whether you pair bananas with peanut butter (the king of rock and roll’s favorite!), slice some up in your cereal or have them solo, you’re doing wonders for your overall health.
Benefits underneath the peel
It seems like there isn’t something that a banana can’t do or help with, from digestion to heart health, to even boosting your mood, the list is almost endless. Here are some benefits that will make you run out and grab a bundle at your local grocer.
Keep your heart happy
Bananas contain all the nutrients you need in order to support your heart. Fiber, potassium, vitamin C and B6 are all known to keep the heart healthy and strong, and can all be found in a banana.
A December 2013 study published in Today’s Dietitian examined potassium’s role in reducing death by ischemic heart disease. Participants of the study who consumed 4,069 mg of potassium (the amount found in about nine bananas) had a significant 49 percent lower risk of death by ischemic heart disease compared to the participant group who only had 1,000 mg.
Potassium has also been linked to reducing risks of stroke, preserving muscle mass and bone density, and the reduction in the formation of kidney stones.
Whether you can’t go, or go way too often – I’m talking bowel movements – bananas can help you in either case. Its fiber content is helpful for those who are constipated by helping to normalize bowel motility. On the reverse, bananas can help restore lost electrolytes from diarrhea and sooth the digestive tract. Eating a banana daily will also help promote bowel regularity.
Other benefits for your digestion? Bananas are a prebiotic which promotes growth of good bacteria within the digestion tract. They also aid in the absorption of nutrients by producing digestive enzymes.
Boost your mood
Stressed, anxious or just grumpy, bananas have a positive effect on your mood. Bananas contain the natural mood enhancer tryptophan, which is an essential amino acid that your body does not naturally create but must be taken in through diet. Tryptophan helps create serotonin, the feel-good hormone known to give you a good night’s rest as well as stabilize your mood.
Potassium, which helps regulate the heartbeat, is also useful in calming feelings of stress; stress reduces the body’s potassium level. B6 from banana combats feelings of irritability as it regulates blood sugar levels. Studies have noted that a drop in glucose levels can put you on edge and cause bursts of anger.
Bananas are also high in antioxidants. They can prevent muscle cramps caused by exercise or that occur during sleep, and help with anemia, thanks to the iron found in them.
No matter the ailment, it seems that a banana is the way to go for essential nutrients your body needs. They’re easy to transport, don’t leave much of a mess and will keep you energized, uplifted and powering through your busy days.
Next time you head out for a walk or reach for your car keys to leave the house, grab a banana first for overall health benefits.