8 health benefits of bananas

Despite being known as an enemy of diets, bananas can be included in a healthy diet, even for those who want to lose weight. Because it is rich in carbohydrates, one of the main benefits of this fruit is to give energy, but it can also be used to increase the feeling of satiety and well-being, as it is rich in tryptophan, an important compound to improve mood.

An average unit of silver banana has about 40 kcal, and you should consume it once a day so as not to put on weight and at the same time obtain its benefits. An important tip is to know that the ripe banana does not cause constipation, while the greener banana helps to hold the intestine and can even be used to help fight diarrhea. See how to do and when to use Green Banana Biomass .

Thus, its main benefits are:

  1. Regulate the intestine , having to consume very ripe bananas in cases of constipation and greener bananas in cases of diarrhea;
  2. Decrease appetite, as it increases satiety and is rich in fiber;
  3. Avoid muscle cramps , as it is rich in potassium and magnesium;
  4. Reduces blood pressure, as it is rich in magnesium, which helps to relax blood vessels;
  5. Improve mood and help fight depression , as it contains tryptophan, an amino acid that participates in the formation of hormones that improve mood and help you relax;
  6. Strengthen the immune system and prevent disease, as it is rich in vitamin C;
  7. Improve cholesterol and carbohydrate metabolism , as it is rich in manganese;
  8. Help control cholesterol and prevent intestinal cancer , as it contains soluble fibers.

An important tip is to consume the least ripe banana in cases of diabetes, as it will be less sweet and will not increase blood glucose, which is the blood sugar content.

How to eat bananas without getting fat

In order to consume bananas without gaining weight, it is important to mix them with foods that are sources of protein or good fats, such as the following combinations:

  • Banana with peanuts, chestnuts or peanut butter, which are sources of good fat and B vitamins;
  • Banana mashed with oats, as oats are rich in fibers that help control the effect of banana sugar;
  • Banana beaten with a slice of cheese, as the cheese is rich in protein and fat;
  • Banana dessert for main meals, because when eating a good amount of salad and meat, chicken or fish, the banana’s carbohydrates will not stimulate the production of body fat.

In addition, other tips are to eat bananas in the pre or post-workout and choose small and not too ripe bananas, as they will not be rich in sugar.

Banana types

There are 5 varieties of banana that are the best known in Brazil:

  • Plantains:  being a good choice for cooking, baking or frying. Each 100 g has 128 kcal.
  • Banana-silver: it  is the richest in vitamin C, being ideal for frying and making vitamins. Each 100 g has 98 kcal.
  • Banana-apple: it  has a soft flesh and is easy to digest, with a tendency to leave the intestine stuck. Each 100 g has 87 kcal.
  • Banana-nanica:  has a mild laxative effect. Each 100 g has about 92 kcal.
  • Gold banana: it  has a sweet flavor and pleasant aroma. Each 100 g has 112 kcal.

The banana can be found in all seasons and is an ingredient that makes up a wide variety of sweet and savory dishes, as shown in the following recipes.

Banana Nutritional Information

The following table provides nutritional information for 100 g of three types of bananas.

ComponentsSilver bananaBanana nanicaPlantain
Energy98 kcal92 kcal128 kcal
Protein1,3 g1,4 g1,4 g
Fat0,1 g0,1 g0,2 g
Carbohydrates26 g23,8 g33,7 g
Fibers2,0 g1,9 g1,5 g
Vitamin B10,03 mg
Vitamin B20,02 mg0,02 mg0,02 mg
C vitamin21,6 mg5,9 mg15,7 mg
Pyridoxine0,1 mg0,14 mg0,14 mg
Potassium358 mg376 mg328 mg
Magnesium26 mg28 mg24 mg

The banana peel has twice as much potassium and is less caloric than the fruit itself, and can also be used in recipes such as cake and brigadeiro.

Sugar-free banana fit cake recipe

This cake is a great option to be used in healthy snacks, and can also be consumed in small quantities by people with diabetes.

Ingredients:

  • 3 medium ripe bananas
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup rolled oats or oat bran
  • 1/2 cup raisins or dates
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1 shallow tablespoon of yeast 

Preparation method:

Beat everything in a blender, pour the dough over a greased pan and place in a preheated medium oven for 30 minutes or until the toothpick comes out dry, indicating that the cake is ready

Banana Vitamin Recipe

This vitamin can be used as a great pre-workout as it is rich in energy and carbohydrates that will keep you going throughout your physical activity.

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium banana
  • 2 tablespoons of oats
  • 1 tablespoon peanut butter
  • 200 ml cold milk

Preparation method:

Beat all the ingredients in a blender and drink immediately.

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