Not only are bananas delicious, they are also extremely healthy as well. They contain several essential nutrients and are known to help digestion, encourage weight loss as well as promote a healthy heart. Scientists and nutritionists alike have long been promoting the incorporation of more bananas into our everyday diets. Compiled below are some of the top reasons you should start eating more bananas.
- Bananas contain several essential nutrients
Just one medium banana packs a nutrient punch. At only roughly 100 calories a piece, bananas also contain fiber and antioxidants in addition to all of the other nutrients. Here is a breakdown of some of the other essential nutrients found in just one banana:
- Fiber: 3g (12% DV)
- Protein: 1g (2% DV)
- Potassium: 422mg (12% DV)
- Magnesium: 32mg (8% DV)
- Phosphorus: 26mg (3% DV)
- Vitamin C: 10mg (17% DV)
- Riboflavin: 0.09mg (5% DV)
- Vitamin B-6: 0.43mg (22% DV)
*All DV values are based on a 2,000 calorie/day diet*
- Bananas improve digestive health
Because of the healthy amount of dietary fiber found in bananas, this superfood can benefit digestive health. Unripe bananas are rich in resistant starch fiber, which ends up in the large intestine and feeds the beneficial gut bacteria. Ripe bananas have fiber in the form of pectin which has been found to protect against colon cancer.
- Bananas could promote weight loss
At just 100 calories a piece, bananas are very nutritious and filling. Fiber is known to keep people fuller for longer, and the fiber found in fruits and vegetables in general is linked to a lower body weight as well as weight loss. Eating fiber can also help to reduce your appetite so you’re less likely to binge later.
- Bananas encourage heart health
Due to the high levels of potassium found in bananas, they are a great food to help your heart stay healthy. It has been found that potassium, already an essential nutrient for heart health, also helps control blood pressure. Diets rich in potassium can help to lower blood pressure. Studies have shown that those who consume plenty of potassium can have up a 27% reduced risk for heart disease. The magnesium found in bananas also is great for your heart.
- Bananas are great for exercise
Studies have shown that eating bananas after a workout can help reduce exercise-related muscle cramps as well as post-workout soreness. They are also a great source of fuel before exercise, due to the wide variety of nutrients found in them.
- Bananas are great for PMS
There have been several studies conducted about bananas and PMS related symptoms. It has been found that bananas can improve mood as well as help cramps. This is due to bananas blood-sugar regulating power and the amino acids that encourage a better mood.
- Bananas can help depression
Because of the amino acid called tryptophan found in bananas, they can be helpful in reducing the effects of depression. Tryptophan is converted into serotonin, which is a neurotransmitter related to happier moods.