Bananas are the best. I’ve actually witnessed first-hand the healing powers of bananas in bringing a young boy back to life! Ok, well maybe I saw that in Honey, I Shrunk the Kids, but the potassium-packed fruit saved the day and brought the boy back to consciousness.
It turns out that bananas offer much more than potassium. There are so many health benefits from the nutrient-rich fruit, but also many other uses for everyday life. Here’s what you’ll find in a banana:
- Vitamin B6 – .5 mg
- Manganese – .3 mg
- Vitamin C – 9 mg
- Potassium – 450 mg
- Dietary Fiber – 3g
- Protein – 1 g
- Magnesium – 34 mg
- Folate – 25.0 mcg
- Riboflavin – .1 mg
- Niacin – .8 mg
- Vitamin A – 81 IU
- Iron – .3 mg
(Source: Medical News)
I personally love bananas for their quick energy fix, mood-boosting qualities, and their ability to help with muscle and PMS cramps. But there are so many other health benefits of bananas. Some of these include:
- Sustains blood sugar and boost energy, making bananas a great pre-workout snack (I recommend eating two bananas before your workout). This also aids with PMS cramps and stress and makes you more alert.
- High levels of tryptophan raise serotonin levels and reduce depression.
- Aids in weight loss, swelling reduction, prevention of type II diabetes, strengthens the nervous system, and increases levels of white blood cells due to high levels of Vitamin B-6. These high levels of Vitamin B-6, along with magnesium and potassium, also help smokers trying to quit by curbing withdrawal!
- Helps with anemia and strengthens blood due to iron levels.
- Low in salt, helping to lower blood pressure and protect against strokes and heart attacks.
- High in calcium, helping with strong bones.
- Acts as a prebiotic, aiding in constipation, bloating and diarrhea.
- Aids in heartburn, ulcer prevention, acid reflux, and GERD.
- Helps prevent kidney cancer.
- Lowers body temperature on a hot day.
(Source: Food Matters)
These are just the health benefits of bananas. Now it’s time to learn about the fun, everyday uses for bananas:
- Use the peel to shine your leather shoes. It really works!
- Remove a wart by taping the inside of the banana over your wart.
- Treat your bug bites with the peel.
- Press the banana peel over cuts or bruises.
- Rub a banana peel over your teeth for approximately two minutes to help whiten teeth.
- Use a banana to get out splinters. The banana’s enzymes will naturally help get out the sucker when you press the peel over it.
- Stop itchy scalp and moisturize hair and skin.
- Stop oily skin when you make a mask out of the banana. This mask will also help fight wrinkles.
- Fight acne. Wipe the inside of the peel on your blemishes and leave on over night. Wash off in the morning.
- Brighten house plants by rubbing the peel on leaves for extra shine.
- In Asian cultures it’s common to place a ripe banana peel over a cooking piece of chicken to retain moisture while the chicken cooks.
- Use as fertilizer.
- Fight off aphids in your garden by burring dried or cut up banana peels a couple inches beneath aphid-prone plants.
Here are some yummy ways to eat your bananas:
Morning oatmeal with cut up banana (great for weight loss– avoid instant oatmeal which is full of sugar)
Healthy Banana Pancakes