Health Benefits of Bananas - Nature's Perfect Food & Medicine
Musa Acuminata

A banana (with milk) constitutes almost a complete balanced diet with potassium, vitamins and fiber.

The banana is the most versatile of all fruits: it is an ideal finger food for young children, it is easily digested, rarely causes allergies and contains natural sugars (sucrose, fructose and glucose) which are released quickly into the bloodstream, giving instant energy.

The banana contains a high-grade protein, which includes three of the essential amino acids. Banana and milk supplement each other in an ideal manner and provide all the needed nutrients to the body.

An electrolyte is a substance that, when dissolved in water, gives a solution that can conduct electricity. In your body, these are most often dissolved salts that contain sodium and potassium ions. Electrolytes are also called ionic solutes.

The concentration of dissolved salts (electrolytes) in your blood affects all of your bodily functions. Electrolytes are responsible for maintaining many functions in the human body, including normal muscle contraction, blood pressure, nerve conduction, heart rate and gastrointestinal motility. They also play an important role in energy metabolism.

Bananas are famous for containing potassium, an essential electrolyte that helps regulate blood chemistry (particularly Ph) and improves carbohydrate metabolism by helping the muscles act efficiently. Without potassium (and sodium) your muscles stop firing correctly. Severe loss of sodium can produce really nasty complications all the way up to shock and death. Potassium also prevents the blood's Ph from becoming too acidic. Bananas are also rich in vitamin B6, which helps metabolize more than 60 proteins and assists in red blood cell production that transports oxygen to muscles and folate in bananas helps concentration and memory.

Bananas give you 17% of your Daily Value of Vitamin C, an antioxidant that neutralizes free radicals (harmful waste products) in your body and helps produce collagen, the building block of the connective tissues such as tendons and cartilage that keep your knees strong. And the banana's magnesium plays a role in energy transport and is involved in the synthesis of protein, which helps you recover from fatigue.

Getting plenty of fiber in your diet is important for good health. Fiber has important benefits including reducing cholesterol, improving blood sugar control, and lowering risk of heart disease. It has a positive effect on the digestive system by helping to maintain regularity and reduce risk of diverticulitis and hernias.

Bananas, like most fiber, tend to help both diarrhea and constipation. Some people cannot take fiber supplements every day for more than a few weeks, but anyone can eat several bananas a day for many years with no problem. Two bananas a day (or one with every large meal) offers optimal GI effect (a slippery, soft stool with no mess). What you spend on bananas you will save on toilet paper.

Banana Facts:

  • There are more than 300 varieties of bananas bred for cultivation

  • The annual global banana output is 86 million tons

  • Bananas are the fourth most important staple food in the developing world

  • The average American eats 25 lbs. of bananas a year

  • Bananas originated in Malaysia

  • India remains the top producer of bananas in the world, growing approximately 20 percent of the world's bananas. Latin American countries such as Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Costa Rica and Mexico are the second largest producers of bananas, and the main exporters to the United States. In South East Asia, the top banana producers include Thailand, Indonesia, Philippines and Malaysia.

Here are different ways to eat your Banana:

  • Breakfast:
    o Add sliced bananas to cold cereal; make banana pancakes or banana muffins; make a banana and yogurt shake; add bananas to a bowl of mixed fruit; mix with low fat yogurt.

  • Lunch:
    o Eat a banana with your lunch; add sliced bananas to a fruit salad; make a banana and peanut butter sandwich.

  • Snack:
    o Eat a banana! Make a smoothie with a banana and Life Source Green Drink.

  • Dessert:
    o Top low fat yogurt or low fat ice cream with sliced bananas; make a low fat banana milk shake.

Banana Recipes

Banana Nut Bread, Banana Pudding, Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins, Banana Spice Cake, Banana Oatmeal Cookies, Banana Fritters, Plantain Chips

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