- Food and Cooking
Banana nutritional value
What are the nutritional values of bananas?
Why would someone want to know nutritional values of bananas? Because the nutritional value of bananas is so high tenis players eat them all the time during their matches. Yes... from all the fruits, from all the food they have picked bananas. Read on to find out why!
Nutritional Value And Growing Of Bananas
Bananas are grown purposely because of their nutritional value and of course for commercial purposes. Long ago, the banana was considered a vital food that helped boost malnourished children's health. Doctors recommend bananas to patients who have low potassium. Before delving into more details, let's combine the nutritional values and see what makes the banana be ranged among the world healthiest and most nutritional fruits.
A banana of approximately 9 inches contains:
- only 140 calories,
- at least 602mg of potassium,
- 4 grams of fiber,
- 2 grams of sodium,
- 2 grams of protein,
- and 36 grams of carbs.
That same banana is not lacking in minerals and vitamins. It offers:
- 123 I.U of vitamin A
and is also occupied by B vitamins which contain:
- 15mg of Riboflavin,
- 88mg of vitamin B6,
- .07 mg of Thiamine,
- 82 mg of Niacin,
- 29mcg of Folic Acid.
Moreover, there is also:
- 13.8mg of Vitamin C.
- Calcium and Magnesium on the mineral side is also available in amounts of 9.2mg and 44.1 mg
You are sure to also find some trace amounts of zinc and iron in the banana.
Apart from eating bananas raw, there are plenty of things that you can bake using them. One of my favourites is banana bread. You can find a few link to different banana bread recipes a little lower in this lens.
Two Types Of Bananas
Note that there are two main types of bananas; the sweet banana (the fruit) and the plantain. The fruit is the one normally eaten raw and is yellowish in color. On the other hand, the plantain, also known as the meal, horse banana or the vegetable, is the banana that is normally cooked. Whereas the fruit banana is succulent on maturity with a creamy, smooth but firm pulp, the Plantains are low in water content therefore making them starchier and drier. Of importance to note also is that the plantains hold a slightly higher nutritional value in vitamins and minerals, but equals the sweet banana in fiber content and protein.
Where Do Bananas Come From?
Bananas are grown in many countries, although not all countries grow for export. In India, China, Thailand and Brazil, bananas are grown mainly as a local food while in Colombia, Honduras, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Panama, Philippines and Guatemala, it is grown for export.
The banana is a perennial herb, it dies back after a successful fruiting then produces new growth for next fruit generation. You will be surprised to learn there are over 300 species of bananas although only 20 types are cultivated for commercial purposes hence you can only enjoy the non-commercial variety as a tourist to the growing nations or as a local resident.
Bananas are normally harvested in the green state, this is because if they are left to ripen, they would perish too fast and if again harvested very early, they tend to develop a floury pulp that replaces the delightful sweet flavor. It will only take 9 months for the plant to start shooting flowers hence start producing bananas. At that juncture, the plant is approximately 15-40feet depending on the variety.
While growing, bananas appear to grow upside-down and really puzzle people who see it for the first time. However, it does not affect the productivity, neither does it compromise the agreeable taste of sweet bananas or the all rich cookery type of bananas.
Since bananas are quite dry and don't have much moisture it's not possible to make juice just using bananas. You have to add either:
- add some other fruit (pineapple works great!!)
- add some milk and make a milk shake
- add some water.
For more info on bananas also check: Five health benefits of bananas and Banana nutrition facts with all nutrients and their exact content.
What You Need For Making Banana Bread And Banana Juice
Health Benefits Of Bananas
With all the nutritional facts you of course ask yourself what health benefits do then bananas have. Well...they have quite a few. Here are six the most notable ones:
1. They are good for your heart because they contain lots of potassium. Potassium is essential substance for you heath heath.
2. They are full of vitamin B6 which helps your body make hemoglobin. This way they improve the quality off your blood.
3. They help you with diarrhea. Bananas are known food to eat when you want a harder stool.
4. Bananas contain 16% of the daily recommended dietary fiber which helps you with digestion, prevents colon cancer and is good for your digestion in general.
Best Way To Eat Bananas
What is the best way to eat bananas?
Going bananas on YouTube
This is a short video that will give you some idea how to cook with bananas.