Bananas are one of my favorite things to eat. They are nutritious and filling. They are definitely my favorite fruit.
I like banana sandwiches, banana pie, banana split, banana smoothies… you get the picture.
Generally, bananas are a great source of nutrition and regarded as an important part of most diets all over the world. They are part of the Musa family of plants and thought to have originated in Southeast Asia. Many types and sizes exist. Their color when ripe ranges from yellow to red.
Everything you need to know about banana vitamins and minerals
Bananas are rich in vitamins B6 and C and regarded as a good source of potassium.
This article will discuss everything you need to know about bananas, their health benefits, and some of the downsides.
Banana Nutrition Facts
The nutrition facts for 1 medium-sized 100 g banana:
- Calories: 89
- Water: 75%
- Protein: 1.1 grams
- Carbs: 22.8 grams
- Sugar: 12.2 grams
- Fiber: 2.6 grams
- Fat: 0.3 grams
(USDA Food Composition Database)
Nutrient amount in one medium banana and daily adult requirement
- Magnesium 3. 1 mg | 25.2–33.6 mg
- Phosphorus 26 mg |700 mg
- Potassium 422 mg |4,700 mg
- Selenium in micrograms (μg) 1.9 μg | 55 μg
- Choline 11.6 mg |425–550 mg
- Vitamin C 10.3 mg | 75–90mg
- Folate (Dietary folate equivalent) 23.6 μg | 400 μg
- Beta carotene 30.7 μ | No data
- Alpha-carotene 29.5 μg | No data
(2015–2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans)
- Choline is an essential nutrient that is naturally present in some foods and available as a dietary supplement.
- Choline is a source of methyl groups needed for many steps in metabolism.
- The body needs choline to synthesize phosphatidylcholine and sphingomyelin, two major phospholipids vital for cell membranes.
(Health Professional Fact Sheet)
- Plants get their nitrogen from the soil and not directly from the air. …
- The act of breaking apart the two atoms in a nitrogen molecule is called “nitrogen fixation”.
- Plants get the nitrogen that they need from the soil, where it has already been fixed by bacteria and archaea. Feb 21, 2014 (Science Questions With Surprising Answers, by Dr. Christopher S. Baird)
Nitrogen is about the only mineral with which farmers prepare crop soils.
Concerning the banana minerals mentioned above,
- Selenium in micrograms
it’s entirely pot luck. Even nitrogen must be absorbed from the ground. Those figures supplied by Dietary Guidelines for Americans are rough estimates at best, if the minerals are not in the ground they won’t be in the bananas. In fact, mineral content can vary from banana tree to banana tree.
The importance of minerals to health
It is important at this point to point out that every chemical reaction in the body pertaining to life requires a mineral catalyst to start, and a mineral co-factor to finish.
Without minerals, nothing good happens.
When it comes to sickness and disease, nutritional therapy should be standard medical procedure.30 nutritional remedies for common diseases
Selenium the most powerful antioxidant
Alpha and beta carotene, selenium, choline, and vitamin C all have antioxidant properties.
This means that bananas can make a good contribution toward preventing cancer.
The main mineral for cancer prevention is selenium, and contrary to the suggestion above, adults should be getting at least 100 μg per day.
I have been taking that much for years, and sometimes twice that amount without any ill effects.
A proportion of the starch in bananas is resistant starch, which passes through your gut undigested.
In your large intestine, this starch is fermented by bacteria to form butyrate, a short-chain fatty acid that appears to have beneficial effects on gut health (National Library of Medicine – USA).
- Resistant starch is a carbohydrate that resists digestion in the small intestine and ferments in the large intestine.
- As the fibers ferment they act as a prebiotic and feed the good bacteria in the gut.
- There are several types of resistant starch. They are classified by their structure or source.
- The starch in unripe bananas is converted into sugars as the banana ripens
- Sugars in ripe bananas are sucrose, fructose, and glucose.
- In ripe bananas, the total sugar content can reach more than 16% of the fresh weight.
- Bananas have a relatively low glycemic index (GI) of 42–58, depending on their ripeness.
- The GI is a measure of how quickly carbs in food enter your bloodstream and raise blood sugar.
- Bananas’ high content of resistant starch and fiber explains their low GI
Some suggest that bananas are not good for people with type 2 diabetes.
It’s true that bananas are high in starch and sugar. Thus, one might expect them to cause a large rise in blood sugar.
Although bananas do have a low GI, which means a moderate consumption of bananas should not raise blood sugar levels nearly as much as other high-carb foods, you should avoid them if your serious about getting rid of diabetes.
All fruit contains sugar. This sugar if not used immediately changes to fat and accumulates around organs with relatively little nearby muscle. That fat is the last to go when exercising, if at all. Limiting the amount of fruit one eats is prudent. Orange juice, for example, has just as much sugar as Coca-Cola.
Unless you have diabetes, bananas make a good part of your diet. In moderation, they are very good for you, especially before sport exercise or manual labor.
To learn more about maximizing your immune system head over to,What mineral supplements do you need?
I am fully aware that some of the things I have written go against the grain of prevailing medical opinion.
What are your thoughts on the matter? Feel free to tell me what’s what in the comment section below, or anything at all.