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The list of banana health benefits is too long to cover in just one article — but here are the top 6 that keep me reaching for bananas day after day.
As a fruit, a banana is incredibly convenient to pack in a lunch, travel with, and eat while you’re on the run.
When you discover everything that bananas have to offer, you might want to run out and get a bunch!
Here are the 6 reasons I try to eat a banana every day…
By the way, here’s how to peel and eat a banana the right way (… I bet you’ve been doing it wrong. I was!)
Reasons To Eat Bananas
Here are just a few banana health benefits — reasons you should start making bananas part of your daily diet:
#1 – Bananas are a good source of energy.
Bananas contain potassium — which helps with the production of energy. Bananas are also a source of the sugars glucose, fructose, and sucrose. Glucose and fructose are are absorbed into the blood rather quickly — which will give you quick energy. Therefore, you should eat a banana or two before a workout if you want a quick boost of energy.
#2 – Bananas can improve your mood.
Bananas contain tryptophan — which is converted into serotonin (a brain neurotransmitter that improves your mood and reduces mood changes, depression, and anxiety). Eating bananas will help you to feel confident and relaxed.
#3 – Bananas improve your vision.
Bananas contain enough Vitamin A to help protect your eyes. Specifically, Vitamin A maintains good vision and improves night vision. Vitamin A also contains compounds that preserve the membranes around your eyes and help to prevent macular degeneration.
#4 – Bananas are rich in antioxidants.
Antioxidants prevent the oxidation of cells — which can help prevent diseases such as cancer and also fight the signs of aging. Antioxidants also protect your heart against heart disease and your brain against dementia.
#5 – Bananas contain fiber.
A 6-inch banana has approximately 2.5 grams of fiber. Fiber is beneficial for keeping you regular — which keeps the digestive tract healthy. Adding fiber-rich foods to your diet can also make you feel fuller for longer periods of time — so you may eat less can even lose some weight.
#6 – Bananas contain vitamin B6.
Vitamin B6 helps to maintain proper blood sugar levels and healthy blood. It also boosts your immune system and fights fatigue. In addition, B6 plays a role in hormone control and can relieve PMS symptoms and emotional disorders.
The Bottom Line…
As you can see, one simple banana has a boatload of benefits for your body and your wellbeing!
By adding a banana a day to your diet, you’ll be giving your body:
- Many of the nutrients it needs
- The energy you need to remain alert and active
- More power to fight off diseases and disorders
Here’s a list of even more banana health benefits.
What To Do With Overripe Bananas
Perhaps the best part about bananas is they’re just as good for you when they are “old” and overripe!
Here’s my best tip for overripe bananas…
If you want to save bananas before they turn brown and overripe, just cut them up and freeze them. I usually put a smoothie’s worth into each freezer bag, as seen here:
My Favorite Overripe Banana Recipes
I always keep bananas in my kitchen, as a grab ‘n go healthy snack during the day, before bed, or when I’m heading out the door.
Sometimes I don’t eat them all before they’ve turned brown and mushy.
Yet another reason I love bananas!… Even when they’re “old”, they’re completely edible, good for you, and easy to use in banana bread and smoothies.
Here’s how I store bananas in the pantry. (A simple idea that might save you some money from buying a banana stand!)
The Easiest Banana Bread Recipe Ever!
Personally, I think banana bread is more like a dessert than an actual “bread” — because bananas themselves tend to be sweet (especially when they’re overripe). And banana bread has a good amount of sugar in it too.
But here’s a tip…
I’ve substituted 1 cup of granulated Splenda for the 1 cup of sugar in this recipe — and it was just as tasty. No one could tell the difference!
Here’s my favorite banana bread recipe…
- 2 cups Flour
- 1 cup Sugar
- 1/3 cup Oil
- 2 Eggs
- 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla
- 1/2 teaspoon Salt
- 4 to 5 Bananas (I just use however many I happen to have on my countertop)
- 3/4 cup chopped Pecans – optional
- Mash the bananas in a large bowl.
- Lightly mix the bananas with all of the other ingredients — using an electric mixer.
- Place the entire mixture into a greased muffin pan (or use cupcake liners), meatloaf pan, or 9×13 baking pan (taller than a cookie sheet)
- Bake at 350 degrees F for 40 minutes. (When a knife stuck into the center comes out clean, they’re done.)
The Easiest Banana Strawberry Smoothie Ever!
This is my favorite strawberry banana smoothie. It’s super easy and you can make it be more banana-flavored or more strawberry-flavored — depending on whether you add more of one or the other to this recipe.
- 1-1/2 Bananas
- 6 to 7 Strawberries
- 1/2 of an Orange (or a splash of orange juice instead)
- 1 to 2 tablespoons of Sugar (or honey)
- Ice Cubes (crushed ice is better to use in a blender than whole cubes)
- Place the 1/2 Orange (peel removed & split into sections) into the bottom of the blender
- Break the Banana(s) into chunks and add into the blender next
- Then add the Strawberries — rinsed and cored
- Add the Sugar or Honey. (Sometimes we add both types of sweetener for a completely different flavor, believe it or not!)
- Blend briefly – just enough to get it down to a liquid form
- Add 1 cup of crushed ice — crush them in the blender longer than you’d think (to make it less “icy” and more “smoothie”)
Here’s more about the origin of this strawberry & banana smoothie, and a few of my tips for making smoothies.
More Fun Ways To Eat Bananas
With all of the banana health benefits listed above, you’ll probably want to try even more fun banana recipes. These are some of my favorites:
- My Favorite Homemade Banana Pudding Recipe
- Moist & Chewy Banana Oatmeal Cookies
- Chocolate Chip Banana Bars Recipe
- Peanut Butter Banana Chocolate Chip Cookies
I love my kitchen… and I like to cook. But my #1 requirement is that recipes have fewer than 7 ingredients (or arrive on my doorstep via a food delivery service). My absolute favorite thing about being in the kitchen is trying out new gadgets, cookware, and storage containers! I'm SUPER organized in the kitchen (and everywhere else) and I have every gadget I could possibly need neatly and compactly tucked away until I need it. I share only the simplest recipes (which is great for people who don't like to cook), along with time-saving food tips and cooking tricks (that will save you time and money). When I'm not cooking, cleaning, or organizing my kitchen… you can find me at the corner of Good News & Fun Times as publisher of The Fun Times Guide (32 fun & helpful websites).