Adding a banana to your daily diet has an array of benefits in your body. Bananas help you reach your weight-loss goals, keep your bowels healthy, provide nutrients that regulate heart rhythm and have vitamin compounds for eye health. Keep a bunch of bananas on your desk at work and replenish your stock each week. You’ll be more likely to reach for a healthy banana — instead of heading to the vending machine — if you have a bunch sitting in front of you.
Enjoying a banana each day aids in keeping you regular. One 6-inch banana has more than 2.5 grams of total fiber, about half of which are insoluble. As insoluble fiber travels through your digestive tract, it sweeps up waste and helps push it out. You’ll have more regular bowel movements that are soft and easy to pass. Keep your bowels healthy by getting 14 grams of fiber in your diet for every 1,000 calories you consume, reports Colorado State University Extension. For example, if you tend to stick to an 1,800-calorie diet, you need about 25 grams of total fiber. You get nearly 10 percent of your daily fiber needs — for this number of calories — from one 6-inch banana.
Helps In Weight Loss: Finding foods to fit into your weight-loss diet can be challenging, but bananas make a perfect fit. Bananas are naturally sweet and can help curb your sweet tooth if you get that afternoon sugar craving. A 6-inch banana has a minimal 90 calories, about one-fourth of the calories you would get from a chocolate candy bar. Additionally, about half of the fiber content in bananas is soluble. When soluble fiber reaches your digestive tract, it absorbs water and slows digestion. Food is forced to sit in your stomach for a while, making you feel full. If you have a banana before lunch, you’ll be less likely to overeat when your food comes to the table.
Mood And Depression: Bananas can be helpful in overcoming depression “due to high levels of tryptophan, which the body converts to serotonin, the mood-elevating brain neurotransmitter,” Flores said. Plus, vitamin B6 can help you sleep well, and magnesium helps to relax muscles.
Weight Loss And Digestion: Bananas are high in fiber, which can help keep you regular. One banana can provide nearly 10 percent of your daily fiber requirement. Vitamin B6 can also help protect against type 2 diabetes and aid in weight loss, according to Flores. In general, bananas are a great weight loss food because they taste sweet and are filling, which helps curb cravings. They also help sustain blood sugar levels during workouts.
Bones: Bananas may not be overflowing with calcium, but they are still helpful in keeping bones strong. According to a 2009 article in the Journal of Physiology and Biochemistry, bananas contain an abundance of fructooligosaccharides. These are nondigestive carbohydrates that encourage digestive-friendly priobotics and enhance the body’s ability to absorb calcium.
Banana With Cancer: Some evidence suggests that moderate consumption of bananas may be protective against kidney cancer. A 2005 Swedish study found that women who ate more than 75 servings of fruits and vegetables cut their risk of kidney cancer by 40 percent, and that bananas were especially effective. Women eating four to six bananas a week halved their risk of developing kidney cancer.Bananas may be helpful in preventing kidney cancer because of their high levels of antioxidant phenolic compounds.