T Nation

Bananas: The Other Side of the Coin.

I was sent this in an email newsletter entitled “Truly Huge Fitness Tips.” There are some random facts about why bananas are good. Could I get some opinions on these facts, and all the reasons why everyone says bananas are so bad? Thanks:

Fitness Tips For 12/28/2004


Bananas
submitted by Teri

After reading this, you’ll never look at a banana in the same way again.
Bananas contain three natural sugars - sucrose, fructose and glucose,
combined with fiber, a banana gives an instant, sustained and
substantial boost of energy. Research has proven that just two
bananas provide enough energy for a strenuous 90-minute workout.
No wonder the banana is the number one fruit with the world’s leading
athletes.

Energy isn’t the only way a banana can help us keep fit, they can also
help overcome or prevent a substantial number of illnesses and
conditions, making them a must to add to our daily diet.

Anemia: high in iron, bananas can stimulate the production of
hemoglobin in the blood, helping people who have anemia.

Blood Pressure: this unique tropical fruit is extremely high in
potassium, yet low in salt, making it perfect to beat blood pressure,
so much so that the USFDA has just allowed the banana industry
to make official claims for the fruit’s ability to reduce the risk of
blood pressure and stroke.

Brain Power: 200 students at Twickenham School were helped
through their exams this year by eating bananas at breakfast, break
and lunch in a bid to boost their brainpower. Research has shown
that the potassium-packed fruit can assist learning by making pupils
more alert.

Constipation: high in fiber, including bananas in the diet can help
restore normal bowel action, helping to overcome the problem
without resorting to laxatives.

Depression: according to a recent survey undertaken by MIND,
people suffering from depression felt much better after eating a
banana. This is because bananas contain tryptophan, a type of
protein that the body converts into serotonin, known to help you
relax, improve your mood and generally make you feel happier.

Hangovers: one of the quickest ways of curing a hangover is to
make a banana milkshake sweetened with honey. The banana
calms the stomach and, with the help of honey, builds up
depleted blood sugar levels, while the milk soothes and
re-hydrates your system.

Heartburn: bananas have a natural antacid effect in the body; so
if you suffer from heartburn, try eating a banana for soothing relief.

Morning sickness: snacking on bananas between meals helps
to keep blood sugar levels up and avoid morning sickness.

Mosquito bites: before reaching for the insect bite cream, try
rubbing the affected area with the inside of a banana skin.
Many people find it very successful at reducing swelling
and irritation.

Nerves: bananas are high in B vitamins that help calm the
nervous system.

Overweight and stressed: studies at the Institute of Psychology
in Austria found pressure at work leads to gorging on comfort foods
like chocolate and crisps. Looking at 5,000 hospital patients,
researchers found the most obese were more likely to be in
high-pressure jobs. The report concluded that, to avoid
panic-induced food cravings, we need to control our blood sugar
levels by snacking on high carbohydrate foods every two hours to
keep levels steady.

PMS: forget the pills, eat a banana, the vitamin B6 it contains
regulates blood glucose levels, which can affect your mood.

Ulcers: the banana is used as a dietary food against intestinal
disorders because of it’s soft texture and smoothness, it is the
only raw fruit that can be eaten without distress in over-chronicler
cases, it also neutralizes over-acidity and reduces irritation by
coating the lining of the stomach.

Temperature control: many other cultures see bananas as a
“cooling” fruit that can lower both the physical and emotional
temperature of expectant mothers. In Thailand, for example,
pregnant women eat bananas to ensure their baby is born with
a cool temperature.

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD): bananas can help SAD
sufferers because they contain the natural mood enhancer
tryptophan.

Smoking: bananas can also help people trying to give up
smoking. The B6, B12, potassium and magnesium found in
bananas help the body recover from the affects of nicotine
withdrawal.

Stress: potassium is a vital mineral, which helps normalize the
heartbeat, sends oxygen to the brain and regulates your bodies’
water balance. When we are stressed, our metabolic rate rises,
thereby reducing our potassium levels. These can be rebalanced
with the help of a high-potassium banana snack.

Strokes: According to research in The New England Journal of
Medicine, eating bananas as part of a regular diet can cut the
risk of death by strokes by as much as 40%!

A banana is really a natural remedy for many ills. When you
compare it to an apple, it has four times the protein, twice the
carbohydrates, three times the phosphorus and five times
vitamin A and iron.

Maybe it’s time to change that well-known phrase so that we say,
“A banana a day keeps the doctor away”.

Peace brotha!

[quote]DeterminedNate wrote:
Mosquito bites: before reaching for the insect bite cream, try
rubbing the affected area with the inside of a banana skin.
Many people find it very successful at reducing swelling
and irritation.[/quote]

Well I don’t know about this one… I DO know that with mosquitos there is something about how your body processes the banana oil that attracts them. (mosqitos LOVE sugar and carbon dioxide)

If you want to repel them, just wipe some Bounce fabric softner on ya’ when you go outside. No bugs will bite you and if you happen to walk by any stray socks they won’t stick to your skin!

:slight_smile: