Today’s Solutions: December 08, 2022

Bananas are one of nature’s blessings—they’re conveniently wrapped in a beautiful yellow peeling and are touted as a fantastic source of potassium. There are a lot of lesser-known health benefits that could entice us even further to incorporate more bananas into our diets. 

Your skin can improve

According to nutritionist Lisa Richards, “one medium banana contains 13 percent of the daily manganese needs,” which packs a lot of punch for such a small snack. 

She goes on to explain that “manganese is essential for making collagen, which creates a youthful appearance and protects against free radical damage that can lead to wrinkles.”

Your colon will thank you

A 2017 study published in Nutrition Bulletin reveals that bananas contain “resistant starch,” which “helps generate the production of short-chain fatty acids,” says John Fawkes, nutritional counselor and managing editor at wellness site The Unwinder.

Short-chain fatty acids “play a vital role in colon health,” he adds, so generating more short-chain fatty acid production is great news for your colon.

You can avoid muscle cramps

If you find that you often experience muscle aches and pains, chowing down on a banana could be just what the doctor ordered.

“Bananas contain essential electrolytes that can help keep the body hydrated and balanced,” says Richards. “When the body gets out of balance related to our minerals, we can begin experiencing negative side effects like muscle cramps.”

They can balance out the salt you’re eating

One of the reasons potassium is so important is because it’s “an essential nutrient that helps combat the negative effects of sodium,” explains Celine Beitchman, Director of Nutrition at the Institute of Culinary Education.

Dr. Chun Tang from Pall Mall Medical supports Beitchman’s claims, adding that “having a good level of potassium in your diet is great for your heart health and blood pressure, helping to reduce the risk of strokes and heart disease.”

They can help you lose weight

Even though bananas are known for being high in sugar and calories when compared to other fruits, they are surprisingly great for weight control, “due to the fiber and antioxidant content,” says Mary Wirtz, MS, RDN, CSSD.

Since bananas are rich in fiber, they help slow digestion which makes you feel satiated for longer and less likely to make impulsive snack decisions between meals.

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