Bananas are cheap, easy to transport, and delicious. Their creamy sweet flesh offers many health benefits. Bananas are rich sources of the prebiotic compound fructooligosaccharide, which feeds beneficial probiotic bacteria in the intestines. This friendly bacteria helps the human body absorb more nutrients from food, especially calcium, and also helps to protect the body against harmful microorganisms.
Bananas that are dark yellow when ripe are also good sources of carotenoids. Carotenoids have been found to protect against age-related macular degeneration, a debilitating eye disease. Bananas are also high in potassium. Diets high in potassium have been linked to lower levels of blood pressure and a reduced risk of stroke.
Green bananas have a very intriguing quality. Unripe bananas contain large amounts resistant starch, which humans cannot digest. As green bananas ripen, their resistant starch content gradually decreases and their sugar content increases. Since the starch in green bananas is not fully digested by the body, the unripened fruit can provide a yummy snack with a limited caloric impact.
1 medium ripe banana (118 g) – about 7 to 7 ¾ inches long
• Total Carbs – 26.95 g
• Dietary Fiber – 3.07 g
• Sugars – 14.43 g
• Protein – 1.29 g
• Total fat – .39 g
• Calories – 105.02
• Glycemic Index (GI) – 52
• Glycemic Load (GL)- 12.41