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Benefits of Banana, The Wonder Fruit

Benefits of Banana,The Wonder Fruit - Bananas contain three natural sugars namely sucrose, fructose and glucose as well as fibre. It therefore gives and instant, sustained and substantial boost of energy. Glucose is a sugar that the body can use immediately. 

Benefits of Banana

Fructose needs to be metabolised in the liver first before it can be used as energy where as glucose can be used directly by any cell in the body for energy. The fibre causes a delay in the absorption of the sugars resulting in the sustained energy effect.

Bananas also contain starch, a complex sugar, that has to be absorbed and then broken down before it can be used as energy. This process takes time resulting in the sustained energy release.

Many leading athletes use bananas as an energy source while competing. It has been shown to be more effective than energy drinks. Two bananas provide enough energy for a strenuous 90 minute work out.

Bananas have other health benefits as well. Bananas have a whole range of vitamins, minerals and other chemicals in it, such as potassium, iron, magnesium, Vitamin C, various Vitamin B's to name a few.

The Health Benefits of Bananas

Anaemia : This usually occurs females and is due to a lack of iron. Bananas contain iron, to supplement the dietary intake, and magnesium, essential in energy production. The symptoms of anaemia is a lack of energy and lethargy. The iron will directly assist in the production of more blood cells to carry oxygen to the body and the magnesium will assist in reducing the symptoms by increasing the energy production.

Alertness : Because of the energy effects of bananas students fed bananas were more alert and the serotonin (see later) increased their mood and were better able to study.

Blood Pressure : The US FDA (Food and Drug Administration) has allowed the banana industry to claim that bananas can reduce the risk of blood pressure and strokes. This due to the high potassium and low sodium levels.

Constipation : Bananas are high in fibre an essential ingredient for normal bowel functions. It also contains tryptophan, which is broken down into serotonin, a neurotransmitter in the body. Serotonin in the intestines controls the movement of the intestines.

Depression : Bananas contain a protein, tryptophan, which is broken down into serotonin, a neurotransmitter in the body. In the Central Nervous System (CNS, brain) serotonin is responsible for moods. Increasing the levels increases the feeling of well being.

Hangover : A banana milkshake sweetened with honey makes a brilliant hangover cure. The banana and honey increase the blood sugar levels, the banana and milk have a calming effect on the stomach and the milk rehydrates as well.

Morning Sickness : Because of its ability to maintain blood sugar levels a banana between meals can help reduce the morning sickness. A banana just before bed will maintain the blood sugar levels over the night.

Stress : Bananas must be the ideal food for this problem. It is high in the Vitamin B's essential for coping with stress and has tryptophan, broken down into serotonin the happy neurotransmitter in the body. It is a perfect snack food for comfort eating. Stress also reduces our bodies potassium levels resulting in an imbalance. Banana with its high potassium levels replaces this.

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) : The tryptophan and the increased energy levels help to reduce this problem.

Smoking : Eat a banana instead of lighting up. Bananas can help with people trying to quit. The various Vitamin B's and the tryptophan elevate the mood reducing the effect of nicotine withdrawl. Snacking on a banana will also reduce the problem of weight gain experienced by people giving up.
Strokes : The New England Journal Of Medicine has published research that shows having a banana as a regular part of your diet can reduce strokes by up to 40%.

As can been seen from the above the banana is truly a remarkable fruit, one that you should make part of your daily diet.
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