Food Profile: Banana

Bananas are a popular and common fruit in the tropical regions of the world. The tree, which is actually an annual herb in terms of botanical classification produces one bunch of fruits and an edible flower in it’s life. It then propagates by growing smaller trees along its sides. Bananas come in many shapes, sizes and even colors. The Philippines even houses one of the world centers of banana biodiversity research! They are used fresh or cooked in dishes. Bananas are a favorite fruit and are highly affordable meaning all can enjoy their benefits. Let’s take a look at exactly what nutrients a Banana contains:

Effects On Immunity

A medium sized banana is about 100g and provides a well-balanced profile of Vitamins and Minerals. Pyrodoxine or Vitamin B6 is present in high amounts, This is an important nutrient as it is needed for production of lymphocytes and antibodies. It is also quite high in Vitamin C, an antioxidant and nutrient that has far reaching effects on our immune system.

Manganese and Magnesium are important minerals for bolstering your Innate Immunity and there is a high level of potassium, with nearly no sodium, which means that bananas help to counteract the negative effects of excessive salt intake.

COVID Resistance: Vitamin C allows other antioxidants like Glutathione to function properly and is used for immune cell generation. B6 is needed for your adaptive immunity to function, which protects you from variants. Magnesium is highly important in COVID infection as it allows your macrophages to convert into their anti-inflammatory forms.

Special Information

Banana trees are simple to grow and do not take up much space. They produce a bunch of bananas every 3-6 months. If you have a 100sqm yard you can easily grow enough for a constant supply. Unlike true trees, bananas are soft and easily removed, making them a popular transition plant for orchards. The trunks are also edible and make for good compost material.

Choose Organic

You need to be careful when choosing your bananas as spraying of pesticides is a common practice in plantations. The large yellow Cavendish bananas produced by large companies such as Dole for example are so toxic that farmers are not allowed to eat them until they have been cleaned thoroughly. Local Bananas vary in the amount of chemicals used in their production, depending on variety, as some are more appealing to insects.

While most bananas sold in the market are backyard grown and organic, it always helps to confirm this.

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