Bananas are sweet and tasty fruits conveniently packaged by nature in a happy yellow peel. Their easy portability makes them great for grabbing and snacking on the go. In addition to being delicious fruits to consume on their own, bananas make flavorful additions to salads, desserts, and even stir-fries. Apples have long been associated with good health, and many bright and colorful fruits are now touted as “superfruits.” However, the humble banana contains many nutrients and potential health benefits as well. Read on for 12 reasons bananas make great additions to your diet.
Bananas are great sources of potassium, with one medium banana containing about 422 mg of this important mineral. Potassium is a critical component in blood pressure regulation. It also plays a role in metabolism, fluid balance, muscle contraction, and healthy nervous system function. The CDC reports that most Americans do not get enough potassium in their diet, and therefore it is listed as a nutrient of concern for Americans. Furthermore, the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends increasing the consumption of foods like baked potatoes, salmon, and bananas in order to improve potassium levels.
11. Vitamin B6
One banana contains 20 to 33% of the recommended dietary allowance of vitamin B6. This vitamin is helpful for metabolism, red blood cell formation, and healthy immune and nervous system function. A deficiency in vitamin B6 can cause a skin rash, cracked or dry lips, depression, confusion, and a weakened immune system. Whip up a refreshing tropical pineapple and banana smoothie for a delicious dose of vitamin B6 that will help keep your body, brain, and skin strong and healthy.