Whether you’re already a banana lover or someone who needs more reasons to up his or her fruit intake, here are some big benefits of regularly eating bananas.
1. Bananas Help You Breathe Easier –Nearly 26 million Americans suffer from asthma, and it’s the leading chronic disease among children. But preventing asthma could be as simple as eating a banana a day. A study at the Imperial College of London found that children who ate at least one banana a day experienced 34 percent less wheezing than those who ate less than one banana a month. If you’re looking to prevent asthma-related symptoms and breathe better, reach for a banana.
2. Bananas Help Control Blood Sugar- High blood pressure is a silent killer. Its effects include aneurysms, narrowing of the arteries, heart disease, brain disease, stroke and kidney failure. One way to lower your blood pressure is to consume more potassium—a nutrient abundantly found in bananas. One average-sized banana contains about 12 percent of your daily value of potassium. A 2005 study conducted at St. George’s Medical School found that potassium citrate—the type of potassium found in bananas—is effective for lowering blood pressure. In the span of only a couple of weeks, participants with high blood pressure who consumed potassium citrate daily lowered their blood pressure significantly.
3. Bananas Can Help Ward Off Cancer- According to the American Institute for Cancer Research, dietary fiber “convincingly” lowers the risk of colorectal cancer, and vitamin C—of which a banana supplies about 17 percent of your daily value—”probably” lowers the risk of esophageal cancer. Fruits in general “probably” lower the risk of lung, stomach, mouth, pharynx, larynx and esophagus cancer, according to the institute.
4.Bananas Build Stronger Bones- Their high potassium content makes bananas a great food for anyone looking to build stronger, healthier bones. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, increasing the consumption of potassium-rich foods can help prevent osteoporosis; and a 2008 study found that a diet high in potassium-rich, bicarbonate-rich foods significantly reduces bone turnover (another term for bone loss). Bananas also contain 16 percent of your daily value of manganese, a nutrient that might help prevent arthritis and osteoporosis.