Monday, March 22, 2010


From my friend Charlene Dalton:

A professor at CCNY told his class that the expression "going bananas" stems from the effects of bananas on the brain.

Bananas contain three natural sugars: sucrose, fructose and glucose combined with fiber. A banana gives an instant, sustained and substantial boost of energy. Research has proven that just two bananas provide enough energy for a strenuous 90-minute workout. Energy isn't the only way a banana can help us keep fit. It can also help overcome or prevent a substantial number of illnesses and conditions, making it a must to add to our daily diet.

For example:

DEPRESSION: According to a recent survey undertaken by MIND: among people suffering from depression, many felt much better after eating a banana. Bananas contain tryptophan, a type of protein which the body converts into serotonin, which is known known to relax, improve mood and generally make one feel happier.

PMS: The vitamin B6 it contained in bananas helps regulate blood glucose levels, which can affect one's mood.

ANEMIA: High in iron, bananas can stimulate the production of hemoglobin in the blood and helps in cases of anemia.

BLOOD PRESSURE: This unique tropical fruit is very high in potassium yet low in salt, making it perfect to help blood pressure. The US Food and Drug Administration has allowed the banana industry to make official claims for the fruit's ability to reduce the risk of blood pressure and stroke.

BRAIN POWER: 200 students at a Twickenham, Middlesex, school in England were helped through their exams this year by eating bananas at breakfast, lunch, and break in a bid to boost their brain power. Research has shown that the potassium-packed fruit can assist learning by making pupils more alert.

CONSTIPATION: Because bananas are high in fiber, including them in the diet can help restore normal bowel action, helping to overcome the problem without resorting to laxatives.

HANGOVERS: One of the quickest ways of curing a hangover is to make a banana milkshake, sweetened with honey. The banana calms the stomach and, with the help of the honey, builds up depleted blood sugar levels, while the milk soothes and re-hydrates the system.

HEARTBURN: Bananas have a natural antacid effect in the body; ones suffering from heartburn should try eating a banana for soothing relief.

MORNING SICKNESS: Snacking on bananas between meals helps to keep blood sugarlevels up and to avoid morning sickness.

MOSQUITO BITES: By rubbing the affected area with the inside of a banana skin, many people find it successful at reducing swelling and irritation.

NERVES: Bananas are high in the B vitamin Complex, which help calm the nervous system.

OVERWEIGHT AND AT WORK: Studies at the Institute of Psychology in Austria found pressure at work leads to gorging on comfort food such as chocolate and chips. Analyzing 5,000 hospital patients, researchers found the most obese were more likely to be in high-pressure jobs. The report concluded that, to avoid panic-induced food cravings, they needed to control their blood sugar levels by snacking on high carbohydrate foods every two hours to keep levels steady.

ULCERS: Because of its soft texture and smoothness, the banana is used as a dietary food to aid intestinal disorders. It is the only raw fruit that can be eaten without distress in over-chronicler cases. It also neutralizes over-acidity and reduces irritation by coating the lining of the stomach.

TEMPERATURE CONTROL: Other cultures see bananas as a "cooling" fruit that can lower both the physical and emotional temperature of expectant mothers. In Thailand , for example, pregnant women eat bananas to ensure their baby is born with a cool temperature.

SEASONAL AFFECTIVE DISORDER (SAD): Bananas can help SAD sufferers because they contain the natural mood enhancer tryptophan.

SMOKING AND TOBACCO USE: Bananas can help people trying to give up smoking. The B6 and B12 they contain, as well as the potassium and magnesium found in them, help the body recover from the effects of nicotine withdrawal.

STRESS: Potassium is a vital mineral, which helps normalize the heartbeat, sends oxygen to the brain and regulates the body's water balance. When stressed, the metabolic rate rises, thereby reducing potassium levels. These can be rebalanced with the help of a high-potassium banana snack.

STROKES: According to research in The New England Journal of Medicine, eating bananas as part of a regular diet can cut the risk of death by strokes by as much as 40%!

WARTS: Those keen on natural alternatives swear that if you want to kill off a wart, take a piece of banana skin and place it on the wart, with the yellow side out. Carefully hold the skin in place with a plaster or surgical tape!

So, a banana really is a natural remedy for many ills. When you compare it to an apple, it has four times the protein, twice the carbohydrate, three times the phosphorus, five times the vitamin A and iron, and twice the other vitamins and minerals. It is also rich in potassium and is one of the best value foods around. Perhaps it's time to change that well-known phrase to: "A banana a day keeps the doctor away!"

I will add one here; want a quick shine on our shoes? Take the INSIDE of the banana skin, and rub directly on the shoe, then polish with dry cloth.

1 comment:

Mona Lisa said...

I'll bet you loved Salinger's story "A Perfect Day For Bananafish"!