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On this page: Banana Facts ,
Here are some
interesting banana facts:
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. No wonder the banana is
the number one fruit with the world's leading athletes. But 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.
Depression: According to a recent survey undertaken by MIND amongst
people suffering from depression, many felt much better after eating a
banana. This is because bananas contain tryptophan, a type of protein
that the body converts into serotonin, known to make you relax, improve
mood and generally make you feel happier.
PMS: Forget the pills - eat a banana. The vitamin B6 it contains
regulates blood glucose levels, which can affect your mood.
Anemia: High in iron, bananas can stimulate the production of
hemoglobin in the blood and so helps in cases of anemia.
facts - Sage tea is a proven cure for fevers, colds and sore throats
Blood Pressure: This
unique tropical fruit is extremely high in potassium yet low in salt,
making it the perfect to beat blood pressure. So much so, the US Food
and Drug Administration has just 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 were
helped through their exams this year by eating bananas at breakfast,
break, and lunch 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: High in fiber, including bananas 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 your system. Heartburn: Bananas
have a natural antacid effect in the body, so if you suffer from
heartburn, try eating a banana for soothing relief.
Morning Sickness: Snacking on bananas between meals helps to keep blood
sugar levels up and avoid morning sickness.
Mosquito bites: Before reaching for the insect bite cream, try rubbing
the affected area with the inside of a banana skin. Many people find it
amazingly successful at reducing swelling and irritation.
Nerves: Bananas are high in B vitamins that help calm the nervous
Overweight and at work? Studies at the Institute of Psychology in
Austria found pressure at work leads to gorging on comfort food like
chocolate and crisps. Looking at 5,000 hospital patients, researchers
found the most obese were more likely to be in high-pressure jobs. The
concluded that, to avoid panic-induced food cravings, we need to
control our blood sugar levels by snacking on high carbohydrate foods
every two hours to keep levels steady.
Ulcers: The banana is used as the dietary food against intestinal
disorders because of its soft texture and smoothness. 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: Many 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.
facts - Rosemary, taken as a strong tea, sweetened with honey, is
used to treat high blood pressure
Smoking: Bananas can
also help people trying to give up smoking. The B6, 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 your body's water
balance. When we are stressed, our metabolic rate rises, thereby
reducing our potassium levels. These can be rebalanced with the help of
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. So maybe its time to change that well-known
phrase so that we say, "A banana a day keeps the doctor away!"
Drop whole avocados into boiling water for 2 mins. Remove from water
& peel. Use in salad or mashed - they will last for ages without
"Pear" shaped sometimes has a long thinner neck
Smooth thin skin that stays green coloured when ripe. Flesh bruises
Mid to late February from the Limpopo Province until (early) August
from Kwazulu-Natal. 'Out of season' fruit is available year round
Ripens quickly out of cold storage - approximately 7 days from picking.
Store at +5 degrees C - NOT COLDER - when green. Fruit will develop big
brown and black cold damage marks if stored at colder temperatures
Best known variety.
Round / egg shaped fruit
Thick, green, pebbly skin changes colour to
purple/black when ripe/ready to eat. Skin does not yield to pressure
easily - once soft or shriveled, fruit is overripe.
Small to medium (140 - 350g) - large fruit an exception.
In proportion to fruit size - small fruit, small
Mid / late May from the Limpopo Province until October from
Kwazulu-Natal. 'Out of Season' fruit is available year round.
Excellent shelf life with very few port harvest problems. Store at +5
degrees C - NOT COLDER.
Rich and nutty, as opposed to the stringy/watery "Natal" seedling
This variety has a definite "neck" compared to the other varieties.
Thick rough green coloured skin that stays green coloured when ripe.
The thick skin does not yield to pressure easily.
Medium to large (230- 550g)
Medium to small
Short season. June from the Limpopo Province, July from Kwazulu-Natal.
Out of season fruit not easily available
Store at +7 degrees C - NOT COLDER
Sometimes slightly sweet.
Oval / pear shaped.
Thick green coloured skin with small corky speckles (lenticels). Stays
green coloured when ripe. Skin shrivels at stem end if picked when not
Medium large to large (312 - 500g)
June from the North Eastern parts of the country until late September
from KwaZulu Natal. Out of season fruit is available late in the year.
Ripens quickly out of cold storage. Skin prone to lenticel damage.
Although cosmetically unappealing, this does not effect internal
quality. Store at +6 degrees C - NOT COLDER, fruit prone to chilling
Excellent, rich and nutty.
Late season egg shaped fruit
Slightly rough dark green skin that stays green coloured when ripe
Large (300 - 500g)
August / September from the Limpopo Province. October from
Kwazulu-Natal. Late season fruit readily available
Store at +5 degrees C - NOT COLDER