Banana is a versatile fruit…amazingly healthy, almost always hygienic in its custom wrapping, easily available and economic.
Not only can a banana make a healthful and wonderful snack, it is often used in many innovative ways to add character, sweetness and a creamy quality to many recipes.
Let’s discuss first some of the health benefits of this amazing fruit and then we’ll go over some innovative and surprising ways to use some of its hidden benefits.
- Bananas in blood pressure: Bananas are rich source of potassium and their effectiveness in controlling blood pressure has been repeatedly proved.
- Cholesterol control and banana: Despite being a low fat food, the kind of minimal fat that the banana does contain( sitosterol, camposterol, etc), is structurally very similar to dietary cholesterol.
- Digestive uses of banana are many an innumerable. Fiber content, pectin content, low glycemic index and the sheer density of the food make it a GI friendly food.
- It is also an easy daily remedy for constipation.
- Athletic value: we’ve all seen tennis players and other athletes grab a banana at break. This is because is it is serious athletic fuel. It provides all the electrolytes, potassium and other goodie that processed sports drinks provide without the dyes, preservatives, etc.
- Dense rich food: In situations such as recovering from illness or weight loss where amount of nutrition versus quantity of food is measured, the banana comes through everytime
- Bananas against gastric ulcers: Bananas are believed to contain enzymes that protect the gastric mucosa from ulcers by reducing the effect of unfriendly bacteria. In addition, they cause cell growth that thickens the gastric mucosa. This makes bananas a natural antacid.
- Bananas for bone health: Being a rich source of potassium and other vitamins and minerals, bananas are very good for bone health.
- Mood enhancers. Tryptophan which directly affects serotonin in bananas, is known to cause a soothing and mood stabilizing effect.
- Bananas for skin: Caretonoids in bananas are known to have a antioxidant effects which are only anticancer, but also good for skin.
- Improves absorption in the gut of other nutrients as well.
In all, banana has proved to be a friend worth having close!
Below are some fun and innovative ways to use it, aside from it’s consumption and nutritive value.
- Banana peel polishes silverware and give it new shine. Remove the stringy parts and give your silverware a good rub with the inside of the banana peel. Wipe off with soft cloth to see effects.
- It has the same effect on leather. You can polish your shoe, jacket and even leather couches.
- Aphids!! Aphids are notorious bothers on a rose plant. Cut up some banana peel or dried up peel and bury it an inch deep in the soil around the plant. DO NOT use the whole banana tho! It’ll attract other creatures.
- Cut up or dried up banana peel in the soil of plants serve and additional function of enriching the soil with nutrients such as potassium.
- Give houseplant leaves a shine with the inside of a banana peel.
- Banana face mask: mash up a medium sized banana and put it on our face. Leave on for 20 – 30 mins. Wash off for glowing energized skin. For added benefits, put a spoonful of honey and 4 tablespoons of yogurt in the banana.
- Foot care: the same paste may be used on feet to give yourself healthy moist skin on your heels.
- The banana peel can be used for giving your heels a good scrub before you apply the paste.
- The banana peel is also believed to help in preventing acne. However, you must use it 2-3 times a day for about a week to see results.
- Body mask: Bananas with sugar make a wonderful body scrub. Mix about 2 medium size bananas with 4 spoons of granulated sugar. The sugar will eliminate the dead cells and the banana will moisturize the skin.
- Hair mask: A medium size banana, with some avovado or coconut oil makes an excellent hair mask. Leave it on for 20 minutes before washing if off. It strengthens damaged hair and makes the hair soft.
- A paste of banana and yogurt left on the hair for 20 minutes is belived to prevent hair loss!
- Cure for itchy skin: Rubbing banana peel on irritated skin makes the itchiness go away.
- Bananas can help ripen other fruits like mangoes and avocados.
- To cure a wart, stick a small piece of ripe banana peel on the wart and leave it on overnight. Stick with tape if needed.
- Compost! Another wonderful use of the banana and it’s peel. Enrich the soil if you don’t use for anything else! Bury the remnants in the soil.
- Over ripe bananas make wonderful banana breads and additions to sweets like pongal, payasam, etc.
So the next time you come across a banana or banana peel.,you know what to do with it!