The health benefits of bananas should be clear to just about everybody by now. With their sweet taste, these delicious fruits do a lot for your body, including helping your bones, kidneys, eyesight, and blood pressure with their many vitamins and minerals. And even if you don't like to eat bananas by themselves, they are excellent when blended together with milk and ice to make a bananas smoothie.
Since bananas are mostly composed of sugar and fiber, these fruits provide a rich source of energy that easily beats out caffeine for a natural high that allows you complete a strenuous workout or just go about your daily routine with increased vigor. And of course all that fiber is essential in keeping the human body regular.
In terms of specific nutrients, bananas contain a lot of essential vitamins and minerals, including Vitamins B6 and B12, as well as potassium and magnesium. All of these elements work together to reduce stress, lower blood pressure, and elminate heartburn and ulcers. Potassium and magnesium in particular are helpful in reducing cramping and physical weakness, and magnesium has been known to decrease eye twitching if that is a problem for you. And according to the New England Journal of Medicine, regularly eating bananas as part of a healthy diet can reduce strokes by as much as 40%.
But those aren't all of the benefits of bananas: even the peels get in on the action! No, you don't want to eat them, but did you know that just rubbing a banana peel on your skin can help to reduce irritation or infection (especially helpful with mosquito bites). Bananas can also be used to treat warts. I'm sorry, but I have to say it: that's enough to make you go bananas! (And even when you're all done with the peels, they work great as fertilizer if you have a home garden).
Banana Smoothies Recipes
As Simple or Complex as You Want!
Making a banana smoothie is a great way to start your day, enjoy for an afternoon snack, or even a late-night treat. And making them is incredibly simple, especially if you just stick to the basic ingredients. The easiest way to make a banana smoothie is to blend a cup of milk, a cup of ice, and one banana together until you get the creamy texture you want. However, if you're looking to add some different fruit flavors to your smoothie, try adding any or all of these items to the above:
- 2 tbsp brown sugar (or 3-4 tbsp of honey)
- 1 cup limeade
- half pint of fresh strawberries
- half of a pineapple
- 1 cup coconut water
- 1 cup banana yogurt (or any other fruit flavor of yogurt, really)
- 1 scoop of your favorite ice cream flavor
- 1/2 cup blackberries (or blueberries, or raspberries)
You should adjust or eliminate any of those ingredients to suit your personal taste. One more ingredient that might seem strange, but is actually really good in a smoothie with banana, is avocado. Seriously, give it a try.
A Banana a Day
If you weren't already eating at least one banana a day, I hope some of these banana smoothie suggestions get you to start. Personally, I begin every day with a smoothie that includes a banana, tangerine, vanilla protein powder, almond milk, and ice. It's delicious, and it really gives me the energy I need to go out and make the most of my day. If you have any other smoothie suggestions or other interesting ways to prepare bananas with meals, let me know in the comments!