We Know the Health Benefits of Eating Bananas that have been told to us for years and years. Recently, however, nutritionists and researchers have been looking into the peels with some surprising results. The banana peel has some incredible health benefits that may surprise you. We even think you might find the results “A-Peeling”!
Health Benefits of Banana Peel
Did you know that banana peels are not only edible but also have several health benefits? That’s right – the next time you eat a banana, don’t throw away the peel! Here are just a few of the ways that eating banana peels can benefit your health:
Banana Peels Boost Your Mood
According to a study at the University of Taiwan, banana peels are packed full of serotonin which boosts your mood and helps you feel happy. Some studies have shown that eating two banana peels can raise your serotonin level by nearly 15% in three days. Plus, the banana peel can help you sleep easily because of the tryptophan found in it. Tryptophan is the sleep-inducing amino acid famously found in turkey and milk products.
Banana Peel May Improve Cardiovascular Health
Research is being done on the benefits banana peels have on cardiovascular health. There have been some early results showing promise that the peels may help to lower cholesterol levels. The peels of the banana contain more fiber than what is found in the meat of the actual banana. Scientists are studying how much fiber may lower your cholesterol which helps prevent cardiovascular disease, strokes, and cancer. Researchers are studying patients who eat banana peels daily, and promising results show decreased LDL or bad cholesterol and total cholesterol.
Banana Peel Has Powerful Antioxidant Properties
Banana peels contain something called lutein which is a carotenoid with antioxidant properties. It reduces oxidative stress and neutralizes free radicals in various organs, including your skin. The lutein found in the peel also supplies nutritional sustenance to your eyes. Lutein reduces the risk of macular degeneration and cataracts, filters harmful UV rays, and protects your eyes from free radical damage.
Banana Peel is High in Fiber
Banana Peels! They aren’t high in calories and can be crucial in helping to keep extra pounds from gathering at your waistline. Plus, don’t forget all that fiber which can slow digestion and boost feelings of fullness. When shopping, choose green peels, which are better for cooking. You will get a healthy amount of probiotics, which research shows are essential to balancing the body’s internal flora for weight loss. Green skins are also rich in resistant starch, the “calorie-free carb” that our bodies can’t digest and triggers fat burning in animal studies.
Banana Peel Has Anti-Cancer Prevention Properties
Studies are being done on banana peels and their anti-carcinogenic compounds that help prevent cancer. Peels have been found to contain cytoprotective and antimutagenic properties, which reduce cancer risk. The peels have been found to contain carotenoids and polyphenols like those found in green tea that helps keep your immune system healthy.
Banana Peel May Increase Red Blood Cells
If you consider adding banana peels to your diet, you could be helping your red blood cells. The nutrients found in peels can help prevent your red blood cells from breaking down. In previous studies, nutritionists and researchers lean toward green peels more effectively protecting the body from free radicals.
Banana Peel is Nutrient Dense
Although the concept of consuming a banana peel may be relatively new to the Western world, it has been consumed for many years all over the world. Green banana peels are mainly high in vitamin B6 and B12, as well as magnesium and potassium. They are also high in protein, polyunsaturated fats, dietary fiber, and essential amino acids, making them an excellent nutrition source for your diet.
Banana Peels May Aid in Weight Loss
The function of fiber is to slow down digestion, giving you greater satiety and making you feel fuller longer. It’s thought that banana peels help you feel fuller quicker and assist with weight reduction because they are high in fiber. Banana peels also aid in weight loss by helping to prevent blood sugar levels from spiking.
A study also found green banana flour to lower hunger and improve satiety.
Banana Peel May Improve Liver Function
According to recent research, banana peels have also been used to treat acute liver failure in animals. In a recent mouse study, researchers found that all mice fed banana peels with acute liver failure had significantly improved liver function, total cholesterol, triglycerides, LDL-c, and VLDL-C compared to placebo. Furthermore, the HDL-c levels of the banana peel–treated rodents increased.
Banana Peel May Help Lower Anxiety
According to a recent study, Banana peel extracts may have anti-anxiety effects. The banana fruit pulp and peel extract was tested in male mice for its anti-stress and memory-enhancing capabilities. According to the research, the banana peel and banana pulp extract reduced anxiety in male mice. Although these results are based on animal experiments, they suggest that human trials will likely follow soon.
Banana Peel is Good for the Skin
Banana peels are also suitable for topical use on the skin. The vitamins and minerals in banana peels can help moisturize the skin, reduce redness, and fight wrinkles. It is also possible to use banana peels to treat warts, acne, and psoriasis. Within a few weeks, rub the inside of a banana peel on the affected area for 10 minutes daily.
Banana peels also help reduce puffiness in the eyes and dark circles. Place a banana peel over each eye and relax for about 15 minutes.
Banana Peel May Improve Hair Health
Banana peel is suggested as an ingredient in hair masks by proponents of natural products. Your hair is said to be softer and shinier after using it.
Banana peels contain antioxidants, which supports that claim. The antioxidants in these products neutralize free radicals, helping your hair to stay strong and healthy.
How Do You Eat Banana Peels?
You can eat a banana peel raw, but it is not very tasty and tends to be somewhat stringy. You can boil the peel, softening it up and keeping the essential nutrients. You can also make a fun dessert with it. In many parts of Asia, the banana peel is added to a fresh fruit dessert. If you want more sweetness from the peel, let it turn darker before eating it.
You can also make a boiled banana peel tea. Just boil your banana peels in water, and then add your favorite sweeteners to the water. Make sure you save the peel itself! Why not get the bonus of the fiber!
Make sure always to buy organic bananas if you will eat the peels. Non-organic peels are directly exposed to pesticides when trees are sprayed. You want to avoid ingesting these harmful toxins. The cost of buying organic may be a bit higher, but you’ll avoid eating pesticides and insecticides. Your body will thank you for it!
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- Antioxidant activity and protective effect of banana peel against oxidative hemolysis of human erythrocyte at different stages of ripening – PubMed (nih.gov)
- Phenolic compounds within banana peel and their potential uses: A review – PubAg (usda.gov)
- Effects of Native Banana Starch Supplementation on Body Weight and Insulin Sensitivity in Obese Type 2 Diabetics – PMC (nih.gov)
- The effect of banana peels supplemented diet on acute liver failure rats – ScienceDirect
- Banana fruit pulp and peel involved in antianxiety and antidepressant effects while invigorate memory performance in male mice: Possible role of potential antioxidants – PubMed (nih.gov)