Who doesn’t love a banana? Whether you’re grabbing a quick snack or eating them mixed in some muesli, these fruits always come in handy.
Bananas, which are actually a type of berry, have been enjoyed for thousands of years. And for good reason. They have it all when it comes to minerals, vitamins, and let’s not forget fiber content.
But is eating a banana for breakfast good or not?
This is a valid question, especially if you’re watching the calories, or simply want the best food to start the day right. Keep reading to find out.
Benefits of banana for breakfast
If you’re used to sugar-filled cereals, then switching to a banana with its natural sweetness is certainly a better choice. Some of the other benefits of eating bananas in the morning are:
Energy Boost: Bananas are nature’s energy bars, thanks to their natural sugars like glucose, fructose, and sucrose. These are great for a quick burst of energy, which is particularly helpful if you go exercising first thing in the morning.
Packed with Nutrients: Bananas are like nutrient powerhouses. They’re high in:
- vitamin C
- vitamin B6
It’s nutrients like this that help your body function at an optimal level, lessening the chance of certain diseases.
Digestive Health: If you want to keep your digestive system happy, bananas can lend a helping hand. Try a banana in the morning if you want to wake up your bowels and flush your system. Best of all, the fiber found in bananas – resistant starch, is a prebiotic. Prebiotics are not digested, instead, they feed the good bacteria in your gut, keeping their levels high.
Antioxidant power: Every day we come into contact with free radicals, from pollution, and the ozone, some are even produced within the body. If these build up to a high level, they can damage cells and cause serious illness.
Like many other fruits, bananas are a great source of antioxidants such as flavonoids and amines. All these help prevent the oxidative damage that free radicals do to our health. They also help to take care of skin health, heart health and prevent degenerative disease, and more.
Stop swelling: Bananas can help reduce swelling, strengthen the nervous system, and help with the production of white blood cells. All this is down to the high content of vitamin B6 that bananas have.
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Should We Or Shouldn’t We Eat Bananas On An Empty Stomach?
Here’s the thing – bananas have a high sugar content of around 25%. That sugar is a combination of fructose, sucrose, and glucose. Eating it on an empty stomach provides instant energy, but can also spike your blood sugar pretty fast.
And that surge will only last a few hours before leaving you crashing hard. Eating bananas before meals can end up making you feel sluggish and lethargic when the sugar high wears off.
On top of that, bananas are acidic fruits. Downing one on an empty stomach can increase your body’s acidity levels. You’ll get that initial rush, but end up feeling drained and dull later. In some people, bananas for breakfast can also disturb their bowel movements.
The biggest no-no? Eating bananas on an empty stomach if you have diabetes. That sugar spike and crash can be bad news for blood sugar control.
what’s The best time to have bananas?
So if you can’t eat bananas on an empty stomach in the morning, when is the best time to eat bananas? Scientific evidence doesn’t show that it’s better to eat bananas in the evening or nighttime either. In fact, in alternative therapies such as Ayurveda, bananas are often seen as leading to more at night. On top of that, metabolism is at its slowest at night. So morning time is still the best time to eat bananas.
But what about blood sugar spikes?
First off, you don’t need to completely refuse bananas for breakfast, you just need to be smart about how you eat them. They should never be eaten on an empty stomach and should always be paired with something else.
Nutritionist Dr. Daryl Gioffre states that; ‘If banana breakfast isn’t balanced with a healthy fat, most of its benefits are lost, while spikes in blood sugar and acid are gained.
He suggests eating bananas with something that will neutralize the acid and slow down sugar metabolism to avoid a spike and crash. Try a healthy fat like peanut butter.
Bottom line – Is Eating A Banana For Breakfast Good Or Not?
Is eating a banana for breakfast good? Well yes and no. Unquestionably bananas are healthy, nutrient-dense food that should be part of many people’s diets. They offer an energy boost and support good digestion, which is all great in itself.
However, they should never be consumed on an empty stomach unless paired with something else like a good fat or protein. It’s the right combination of protein with bananas that will make this a good start to the day. Enjoy!