As a staple in hundreds of different smoothie recipes, bananas are a go-to for many people trying to eat healthily or simply up their fruit intake. But how much do you know about this fruit? Read on to find out a little more about the history, origin and benefits of bananas:
The history and origin of bananas
As one of the world’s most popular fruits, you’ve likely eaten banana plenty of times in your life. Readily available in supermarkets and grocers, this yellow-skinned fruit has a long history. Originating in India, as part of the Musa family plants, bananas are now grown worldwide as a crop. Bananas were first seen outside of India as long ago as 300 BC, where they became more common in broader Asia as well as Africa.
It wasn’t until the late 1800s that this fruit became popular worldwide, even though Britain saw bananas for the first time hundreds of years before. In the 1940s and 50s, bananas were still considered a kind of luxury – but in modern Britain, they’re as common as any other fruit, and are readily available year-round.
Health benefits of bananas
There are plenty of health benefits to bananas. As a fruit that contains a high amount of potassium, they are particularly good for your heart – which means they can even reduce your blood pressure if eaten consistently. Beyond potassium content, bananas also contain tryptophan, which has been shown to boost your mood. Vitamin B6 and magnesium help to relax your muscles and improve your overall quality of sleep—all great benefits.
Finally, the fibre content of bananas is another excellent health benefit. A single banana can contain as much as 10% of your daily requirement while being sweet and filling to help prevent hunger and even support weight loss. Resistant starch is the type of fibre that bananas are high in, which can potentially support better blood sugar and stomach health overall.
Bananas are a great addition to any smoothie. They add bulk, taste great and have plenty of health benefits that make them worth adding to just about any recipe. Just 1 banana contributes to 1 of your 5-a-day. They’re also suitable alternatives to eggs in pancakes or waffles, as well as great on their own.
- Jan Not in season in January
- Feb In season in February
- Mar In season in March
- Apr In season in April
- May In season in May
- Jun Not in season in June
- Jul Not in season in July
- Aug Not in season in August
- Sep Not in season in September
- Oct Not in season in October
- Nov Not in season in November
- Dec Not in season in December