We all know bananas are healthy snacks that are rich in nutrients such as potassium, but did you know that, depending on their ripeness, their health benefits differ? Here are a few ways the ripeness of your banana can affect your health.
Bananas are one of the best snacks between meals, as they are high in vitamin B6, vitamin C, manganese, potassium, and fiber. They are a snack of choice for athletes, as they can shorten the recovery time after exercise and are more effective in delivering energy than sport energy drinks. Bananas can even reduce rates of getting certain kinds of cancer and can also improve one’s cognitive function.
Knowing all this, who wouldn’t choose a banana as their favorite in-between-meal snack? But there are different health benefits that vary depending on its stage of ripeness. Here is how it unfolds:
1. Green bananas
Green bananas are lower on the glycemic index, which is good if you want to monitor your sugar levels. They contain prebiotics, which are essential for gut health, but, due to their starchy content, they will keep you feeling full for a longer time. On the other hand, green bananas are low in antioxidants, which are beneficial.
This is the stage right before all those brown spots start appearing. They are now ripe enough to eat, easy to digest, and taste sweet. They are also higher in antioxidants than when they were green. Thanks to this, they will help the body fight illnesses like cancer and heart diseases.
3. Yellow with brown spots
Bananas with brown spots are rich in antioxidants, and, moreover, they are high on the tumor necrosis factor (TNF), which will help break down cancerous cells in the body. They are also easy to digest, but unfortunately, due to their sweetness, they increase glucose levels in the blood.
4. Brown and soft
Fully ripe bananas are high in TNF, which will help to fight any abnormal cells. They are also high in antioxidants. According to a Japanese scientific study, the degree of ripeness corresponds to the degree of the anti-cancer effect, so ripe bananas could be most healthy in that respect. You just have to be careful they don’t go rotten!