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13 Amazing Health Benefits Of Red Banana (Better Than Yellow Banana!)

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13 Amazing Health Benefits Of Red Banana (Better Than Yellow Banana!)

While most people in the West are familiar with the traditional yellow banana, the fact of the matter is that their red-skinned cousins actually offer you a bigger variety of health benefits.  Red bananas – also called Red Spanish or Cuban bananas, Colorado bananas or Lal kela – are native to India and Southeast Asia, but are now also grown in Australia, New Zealand and many places in the Pacific Islands. However, they are growing more popular in the West as people discover just how healthy they are.

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    1. Increased Immunity

    A red banana is rich in both beta-carotene and vitamin C (to the tune of 16% of your recommended daily allowance). These powerful antioxidants are able to help boost the immune system and make it easier for your body to fight off bacteria, viruses, and other harmful microorganisms in order to stay healthy and have fewer problems like colds and flu.

    2. Boosted Energy Levels

    A red banana contains three different varieties of natural sugars: fructose, sucrose and glucose. Because some of these sugars are broken down quickly and other slowly, eating this fruit will give you both a burst of quick energy and then slow, sustained energy throughout the day.  This is what makes it a perfect breakfast food.

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      3. Improves Digestion

      Because it is so rich in fiber, a red banana is also a great choice if you have digestive problems like constipation. Fiber helps to improve the function of the entire digestive tract and pushes the food through it more efficiently, reducing your chances of suffering from the pain and discomfort that constipation can bring with it.  Regular bowel movements also help to reduce the risk of colon cancer.

      4. Treats Heartburn

      Constipation is not the only gastric problem that a red banana can help with: it can also help if you have problems with heartburn. Red bananas have an anti-acid affect and can soothe down even a very upset stomach. If used regularly, it can even take care of chronic heartburn once and for all.

      5. Improves Vision

      Vision is precious, but it is often taken for granted until it is somehow compromised. However, a diet which includes red bananas on a regular basis supports good visual health as it is rich in vitamin A, which the eyes need to function at their best.

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      6. Good for the Heart

      A red banana is also a great choice for a heart-healthy diet. This is because they are rich in potassium, which counteracts the negative effects of sodium and lowers high blood pressure, which is a major risk factor for heart attacks and other forms of heart disease – as well as incidents like strokes.

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        7. Treats Anemia

        Anemia is a serious condition in which the body does not have enough iron to make hemoglobin, the part of the red blood cell which carries oxygen from the lungs to all other parts of the body. Red bananas can help treat anemia because they are rich in the vitamin B-6 which the body needs to build hemoglobin in the first place.

        8. Helps Smoking Cessation

        Quitting smoking is a great healthy lifestyle choice, but it is also a difficult one on both the body and the mind.  However, red bananas can help this process. They are rich in both potassium and magnesium, which helps the body to deal with the effects of nicotine withdrawal and makes it easier to break the cycle of addiction.

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        9. Aids in Weight Loss

        There are several reasons why a red banana is good for weight loss. First, it is low in calories: a single banana is only 90 calories. Because it is incredibly high in fiber, it will give you a feeling of fullness and make it easier to cut down on calories without suffering from hunger pangs.

        10. Boosts Metabolism

        A red banana can also serve as a great boost for your metabolism. This is because it is a rich source of vitamin B-6, which helps support healthy metabolic function. And if your metabolism is functioning well, this means that it is not only easier to lose weight but also to keep energy levels steady throughout the day.

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          11. Elevates the Mood

          Believe it or not, red bananas can actually help not only your physical health but your emotional health as well.  How?  The vitamin B-6 is needed by the body to transform tryptophan into serotonin, the “feel-good” hormone that can help with problems like depression.

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          12. Delicious Flavor, Texture and Aroma

          Those who have eaten a red banana often report that they have a taste of raspberries, but that they give off the aroma of strawberries instead. Their flesh is sweet and creamy. These are considered benefits because they make the bananas more attractive and thus easier to incorporate into the diet.

          13. Easy to Use in a Variety of Dishes

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            Apart from all the health benefits listed above, a red banana has the added benefit of being easy to use in a variety of dishes, making it no challenge to add them to your diet.

            While a red banana is delicious if eaten fresh, their flavor is even better when baked or sautéed. If you like desserts and sweet dishes, these fruits taste great when paired with berries, apples or citrus fruits like lemons and yogurt.  If you prefer savory dishes, it goes well with meats like pork or chicken, black beans, cream and chili peppers.

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            So go ahead — try a red banana today!  You can find plenty of recipes available online. These fruits are becoming more widely available as they increase in popularity and their  benefits make it a truly great dietary choice, especially if you are interested in a healthy, natural lifestyle.

            Featured photo credit: fitnesskites.com via fitnesskites.com

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            Brian Wu

            Health Writer, Author

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            Last Updated on January 27, 2022

            5 Reasons Why Food is the Best Way to Understand a Culture

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            5 Reasons Why Food is the Best Way to Understand a Culture

            Food plays an integral role in our lives and rightfully so: the food we eat is intricately intertwined with our culture. You can learn a lot about a particular culture by exploring their food. In fact, it may be difficult to fully define a culture without a nod to their cuisine.

            “Tell me what you eat, and I’ll tell you who you are.” – Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin (1825).

            Don’t believe me? Here’s why food is the best way to understand a culture:

            Food is a universal necessity.

            It doesn’t matter where in the world you’re from – you have to eat. And your societal culture most likely evolved from that very need, the need to eat. Once they ventured beyond hunting and gathering, many early civilizations organized themselves in ways that facilitated food distribution and production. That also meant that the animals, land and resources you were near dictated not only what you’d consume, but how you’d prepare and cook it. The establishment of the spice trade and the merchant silk road are two example of the great lengths many took to obtain desirable ingredients.

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            Food preservation techniques are unique to climates and lifestyle.

            Ever wonder why the process to preserve meat is so different around the world? It has to do with local resources, needs, and climates. In Morocco, Khlea is a dish composed of dried beef preserved in spices and then packed in animal fat. When preserved correctly, it’s still good for two years when stored at room temperature. That makes a lot of sense in Morocco, where the country historically has had a strong nomadic population, desert landscape, and extremely warm, dry temperatures.

            Staples of a local cuisines illustrate historical eating patterns.

            Some societies have cuisines that are entirely based on meat, and others are almost entirely plant-based. Some have seasonal variety and their cuisines change accordingly during different parts of the year. India’s cuisine is extremely varied from region to region, with meat and wheat heavy dishes in the far north, to spectacular fish delicacies in the east, to rice-based vegetarian diets in the south, and many more variations in between.

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            The western part of India is home to a group of strict vegetarians: they not only avoid flesh and eggs, but even certain strong aromatics like garlic, or root vegetables like carrots and potatoes. Dishes like Papri Chat, featuring vegetable based chutneys mixed with yoghurt, herbs and spices are popular.

            Components of popular dishes can reveal cultural secrets.

            This is probably the most intriguing part of studying a specific cuisine. Certain regions of the world have certain ingredients easily available to them. Most people know that common foods such as corn, tomatoes, chili peppers, and chocolate are native to the Americas, or “New World”. Many of today’s chefs consider themselves to be extremely modern when fusing cuisines, but cultural lines blended long ago when it comes to purity of ingredients.

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            Black pepper originated in Asia but became, and still remains, a critical part of European cuisine. The Belgians are some of the finest chocolatiers, despite it not being native to the old world. And perhaps one of the most interesting result from the blending of two cuisines is Chicken Tikka Masala; it resembles an Indian Mughali dish, but was actually invented by the British!

            Food tourism – it’s a whole new way to travel.

            Some people have taken the intergation of food and culture to a new level. No trip they take is complete with out a well-researched meal plan, that dictates not only the time of year for their visit, but also how they will experience a new culture.

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            So, a food tourist won’t just focus on having a pint at Oktoberfest, but will be interested in learning the German beer making process, and possibly how they can make their own fresh brew. Food tourists visit many of the popular mainstays for traditional tourism, like New York City, San Francisco, London, or Paris, but many locations that they frequent, such as Armenia or Laos, may be off the beaten path for most travelers. And since their interest in food is more than meal deep, they have the chance to learn local preparation techniques that can shed insight into a whole other aspect of a particular region’s culture.

            Featured photo credit: Young Shih via unsplash.com

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