Bananas are classified as both a fruit and an herb, and come in other colors besides the common yellow-skinned variety including green (often referred to as ‘plantains’), red, brown and purple.
Native to Australia and Malaysia, it is believed the banana was first cultivated in Papua New Guinea. The word ‘banana’ is thought to be of West African origin.
The archaeological record of the banana dates back as far as 10,000 years. Today, most American bananas come to us from the plantations of the Chiquita and Dole companies.
Bananas are the third most widely consumed food in the world. Research into the health benefits of bananas is in its early stages, focused on bioflavonoids and their wide-ranging disease-fighting properties involving the heart, kidneys, digestion, ulcers, vision and bones.
While bananas are one of the higher calorie fruits, they are also rich in simple sugars (from which they derive most of their calories) for high energy, as well as a wide array of vitamins and minerals.
Bananas are abundant in fiber and low in sodium. They contain a range of B-complex compounds as well as vitamin C, and poly-phenolic antioxidants such as lutein, zeaxanthin, and alpha- and beta-carotenes. Bananas are rich in potassium, magnesium, copper and manganese with trace amounts of calcium, protein and iron.
Antioxidants in bananas help rid the body of harmful free radicals and ‘oxidative stress.’ Potassium in particular is what bananas are most commonly known for. This mineral is key to a healthy heart and helps counteract the harmful effects of too much salt in our diet. The fiber in bananas assists the body in ridding itself of harmful toxins.
Ingredients Banana Juice Recipe
- 1 Banana
- 1 Apple
- 5 Mango Chunks
- 1 handful of Pomegranate Seeds
- 2 Carrots
- 2 Handfuls of Spinach
- 2 Celery Stalks
- 1 Cucumber
- This is my favorite banana juice because the banana flavor is not overpowering and it’s an energy drink without caffeine!
- This recipe is great as a smoothie, too!
- Banana usually clogs non-commercial juice machines so I blend the banana in my kitchen blender or Cuisinart and then add it to the rest of the juiced ingredients.
- Remember to juice the skin of the cuke, carrot, apple and mango – they’re full of nutrients!