The nutritional benefits of bananas cannot be underestimated, but if you are someone keen on getting established on a keto diet and you love bananas, then you may want to hold back until you read this. This is because bananas have a lot of wonderful nutrients, but on the other hand, they are also high in carbohydrates and it is amongst the foods you will naturally want to avoid if you are keen on achieving the state of ketosis. This is not to imply that bananas should be completely avoided for those following keto diets, but you must be very watchful on the amount you consume.
Banana nutritional stats
Here is a brief look about the nutritional elements of a banana-:
- Calories – 105
- Carbohydrates – 27 grams
- Proteins – 1 gram
- Saturated fats – 0g
- Fiber – 3 grams
- Sugar – 14 grams
- Potassium – 422 milligrams
- Vitamin C – 10.3 milligrams
- Magnesium – 32 milligrams
- Vitamin B6 – 0.433 milligrams
Bananas and keto dieting
With an average carbohydrates content of 27 grams, bananas are evidently not a good choice if you are observing a keto diet. For most people on keto diets, the daily carbs requirements ranges between 20 grams and 40 grams and it means that if you take just a single banana, then you are likely to get all your carb allotment from that.
When this is added with other carb sources for such a diet, you can easily exceed the recommended daily carbs requirements, and achieving ketosis will thus be difficult. In simple terms, bananas may not be the ideal fruit when it comes to ketogenic diet options, though it comes with magnificent health benefits which makes it a great fruit for the overall health for those who are not keen on ketosis.
The other aspects worth exploring about bananas and keto dieting, and why it may not be a very good idea to take lots of bananas when you want to maintain ketosis, is its high sugar content. Bananas have a lot of fructose, and every time you eat it, the fructose will go directly to the liver where they will increase the supply of glycogen.
As you already know, for the body to be in ketosis, then it must stop relying on the use of glucose in the production of energy and instead turn to the stored fats as the primary source of energy. For this to happen, however, all the glucose deposits in the body has to be depleted. With the eating of a banana, there will be more sugar available to the body and this will automatically stop ketosis.
If you would like to check and see if your body is in ketosis, you should strongly consider the idea of picking up a ketone breath meter. This can be one of the best ways to check your body and see if you are still in a state of ketosis.
The health benefits of bananas
All the vitamins and the nutrients you get from bananas have incredible roles in the body and they are also beneficial for the proper functioning of the mind. They include but not limited to the following-:
Lower blood pressure – bananas are rich in magnesium and potassium and these are vital in regulating the blood pressure.
Healthy heart – the blood pressure lowering effects of bananas leads to reduced chances of suffering from a myriad of heart conditions, including stroke.
Stronger bones – potassium is necessary for the development of strong bones and banana provides a very good doze of potassium. As such, they not only nourish the health of the bones, but also help in offering protection against bone conditions such as osteoporosis. This is a condition that comes with age, but could be easily mitigated if the intake of potassium is maintained at healthy levels.
Good digestion – being a rich source of fiber, bananas aids in the digestion process as fibers are always essential for the process. Bananas can provide up to 12% of the body’s daily need of fibers.
A sharper mind – vitamin B6 found in bananas helps to prevent cognitive decline thus aiding in having sharper mind. Additionally, the vitamin in reducing mood related symptoms such as PMS.
Helps fight anemia – bananas are rich in iron, making them a must-have fruit for those suffering from anemia. Anemia is a condition caused when then the number of red blood cells in the body goes down or when there is a reduction of the hemoglobin in the blood. It is a condition that can lead to paleness, shortness of breath, and fatigue amongst other side effects.
Green bananas and keto
All the nutritional facts provided above relate to ripe or yellow bananas. There is a lot of differences in the nutritional content of green and yellow bananas and a lot of questions always arise if green bananas may be good for people on ketogenic diets.
The first thing to note about green bananas is that they are very high in resistant starch. This implies that they are very low on the glycemic index, to further mean that they do not spike insulin very much, as opposed to yellow bananas which are low on resistant starch and has high glycemic index, thus are very susceptible to spiking insulin in the body to throw you out of keto. The glycemic index of green bananas is between 40 and 60 while that of yellow banana is between 110 and 130.
If you are on keto diet, therefore, and you are interested in taking green bananas, then you ought to take them raw. When they are cooked, their resistant starch goes down significantly, leading to high glycemic index and this will cause the same effects as eating a ripe yellow banana.
But there is still a catch with eating raw bananas when you are on keto diet. One medium sized green banana contains about 27 grams of carbohydrates but on a keto plan, you will want to keep your carbs between 20 grams and 50 grams a day.
Though the 27grams for a green banana falls in the middle, you should realize that you will be consuming other carbs as well and it is important to factor that so that you don’t exceed your recommended intake, which for most people is pegged at 30. Therefore, if you have to eat banana and still maintain ketosis, then you must be sure to take them in very small amounts, whether ripe or raw.