Bananas are a widely available, affordable and versatile fruit. You can just eat one on the go, add some peanut butter, or use it in a smoothie for a boost of energy and a creamier texture.
But are bananas helpful for weight loss?
A crucial component of any weight loss is understanding that no single food has the power to make you gain or lose weight.
The balance of what you eat throughout the day, along with how active you are, will have the greatest impact on your weight loss, especially in the long term.
Some foods, such as those that are high in fiber or high in protein, will make you feel full longer, with a smaller number of calories. Thus, when you consume fewer calories by incorporating more fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean protein into your diet, these dietary habits will favor your weight loss.
A medium banana offers about 105 calories, which provides fruits’ natural sugar, as well as 3 grams of fiber (A quick rule of thumb is that one serving of carbohydrates should provide at least 3 grams of fiber). As you probably know, bananas are also a good source of vitamins, such as potassium. Like most fruits, bananas are not a source of fat or protein, just carbohydrates.
When compared with other fruits, like berries, bananas are higher in energy (calories), which gives them a bad reputation of not being “good” for weight loss. However, as the recommendation for a balanced diet includes 3 to 5 servings of fruit every day, bananas can certainly be incorporated into a healthy diet, even if the goal is to lose weight.
Bananas are filling, nutritious, and can be paired with a variety of other foods for a more complete snack. They also make a good dessert.
A balanced diet, full of fruits and vegetables, as well as a good relationship with food, can make a bigger impact on weight maintenance than to completely stop eating certain foods in order to lose weight. Balance is a crucial part of any diet. Although bananas are an excellent fruit, consuming multiple bananas a day will most likely keep you from adding more variety into your diet, such as other macronutrients, including proteins and healthy fats.
Bariatric patients are able to incorporate bananas and other fruits back into their diet at five to six weeks after surgery, as the stomach needs to slowly regain the strength to digest fibrous foods.