espite their very short shelf life, bananas are one of the most popular fruits worldwide. In fact, they are the 4th most valuable crop globally and are grown in at least 107 countries. With a sweet taste and pretty near perfect natural serving size, bananas make a great snack or addition to a healthy meal. They also go great with ice cream, just sayin’.
You already know that bananas are an incredibly healthy food. They are chock full of potassium, fiber, vitamin C, and B6, among other nutrients. Even the relatively high concentration of sugar (about 14 g per banana) is mitigated by the fiber, which evens out the rate at which that sugar hits your bloodstream. Eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables has been shown to reduce the risk of many scary diseases, including cancer, heart disease, and diabetes.
But when it comes to bananas, can there be too much of a good thing? Stick with us to find out what would happen if you ate two bananas every single day. The news is mostly good, but there are some surprising warnings you need to hear.
And maybe this goes without saying, but we are going to recommend that you go light on the ice cream…
1. Two Bananas – makes a big dent in your daily RDI of potassium
Potassium plays several vitals roles in our bodies. It is used by every cell you have to generate the electrical charge needed for life processes. Potassium is also involved in regulating blood pressure, steadying your heart rate, and triggering insulin release. In partnership with sodium, potassium also works to control fluid levels in your body.
Despite its importance, many of us don’t get enough potassium on a daily basis. The RDA for potassium in healthy adults is in the range of 3,500-4,700mg per day, your actual needs being determined by lifestyle and other factors. Two average-sized bananas will net you about 900 mg of potassium, which is a solid start but does not get you all the way there. Additional sources of potassium include potatoes (white and sweet), watermelon, spinach, beets, white beans, and tomato sauce.
2. Two Bananas – helps maintain a healthy blood pressure
It is a balance of sodium and potassium that your kidneys use to control blood pressure by adjusting the level of fluid stored in your body in response to external and internal demands. Unfortunately, many of us get way too much sodium in our diets and not nearly enough potassium. That can drive blood pressure up to an unhealthy level.
On average, fewer than 2% of US adults meet their daily RDI for potassium, but if you commit to eating two bananas each day, your risk of hypertension will be significantly lowered.
3. Two Bananas – lowers your cancer risk</strong>
Fruits and vegetables are a great way to lower your lifetime cancer risk because they offer the critical vitamins and minerals you need without added salt, sugar, and chemical preservatives (but watch out for pesticide residue on non-organic produce).
Bananas have the added benefit of being high in vitamin C, one of the most powerful antioxidants around. Antioxidants are able to bind with and neutralize cancer-causing free radicals; the fiber content of bananas is also known to reduce your risk of colorectal cancer specifically.