Hello and welcome to today’s edition of Cooking with Fey! Today I thought we would cover an iconic fitness fruit you commonly see in gym bags or on websites telling you to eat better- the portable banana!
Dainty bananas are a popular addition to any nutrition site or fitness regimen because of their nutritional benefits and portability. I mean, they already have a travel friendly wrapper included! But bananas are more than just the lazy person’s travel food, they also have health benefits to add to your diet such as: protecting our heart, strengthening our bones and boosting our mood. These health benefits are wonderful for those of us with Atrial Fibrillation,as we can use all the help we can get to help our hearts function better and safer.
Bananas also contain these helpful nutrients:
- Vitamin C
- Tryptophan (an amino acid)
As you may know, bananas are a fantastic source of Vitamin C, which is an important nutrient linked to immune system health. Having a strong immune system helps the body ward off illness or recover faster from sickness.
Vitamin C is also great for the heart. In a research study published by the Harvard School of Public Health,the diets of 126,399 adults were examined over the course of many years to reveal that for every serving of fruits and vegetables a person consumed, there was a 4% reduction in their risk of developing coronary heart disease. The study also pointed out that leafy green vegetables, and foods high in Vitamin C, had the largest positive impact.
Meanwhile, potassium helps the body maintain a normal blood pressure and nerve function. This means that bananas can help the nervous system regulate muscle movements more effectively. This is important for weightlifters such as myself, as it maximizes all that hard work we put in at the gym each week.
The potassium and vitamin C in bananas also combine to protect our heart. Heart health is important for me since I live with Atrial Fibrillation. So when I read studies like the one from Vanderbilt Medical School stating that a daily intake of potassium can lower the risk of developing heart disease, I definitely made sure to start eating bananas so my own heart condition doesn’t worsen.
Magnesium works with Potassium for bone health in the body. Potassium works hard to protect us against osteoporosis and Magnesium is a powerhouse for bone formation. These two minerals combine to ensure that our bones are strong for the long run.
Boost your mood with the amino acid Tryptophan! Science is showing that tryptophan may help prevent cognitive decline and boost our moods. While more research needs to be done in this area to uncover how much of an impact bananas and amino acids can have on our moods, it can’t hurt to munch on a banana the next time you are feeling grouchy!