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Bananas - Brilliant or Just a Bit Bendy?

Bananas have become a staple. Many eat them every day. 

But they are high sugar hybrids best as an occasional treat not a daily nutritional foundation.

 

The sugar

Now, the 5 a day concept has been damaging.  Many are eating too much fruit believing that they are eating healthily but are not! just because sugar is natural does not make it innocent! Ok in small doses, but far from ideal in excess.  And smoothies are even worse with an insance glyceamic load, especially for diabetics.  Pack in the green vegetables, use fruit as an occasional treat.


The potassium

Often said to be best for potassium, they are fairly average really.  You get MUCH more potassium in green veggies than bananas, and much broader benefits too. Bananas are big business, and a huge marketing campaign went into them in the past, so they have been very successful in terms of the potassium message, but most definitely not the best choice for this vital mineral. Read more about the Potassium problem

 

The hybrid issue

Man has interfered extensively with bananas. Over the years the banana has been selectively developed.  It would be hard to say it is still truly a natural food even.  Orginally it was a mix of two species  - Musa acuminata and Musa balbisiana. Neither were that great to eat, one being full of seeds, and the other just didnt taste nice. Crossing these two occasionally produced a badly bred banana in one sense, a genetic mutation, but the fruit turned out to taste quite nice, and being infertile, there were no seeds. They had the added benefit of being quite a funny shaped and amusing fruit! Over hundreds of years, this process has continued until today and we now have the modern banana we all know so well.  It is probably the original GM food!


The Future is GM

The nature of the sterile banana seems to be why it is so prone to pests, and they are very prone to disease that can spread wildly in a plantation.  This used to happen frequently until the 50s when the cavendish variety was developed which has so far proven to be more stable but is known to still be under a fairly serious threat.  Bananas are big business so it's no great surprise that scientists are beavering away with bananas and more GM varities.  GM is personal choice.  But for us, we like all foods to be natural, so it's not for us!

So in short, if you love bananas, enjoy them occasionally not every day!

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