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Bananas Improve Digestive Health and Lower Blood Pressure

Posted by SoundHealth on Monday, April 11, 2011
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Bananas are the ultimate natural fast food - they are packed with nutrients and have the ability to soothe and heal the digestive system, lift your mood and reduce high blood pressure - all in a convenient package that is easy to eat on the go.

Bananas are the best known tropical fruit and contain "moderate-releasing" sugars that provide an energy boost. They also contain high levels of B-vitamins, which the body needs to produce energy. These include vitamin B5, which aids the formation of the immune system's killer cells, and B6, which improves the body's ability to clear away waste matter.

Bananas are also a good source of immunity-enhancing Vitamin C, and contain manganese, which work with this vitamin to produce the virus-fighting substance interferon.

Bananas are dense in fiber and in potassium, which regulates body fluids and nerve function. Their high potassium content is also associated with reducing blood pressure and preventing harmful cholesterol from building up in the arteries.

Bananas are Beneficial for Digestion

Compared to complex starches, the carbohydrates in bananas are easily broken down into energy for your cells. The fiber found in ripe bananas is also very easily digestible, so it is useful in the treatment of both constipation and diarrhea. Adding easy to digest foods to your diet eases digestive strain and improved gut health.

Bananas are a rich source of fructooligosaccharides, a prebiotic that feeds friendly bacteria in the digestive system. Prebiotics are crucial for improving the balance of gut flora in the digestive tract, because they help to feed probiotic, or "good" bacteria found in the colon. When these beneficial bacteria are fed well with prebiotics, they produce vitamins and enzymes that improve our ability to absorb nutrients, plus compounds that protect us against unfriendly microorganisms. Eating bananas are one of the easiest ways to include more prebiotics in your diet.

Bananas Lower blood pressure and Reduce stroke Risk

Regularly eating bananas - up to three times a day - has been found to provide enough potassium to reduce the chances of suffering a blood clot on the brain by around 21 per cent, according to recent findings.

The research found that consumption of bananas and other potassium-rich foods such as spinach, nuts, milk, fish and lentils play a role in controlling blood pressure and preventing strokes.

Strokes are usually caused when a clot forms and blocks the blood supply to the brain. High blood pressure is the single biggest risk factor for stroke, and other research has also indicated that potassium could help to lower blood pressure.

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