Whether or not you like them, bananas are great. They are full of nutrients like fiber, potassium, good carbohydrates, Vitamin C and many more important vitamins and minerals. They are a breakfast staple in almost every household as it gives you instant energy to kick-start your day. You may have often been advised to eat bananas to gain weight but you may have also heard that bananas are great for weight loss. Confused? Does eating bananas help you gain or lose weight? We have all the answers you’re seeking right here.
Yes, it is true that bananas are loaded with carbohydrates that you are often told to limit or not avoid in order to lose weight. But bananas contain the good carbohydrates in the form of the resistant starch – the kind that supports both weight loss and weight maintenance. Moreover, they are packed with fiber that keeps you full for longer and are also low in calories.
Although high in carbohydrates, bananas have a low to medium glycemic index and therefore they do not cause sudden spikes in the blood sugar levels as compared to other high-carb foods and so, keep you metabolic rate in control. By keeping your blood sugar levels and metabolic rate in control, your body will burn more fat for energy. But these are just the basics and the confusion still lingers – are bananas good to gain weight or to lose weight?
High in carbohydrates, bananas have a low to medium glycemic index. Photo Credit: Istock
According to Dr. Sunali Sharma, Dietician & Nutritionist, Amandeep Hospitals, “Bananas are full of nutrients and energy, and are a great source of essential minerals and vitamins. Bananas do not make you lose or gain weight by themselves. The combinations in which you take, the timing and the way you consume bananas contributes to the weight management.”
How to Eat Bananas to Lose Weight
Dr. Sharma tells us, “A medium banana contains just 105 calories, 27 grams of carbohydrates, 3 grams of satiating fiber and about 14 grams of naturally occurring sugar along with a host of essential micro-nutrients. The fruit boosts your metabolism and keeps you full longer preventing you from snacking in between meals.”
A medium banana contains just 105 calories. Photo Credit: Istock.
As compared to other fruits, banana contains slightly more calories and carbohydrates. So, in order to incorporate bananas in your weight loss diet, Dr. Sharma suggests some ground rules:
1. Limit your consumption to one 5” piece a day.
2. The perfect time to have a banana is pre or post-workout as a snack. It helps in boosting your stamina and also in recovery.
3. Use them to tame bloating that some diets tend to cause. The potassium bananas helps reduce water retention which aids weight loss.
Bananas can be eaten to lose weight in a healthy way as they don’t make you starve or bring your energy levels down.
How to Eat Bananas to Gain Weight
Bananas are often one of the fruits that we resort to when we are trying to gain weight. They are high in good carbohydrates and may help you gain weight when consumed in certain ways. “The best way is to use them in a milkshake. Add lots of nuts, milk and other fruits to make a power packed shake. Another way is to combine it with yogurt and make smoothies. These banana smoothies and shakes can help you gain weight effectively without consuming unhealthy, empty calories. The nutritional value of these recipes is high and the weight gain happens in a healthy manner,” suggests Dr. Sunali Sharma.
So, for whatever purpose you choose to, don’t forget to add this wonder fruit to your daily diet. It is an all-rounder and provides some super benefits for your overall health and well-being.