Plantains may look like bananas, and they’re a type of banana, but they have an entirely different flavor that fans of sweets will appreciate. A plantain has a thicker peel, tends to be bigger than a banana, and is best served fried. They also have a variety of health benefits.
The fruit contains more than 15 vitamins, minerals and other nutrients needed for optimal health. There are numerous reasons why the fruit can be a healthy addition to anyone’s diet.
The mineral iron and vitamin B6 are essential for the creation and health of red blood cells needed to prevent anemia. Iron and vitamin B6 are also used to treat the autoimmune disease neuritis, characterized by pain and nerve inflammation. Iron promotes the health of red blood cells that distribute oxygen throughout the body.
Antioxidants help the body neutralize free radicals in the body that cause the signs of aging. Free radicals damage the body at the cellular level. The vitamin C in plantains is a powerful antioxidant. The fruit also has vitamin B6 that works with vitamin C for skin protection and brain development.
- Bones, Teeth
The nutrient calcium is responsible for bone and tooth strength, along with nails and muscles. Plantains are high in calcium.
Carbs provide energy to fuel the body in its daily activities. The complex carbohydrates in plantains take longer to digest so blood glucose levels rise slower and don’t cause glucose levels to immediately spike. Since the carbs are absorbed more slowly, they make people feel fuller longer.
The fiber content in plantains is beneficial for digestive health. The fruit aids in preventing bloating, bowel irritation and constipation. The manganese, potassium and leucocyanidin in plantains increase mucus production, which is beneficial for those with stomach ulcers. The vitamin A and C content contribute to a healthy immune system that begins in the gut.
Plantains contain potassium that aids the body in maintaining normal fluid levels and blood pressure.
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