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Banana Diet: What Happens When You Only Eat Bananas

banana diet
Photo: CC0 Public Domain / Pexels - Couleur

Can you lose weight with a banana diet? And how effective is it? We’ll explain how the delicious fruit can help you lose weight and what you should remember when starting the banana diet. 

How Do Bananas Help You Lose Weight?

morning banana diet
Eating bananas before they’re fully ripened has several nutritional benefits. (Photo: CC0 Public Domain / Pexels - Scott Webb )

Bananas contain a relatively large amount of natural sugar, but they contain no fat and no cholesterol. Instead, they are packed with vitamin B, magnesium and potassium.

  • Fructose: Due to their high fructose content, bananas are considered fast energy suppliers.
  • Magnesium and potassium: Both nutrients are important for your muscles, and they strengthen your bones and teeth.
  • Vitamin B6: This vitamin stimulates the metabolism and boosts the immune system.

According to the USDA, 100 grams of raw banana have the following nutritional values:

  • Energy: 89 kcal
  • Fat: 0.33g
  • Carbohydrates: 22.84g (12.23g of which are sugar)
  • Protein: 1.09g
  • Dietary fiber: 2.6g

How the Banana Diet Works

For this diet, it’s important that you choose green, unripe bananas. They contain resistant starch that keeps blood sugar levels low, accelerating fat burning. These are the basic concepts of the banana diet:

  • The idea behind the banana diet is that you eat bananas instead of your normal breakfast (that’s why it’s also called the morning banana diet), as well as for snacks throughout the day. 
  • For breakfast, eat as many bananas as you want until you are full. Drinking water helps to stimulate digestion.
  • For lunch, have a light meal — there aren’t any specific rules. However, it’s best to avoid fatty foods, as they counteract the desired effect of the diet.
  • If you get hungry in the afternoon, go back to bananas. At this point, consciously avoid sugary snacks.
  • Eat whatever you want for dinner. Just be sure to eat it early enough, so you have at least 4 hours between eating and going to bed.

Tip: As with any diet, the banana diet requires you to get plenty of regular exercises and a good night’s sleep.

How Effective is the Banana Diet?

diet and exercise
Regular exercise and a balanced diet are your best bet for sustainable weight loss. (Photo: CC0 Public Domain / Pexels - Karolina Grabowska )

Bananas don’t contain any fat, but they contain a relatively high proportion of fructose. Their sweetness makes them the perfect healthy replacement for sugary snacks.

However, as with many other diets, the banana diet can quickly lead to nutritional deficiencies if you don’t pay careful attention. Therefore, it is important not to stick to this diet for more than three weeks at first.

It is also important to be aware of the ecological impact bananas have. Grown in South America, bananas have a long way to travel before they reach the US. Bananas are often treated with synthetic chemical pesticides, which have negative effects on workers’ health. This is why it is best to purchase Fairtrade whenever possible.

It is advantageous to exercise regularly and maintain a balanced diet instead of trying crash diets. A healthy lifestyle is more sustainable and can lead to your desired weight in the long run.

This article was originally published by Chantal Gilbrich.

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