Bananas are the leading fruit produced and consumed globally, and are an important source of carbohydrate energy, potassium, vitamin B6, vitamin C, and other micronutrients.[1]

Healing Properties

  • Anti-Inflammatory: Ingesting Bananas and Water before an exercise bout, helps attenuate the post-exercise increase in oxidized linoleic acid metabolites.[2]
    • Inflammatory processes are elevated during recovery from intensive and long-duration exercise.[2]
    • Carbohydrate intake, such as that from bananas, help provide enhanced glucose availability to the working muscles, resulting in reduced post-exercise cortisol and epinephrine levels, decreased leukocytosis and phagocytosis, and lower inflammatory cytokines.[2]
    • Reduces reliance on glycolysis for ATP production.[2]

Disease / Symptom Treatment

  • Diabetes: Reduces reliance on glycolysis for ATP production.[2]

Sources

  1. Title: Metabolic recovery from heavy exertion following banana compared to sugar beverage or water only ingestion: A randomized, crossover trial
    Author(s): David C. Nieman, Nicholas D. Gillitt, Wei Sha, Debora Esposito, Sivapriya Ramamoorthy, and Stephen L Atkin
    Institution(s): Human Performance Laboratory, Appalachian State University, North Carolina Research Campus, Kannapolis, North Carolina, United States of America; Dole Nutrition Research Laboratory, North Carolina Research Campus, Kannapolis, North Carolina, United States of America; Bioinformatics Services Division, University of North Carolina at Charlotte, North Carolina Research Campus, Kannapolis, North Carolina, United States of America; Plants for Human Health Institute, North Carolina State University, North Carolina Research Campus, Kannapolis, North Carolina, United States of America; Metabolon, Inc., Durham, North Carolina, United States of America; Weill Cornell Medical College Qatar, QATAR
    Publication: PLOS ONE
    Date: 2018 Mar 22
    Abstract: Carbohydrate ingestion from bananas or a sugar beverage had a comparable influence in attenuating metabolic perturbation and inflammation following 75-km cycling. Ex-vivo analysis with THP-1 monocytes supported a decrease in COX-2 mRNA expression and reduced reliance on glycolysis for ATP production following ingestion of bananas but not sugar water when compared to water alone.
    Link: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5864065/
    Citations:

  2. Title: Influence of Carbohydrate Ingestion from Bananas or Sugar Beverage on 9- and 13-Hydroxy-octadecadienoic acids (9 + 13 HODE) During Recovery from 75-km Cycling
    Author(s): David C. Nieman, Nicholas D. Gillitt, Kevin J. Knagge, Huiyuan Chen, Courtney L. Goodman, Christopher R. Capps, Zachary L. Shue, and Nicole Heyl
    Institution(s): Appalachian State University, Kannapolis, NC; Dole Nutrition Research Laboratory, Kannapolis, NC; David H. Murdock Research Institute, Kannapolis, NC
    Publication: The Federation Of American Societies for Experimental Biology Journal
    Date: 1 Apr 2017
    Abstract: Linoleic acid, an essential polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA), is the direct precursor to oxidized linoleic acid metabolites (OXLAMs) including 9- and 13-hydroxy-octadecadienoic acid (9 + 13 HODE). 9 + 13 HODE are stable and abundant oxidation products in plasma, play a role in the regulation of inflammatory processes, and are elevated during recovery from intensive and long-duration exercise. Carbohydrate intake has multiple benefits for the exercising athlete, including enhanced glucose availability to the working muscle, resulting in reduced post-exercise cortisol and epinephrine levels, decreased leukocytosis and phagocytosis, and lower inflammatory cytokines. The effect of carbohydrate intake on post-exercise HODEs is unknown, and the purpose of this study was to compare ingestion of Cavendish bananas with an equicaloric, sugar-only beverage or water alone on plasma 9 + 13 HODE levels during recovery from an intensive 75-km cycling bout (183.9±5.8 min across all trials). Participants included 16 male and female cyclists (age 39.9±2.4 years) who regularly competed in road races and were capable of cycling 75-km at race pace. This study utilized a randomized crossover approach, and participants engaged in three 75-km cycling time trials while ingesting water only, bananas and water, and a 6% sugar beverage in an overnight fasted state, with data analyzed using a repeated measures analysis of variance (ANOVA), within subjects approach. Before the exercise bout, participants ingested 5 ml/kg water alone, or the 6% sugar beverage or Cavendish banana (with water) adjusted to quantities providing 0.4 g carbohydrate per kilogram of body weight (g carb/kg). During the cycling bout, water was ingested at a rate of 3 ml/kg every 15 minutes, with carbohydrate intake from the 6% sugar beverage and banana adjusted to 0.2 g carb/kg every 15 minutes. Blood samples were collected pre- and post-exercise, and then at 1.5 h and 21 h post-exercise. Detection of plasma 9 + 13 HODE was conducted on an UPLC system coupled with Quattro Premier XE MS (Waters, Milford, MA) operated in electrospray ionization (ESI) negative mode. The overall pattern of change in 9 + 13 HODE was significantly different between treatment trials (interaction p-value <0.05), with 94%, 63%, and 72% increases immediately post-exercise, and 22%, 4.2%, and 6.8% increases 1.5 h post-exercise in the water alone, banana, and sugar beverage trials, respectively. Plasma 9 + 13 HODE was back to pre-exercise levels in all trials by the next morning (21 h post-exercise). In conclusion, these data indicate that carbohydrate ingestion from bananas with water or a 6% sugar beverage compared to water alone attenuates the post-exercise increase in plasma 9 + 13 HODE following 75-km of intensive cycling in overnight fasted athletes.
    Link: https://www.fasebj.org/doi/abs/10.1096/fasebj.31.1_supplement.317.1
    Citations: