Often recommended as workout snack even though they've won a poor reputation as non-diet friendly fruits, bananas are low in glycemic index, initiate fat burning, are excellent for digestion, and have large amounts of ‘insoluble resistance starch’. Eat them in your breakfast or as a pre-gym snack - bananas are a storehouse of goodness. Today we have Strength and Fitness coach - Arnav Sarkar and Reebok Master Trainer - Vinata Shetty tell us why bananas are excellent for weight loss.
Are bananas a natural weight loss food?
Arnav Sarkar: Bananas are part of a healthy diet, and should also be part of a fat loss diet, however no food by itself helps one to lose weight. To lose weight one has to create a caloric deficit i.e to burn more calories than what they consume in a day. For most cases a caloric deficit of 10-15% works best and ones that create a greater caloric deficit generally causes more muscle loss rather than fat loss.
Vinata Shetty: Banana is a nutritionally dense food rich in carbohydrates, fiber, vitamins and minerals and energy. As with all foods, one should consume bananas within the required calorie intake. A 100 gms of banana contain about 90 calories.
What are the vital nutrients/minerals present in banana which makes it a super food?
Arnav Sarkar: For starters bananas offer healthy carbs which give energy to be more active and feel great. It is also high in the mineral potassium which helps to lower blood pressure. The fiber content of bananas helps to control hunger much better for those who are trying to lose fat. And it has also been found to help students study better thanks to its supply of the vitamin B6. Some more benefits of bananas - It has been found to help reduce depression due to its content of Tryptophan, the iron content in it helps those with anemia and it also helps to reduce constipation due to its fiber content.
Can bananas be my ideal pre-gym snack?
Arnav Sarkar: Yes. The natural sugars contained within the banana help provide a lot of energy before a workout. This is the reason why it is a huge favorite of serious athletes.
Vinata Shetty: Yes, as it packs a lot of energy. It also has adequate carbohydrates to provide the fuel required for the physical activity.
Is it okay to eat bananas for my breakfast? Which other foods should I ideally eat with bananas?
Arnav Sarkar: Breakfast is a great time to have a piece of fruit, and banana is a great option. For a good and complete breakfast pair the banana with some oats, almonds, milk and egg.
Vinata Shetty: Bananas can be had as breakfast. They can be paired with skimmed milk as in a milkshake or yoghurt.
Do you support the Morning Banana Diet?
Arnav Sarkar: When compared to a breakfast of donuts and sugary coffee, the morning banana diet is definitely a healthier option for weight loss, but surely not the best one. One does not need to restrict to only bananas, most other fruits will work well too.
Vinata Shetty: Yes, as it provides a lot of nutrients, minerals (calcium, iron, potassium. magnesium etc) and energy. So a great way to kick-start your day and keep you going.
*Image courtesy: © Thinkstock photos/ Getty Images
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