Can you eat banana peels?
In this brief article, we will answer the question “can you eat banana peels?”. We will also discuss the potential health benefits and risks of eating banana peels.
Can you eat banana peels?
Yes, you can eat banana peels. But they are not consumed by many people. Most people have tasted the banana’s delicious flesh, but few have tried the peel. Banana peel, which some may find repulsive, is actually a staple in many different cuisines (1).
Bananas are loved in every corner of the globe for their sweet, mushy flesh. On the other hand, their fibrous peels are not widely consumed as a food source. Banana peels, however, are not only edible but also beneficial for your health, contrary to popular belief (2).
Eating banana peels is good for you and the planet. You can help reduce food waste by eating the peels instead of throwing them away ().
In what ways can banana peels be utilized?
The rind of a banana can be used to create a nutritious and tasty dessert. While the flesh of a banana is mild and sugary, the peel is tough and sour (1,2).
Bananas with a more developed ripeness have a more pleasant flavor and a more tender peel. Banana peels can be prepared in a variety of ways to enhance their flavor (1,2,3,4):
- Smoothies are blended drinks made from various fruits and vegetables.
- Caramelized and deep-fried for use as a dessert topping.
- Pastry flavored with sugar and cinnamon.
- Banana peels can be boiled and can be consumed.
- Used in place of regular vinegar in salads after being transformed into banana vinegar.
- Served with meat.
What are the possible health benefits of banana peels?
Possible health benefits of banana peels include the following (1,2,3):
- The high rates of tryptophan found in bananas, when combined with the high levels of vitamin B6 found in the peels of bananas, can help alleviate some of the symptoms of depression and mood disorders.
When tryptophan is broken down, it produces serotonin, which has been shown to elevate mood. Better sleep, brought on by vitamin B6, has a cumulatively good effect on one’s disposition.
- Banana peels, which are high in fiber, can help the digestive system function normally, reducing the risk of both diarrhea and constipation. Those who suffer from irritable bowel syndrome or Crohn’s disease may find this particular benefit of banana peels important.
- Vitamin A is important for maintaining healthy eyes. Banana peels and bananas are rich sources of this vitamin.
- Banana peels are loaded with cancer-fighting antioxidants such as carotenoids, polyphenols, and other types of antioxidants that fight the free – radicals that cause cancer. To boost your antioxidant levels and lower your cancer risk, eat the most banana peels, especially the green, unripe ones.
What type of nutrients are present in banana peel?
The nutrients in banana peels can vary depending on a number of factors. Bananas, on the other hand, have easily accessible nutrients per serving. One medium-sized banana has the following nutritional value (1,5):
- Number of Calories: 105
- There are no fat calories in a banana
- The amount of carbohydrates in this dish is 27 grams.
- Fourteen grams of sugar
- Three grams of fiber
- With respect to protein, there is 1 gram.
In addition to being an excellent source of energy, potassium, magnesium, and fiber, bananas are also a good source of:
- Vitality-boosting vitamin A
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin B6 can be found in the banana peels themselves.
- B12 vitamin
In particular, studies have shown that protein fiber helps maintain regular bowel movements, maintains normal blood sugar levels, and improves heart health. Also, potassium is beneficial for keeping blood pressure in check, protecting bones, and decreasing the likelihood of developing kidney stones (1,5).
- Unripe banana peels were found to have the highest concentration of antioxidants in a test tube study.
- Antioxidants have been linked in some studies to lowering inflammation and protecting against chronic diseases like diabetes, cancer, and heart disease.
What are some of the potential risks associated with consuming banana peels?
Following are some of the risks associated with consuming banana peels:
- Conventional bananas are typically grown with the aid of pesticides. Although this is not usually a problem when eating the fruit itself, it is something to think about when consuming the peel (6).
- Exposure to pesticides has been linked to a variety of detrimental effects on health, including an increased likelihood of developing conditions such as dementia, diabetes, high blood pressure, cancer, and autism (6).
- Another potentially hazardous component of a banana peel is saponins, which are renowned for their ability to froth. The levels in bananas are high at 24 percent, much beyond the 3 percent limit considered acceptable for animal ingestion (7).
- The risk of microorganisms contamination is something that you also should keep in mind (8).
In this brief article, we have answered the question “can you eat banana peels?”. We have also discussed the potential health benefits and risks of eating banana peels.
1. Hikal WM. et al. Banana Peels: A Waste Treasure for Human Being. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2022,13, 2022:7616452.
2. Amini Khoozani, A., Birch, J. & Bekhit, A.ED.A. Production, application and health effects of banana pulp and peel flour in the food industry. J Food Sci Technol, 2019, 56, 548–559.
3. Segura-Badilla, O. et al. Potential use of banana peel (Musa cavendish) as ingredient for pasta and bakery products. Heliyon, 2022, 11;8(10):e11044.
4. Prashanthi, D., Chaitanya, M. A review on multiple uses of banana peel. IJSDR, 2020, 5.
5. Sidhu, J.S., Zafar, A.T. Bioactive compounds in banana fruits and their health benefits. Food Quality and Safety, 2018, 2, 183–188.
6. Hero, M., et al. Dietary Risk Assessment Of Pesticide Residues In Bananas. J Hygienic Eng and Design, 2017.
7. Research on the Use of Banana Peels as an Alternative Floorwax. WritingBros. 2021.
8. Novak, FR., et al. Banana peel: a possible source of infection in the treatment of nipple fissures. J Pediatr, 2003, 79(3):221-6.