12 Health Benefits of Eating a Banana Flower that Most People Don’t Know About

11. Helps prevent aging One of the theories of aging is the Free Radical Theory. To explain this, we need to go back to the chemistry… Simi - June 3, 2018

11. Helps prevent aging

One of the theories of aging is the Free Radical Theory. To explain this, we need to go back to the chemistry books. Ordinary, ordinary atoms and molecules (groups of atoms) have a balanced number of electrons. Electrons are minute, negatively-charged sub-atomic particles that usually exist in pairs. When in pairs, you can achieve balance so that the atom or molecule is stable and not highly reactive. Free radicals have unbalanced, unpaired electrons that move around looking for electrons to remove from other molecules. In the process, they cause damage to the body.

Free radicals steal electrons from molecules such as proteins and the DNA in our skin, causing stress to the cells and damage. The accumulation of damage is, according to the theory, what causes aging. Free radicals can be found all over the place, including inside the body as the result of normal processes. However, being exposed to external factors such as UV rays from the sun, pollution and smoking result in the production of a lot more free radicals.

Oxidative stress occurs when the level of free radicals present is too high for the body to defend itself. The body’s natural defense products are called antioxidants. Antioxidants work by giving free radicals the extra electrons they need so that the free radicals don’t take electrons from other places we need them. But it is not only our bodies that produce antioxidants.

We also carry in other natural antioxidants in our diet. One example is vitamin C, which is present in high levels in the banana flower, as well as in citrus fruit and leafy greens. Banana flowers also contain other powerful antioxidants such as tannins and flavonoids. These antioxidants relieve conditions of stress in the cells of the body. They also slow down the aging process, thus preventing premature aging.

12. Fights overweight

Obesity is a growing problem around the world, and America has what can be called an obesity epidemic. In 2017, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that nearly 40% of American adults and almost 20% of teenagers are obese. These are the highest rates ever recorded. They also said that in spite of various public health campaigns aimed at improving nutrition and increasing physical activity, Americans are just getting fatter.

One of the most worrying things is how the obesity crisis is affecting young people in the States. Obesity is not just overweight. It is medically-defined as having a body-mass index (BMI) over 30. You can see that 1 in 5 teens aged 12 to 19, 1 in 5 kids aged 6 to 11, and 1 in 10 pre-schoolers aged 2 to 5 are obese. In fact, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has said that childhood obesity is soaring across the globe, has increased tenfold over the past 40 years.

The saying that fat children make fat adults is true. Children who are overweight or obese are more likely to remain that way into adulthood and risk early death. Altogether, over 70% of Americans are either overweight or obese, so that an unhealthy weight is now the ‘new normal.’ Americans with a normal BMI of 25 or under are now in the minority. And the crisis continues to worsen. The biggest culprits in this obesity epidemic appear to be lack of exercise and an unhealthy diet. People are doing less and less physical activity as part of their normal days, and hundreds of tempting, new and unhealthy processed foods grow all the time.

If you are trying to lose weight, it turns out that banana flowers might be just what you’re looking for. Because they contain lots of fiber, they keep you fuller for longer, sating the appetite, and providing many essential nutrients without thousands of calories.