Calories in a banana

November 12, 2012

Calories in a banana

Bananas are a known source of slow-release energy, but too many of them can make you put on weight due to their rich energy content

The average amount of calories in a banana is 97. An average sized banana also contains 20 g of carbohydrate; 1.2 g of protein; 0.3 g of fat and 4.2g of fiber. Bananas are also a good source of pectin and resistant starch which causes a sensation of fullness and satiety – which is very useful when trying to lose weight.

Banana bread

Banana bread is a nutritious food which is great for breakfast or a snack, the addition of bananas means more nutrients for the same amount of calories when compared to many other breads. Although bananas are rich in carbohydrate, they are also a great source of vitamins and protein while remaining very low fat. Many people eat things like banana and peanut butter on toast for breakfast, as not only does it taste great but the combination of protein-rich peanut butter and slow-release carbohydrates in the banana mean that those who breakfast on this feast definitely won’t be feeling those hunger pangs before lunch time.

Nutritional values of banana bread

If you make your own banana bread then a 2oz slice will contain around 196 calories (readymade varieties may have more or less calories, check the labeling.) Fat and sugar levels will also affect the number of calories in the bread – choose a recipe that is low in fat and sugar in order to produce healthier bread. It is great with peanut butter spread on it for breakfast or a mid-morning snack!

Small, beneficial changes

If you already have a great recipe for banana bread and know that there are 97 calories in a banana it is relatively easy to adapt your recipe and improve its health benefits.

  • Use canola oil instead of butter in order to increase the level of heart healthy monounsaturated fats

  • Replace at least half of the sugar content with unsweetened apple sauce or even low fat yogurt – either of these ingredients will help to hold the banana loaf together and will create a pleasant texture. In the absence of apple sauce or yogurt you can safely reduce the amount of sugar by at least a third without affecting the flavor or consistency of the bread.

  • Replace at least half of the white flour required with whole meal flour which will increase the amount of fiber in your banana bread. Two tablespoons of ground flax seeds will also increase the fiber content without affecting flavor.

  • Add ½ cup of dried milk to supplement the protein levels provided by any egg and milk in your recipe. The addition of chopped walnuts will also add protein as well as omega-3 fatty acids.

  • Banana bread is healthy and nutritious by adding ground flax seeds, nuts or dried fruit before baking you can easily increase the vitamin content of the finished bread.

  • Not only are there few calories in a banana there is also 80mg of potassium, 13mg folic acid, Vitamin A and trace amounts of calcium and magnesium all of which makes it a great addition to any recipe.

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