A banana is pretty high in fiber. It contains up to 3.9g of fiber, or 14% of the recommended daily intake!
How much fiber do we need a day?
The recommended daily fiber intake is 14g per 1000 kcal. So, most people should consume at least 28g of fiber a day, or even much higher doses (3). Actually, there hasn’t been established a maximum safe dose of fiber.
Unfortunately, only about 6% of people consume the recommended daily fiber dose. Actually, most people consume only half of the recommended daily intake (1).
Health benefits of a diet high in fiber
Fiber is important for good health. Consuming adequate amounts of fiber daily has been linked to significantly lower risk of developing (2):
- coronary heart disease,
- obesity, and
- certain gastrointestinal diseases.
Eating more fiber can provide extra health benefits, such as low blood pressure and low LDL-cholesterol (1).
Fiber in bananas helps you lose weight
Scientists examined 252 women for a 20-month period. They found that each 1 extra gram of fiber per 1000 kcal can reduce body weight and body fat percentage by 0.25% (1).
On the contrary, even consuming 1g of fiber less per 1000 kcal can prevent body fat loss. In general, diets high in fiber can lower body weight, BMI, waist circumference, and chronic inflammation (1). Fruits, such as bananas, help us increase our daily fiber intake.
Moreover, a diet high in fiber has anti-aging effects. A 2018 study of 5,674 adults found that a fiber intake of 10g per 1000 kcal reduced biologic aging by 4.3 years (1).
Fiber in a banana helps you live longer
Furthermore, a 2017 study, that analyzed data from over 2 million people, found significantly reduced mortality risk, for people who consumed more fruits. Every extra 200g of fruit intake per day, meant 15% less risk to die early (1). Some fruits, such as apples, pears, berries, oranges, mandarins, lemons, and bananas, had a greater effect on lowering the risk of dying early, though.
Another study found that elderly people with cardiovascular diseases, who consumed more than 210g of fruit daily, had a significantly lower risk of premature death by about 40%.
Another UK study found that consuming 7 portions of fruits daily reduced the risk of dying from cardiovascular diseases by 43% as compared to eating only 2.5 portions of fruits per day.
How much fiber in a banana?
According to data from the US Department of Agriculture, a banana has 2.6g of dietary fiber per 100g. Practically, a medium banana has about 3.1g of fiber, and a large banana may contain more than 3.9g of fiber, or 14% DV (Daily Value)!
Green bananas vs ripe bananas
Unripe green bananas are rich in resistant starches; a type of insoluble fiber. For instance, a medium green unripe banana contains about 5g of resistant starches.
In contrast, green bananas are pretty rich in insoluble fiber. As a banana matures, it becomes richer in soluble fiber.
Soluble fiber dissolves in water, keeping more volume in the stomach. So, soluble fiber keeps us full for longer, helping us lose body weight. On the other hand, insoluble fiber doesn’t dissolve in water. Insoluble fiber can easy defecation.
How can boost my daily fiber intake?
If you want to increase the daily fiber intake, you could buy fiber supplements on Amazon. They’re effective on helping overweight people to lose weight.
But, these aren’t necessary. Above all, you should follow a whole food plant-based diet. Only plants contain dietary fiber. In fact, all beans, vegetables, fruits, whole-grains, seeds, and nuts are particularly high in fiber!
As a rule of thumb, prefer buying organic foods. The skin of fruits and vegetables is the richest part in fiber, as well as minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants!