Bananas contain moderate amounts of zinc. A banana provides up to 0.23 mg of zinc, or 2.1% of the daily required dose!
Health benefits of zinc
Zinc is vital for good health. It is required for the activity of over 100 enzymes! Actually, it’s the second most abundant trace mineral in the human body after iron.
For instance, zinc plays a key role in metabolism, protein synthesis, sense of taste and smell, immune system, blood sugar levels, and wound healing. Also, it protects the skin and eyes.
Moreover, zinc is crucial for autophagy. Autophagy is a process by which cells degrade and get rid of their damaged components. Autophagy seems to prolong lifespan, fight bacteria and viruses, protect against Parkinson’s disease and certain forms of dementia. Most noteworthy, autophagy, along with fasting, are promising for the treatment of certain cancers.[1,2]
How much zinc do we need a day?
The daily recommended intake of zinc is 11 mg for men and 8 mg for women.
Men require a higher dose of zinc, as they lose approximately 2.5 mg of zinc per ejaculation! Also, zinc is vital for the synthesis of testosterone and other important hormones for increased sex drive and fertility.
But, zinc deficiency is pretty common worldwide. About 2 billion people are deficient in zinc.
Hence, as many people fail to meet the daily required dose of zinc, taking zinc supplements could be beneficial.
You’ll find a wide variety of zinc supplements on iHerb. Use our affiliate link to get a $5 discount (new customers), or a 5% discount (existing iHerb customers) on your order.
Certainly, you shouldn’t exceed the maximum safe dose of zinc and above all, you should consult your healthcare provider first.
What’s the zinc content of a banana?
Bananas contain 0.15 mg of zinc per 100 g. Actually, a medium banana contains 0.18 mg of zinc, or 1.6% of the daily required dose, while a large banana contains about 0.23 mg of zinc, or 2.1% of the daily required dose!
Moreover, dehydrated banana chips and green banana powder contain about 0.61 mg of zinc per 100 g, or 5.5% of the daily required dose. You should consume banana chips in moderation, though. They’re particularly high in sugars.
Common foods rich in zinc
Oysters are the richest food in zinc. They contain 74 mg per serving, or 673% DV! Their particularly high zinc content may be the reason why they’re considered an aphrodisiac food. We should avoid eating them regularly, though. Extremely high amounts of zinc may cause adverse effects.
Red meet, pork, and poultry are the main sources of zinc in a standard Western diet. A serving of beef has about 7 mg of zinc, or 64% DV (Daily Value). A serving of pork has 2.9 mg or 26% DV. A serving of chicken has 2.4 mg of zinc or 22% DV.
If you want to boost your daily intake of zinc, you better consume beans, seeds, and nuts. They’re excellent plant-based foods high in zinc.
Consuming high amounts of animal-based foods can be bad for health. They’re packed with saturated fatty acids, which in high doses can be dangerous for health. According to the American Heart Association, we shouldn’t consume more than 13 g of saturated fat a day. It can raise LDL-cholesterol, and increase the risk of stroke and heart disease.