Green bananas are an excellent source of nutrients and make a healthy addition to any diet. However, many people wonder how many calories are in green bananas, especially when they are boiled. In this comprehensive guide, we will provide a detailed calorie breakdown for boiled green bananas and discuss the many health benefits they provide.
The quick answer is that there are approximately 210 calories in 2 medium boiled green bananas (without the peel). This is based on a medium raw green banana containing about 105 calories. When boiled, green bananas retain most of their calories, with a small percentage lost in the boiling water.
Calorie and Nutrition Facts for Boiled Green Bananas
Here is a detailed calorie and nutrient profile for 2 boiled medium green bananas (5 inches long):
As you can see, green bananas are packed with important vitamins, minerals, fiber and carbohydrates. The starch content makes up the majority of calories in boiled green bananas.
Factors That Influence Calorie Content
Several factors can affect the specific calorie content of boiled green bananas, including:
- Size of the banana – Smaller or larger bananas will have slightly less or more calories.
- Cooking method – Boiling vs steaming can result in slightly different calorie levels.
- Ripeness – Unripe vs ripe green bananas have a different starch to sugar ratio.
- Variety – Different banana cultivars may have slightly more or less calories.
- Soil conditions and growing region – This can impact overall nutrition profiles.
- Preparation method – Adding oils, butter or other ingredients will increase calories.
However, these differences are usually quite small. The estimates provided above are for a typical medium boiled green banana without added ingredients.
Nutritional Benefits of Green Bananas
Here are some of the key nutritional benefits that make green bananas a healthy food choice:
Rich in Fiber
Green bananas contain significant amounts of fiber, providing around 6 grams per medium banana. Fiber supports digestive health, heart health, stabilizes blood sugar levels and aids weight management.
Packed with Antioxidants
Green bananas contain beneficial antioxidant compounds including catechins and gallocatechin. These help reduce oxidative stress and lower inflammation in the body.
Provide Key Minerals
Bananas are a useful source of minerals like magnesium, manganese and potassium. Magnesium is needed for bone health and energy production. Manganese supports collagen formation and metabolism. Potassium helps control blood pressure.
Moderate Glycemic Index
Despite their carbohydrate content, green bananas have a low glycemic index. This means they are digested and absorbed slowly, preventing spikes in blood sugar.
Support Heart Health
With their fiber, mineral and antioxidant content, green bananas can support cardiovascular health by lowering blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
Weight Loss Benefits
Adding green bananas to your diet can potentially help with fat loss and weight management for several reasons:
- They are low in calories and fat.
- They are very filling and satiating due to fiber content.
- They help regulate appetite hormones like leptin and ghrelin.
- They keep blood sugar stable which prevents energy crashes.
- The resistant starch may increase fat burning.
However, as with any food, calories still need to be controlled to achieve a calorie deficit for weight loss.
How Many Bananas Should You Eat Per Day?
Most health experts recommend eating 1-2 bananas per day as part of a balanced diet. This provides a good amount of key nutrients without over-consuming calories. People with diabetes or weight loss goals should limit intake to 1 small or medium banana. Athletes and very active people can safely eat 2-4 bananas to meet higher carb needs.
Best Ways to Cook and Prepare Green Bananas
Here are some delicious ways to enjoy cooked green bananas:
Boiling green bananas until tender is a simple preparation method. Enjoy them plain or season with spices.
Steaming instead of boiling helps retain more nutrients. Cook for 10-15 minutes until soft.
Slice boiled bananas and pan-fry in coconut oil or ghee for a tasty side dish.
Mash boiled bananas with nut milk and spices for a quick mash dish.
Wrap in foil and bake boiled bananas plain or stuffed with chocolate/nuts.
Are Green Bananas Good for You?
Yes, green bananas are highly nutritious and offer many benefits. Here are some key reasons why they are good for you:
- Excellent source of fiber, minerals, antioxidants
- Aid in digestion and gut health
- Support heart health by reducing blood pressure
- Help stabilize blood sugar levels
- May boost metabolism and fat burning
- Provide lasting energy due to complex carbs
- Fill you up and curb appetite due to resistant starch
In moderation, green bananas can be enjoyed as part of a healthy diet by most people. The fiber, nutrients and plant compounds they provide support many aspects of health.
Downsides and Precautions
Green bananas are generally very healthy. However, some precautions include:
- The fiber may cause digestive issues like gas or bloating in sensitive people.
- The high carb content means portion size should be controlled, especially for diabetics.
- Potassium levels can be problematic for those with severe kidney dysfunction.
- Unripe bananas may trigger migraines in susceptible people due to tyramine content.
- There is a slight risk of pesticide exposure with non-organic bananas.
Overall, green bananas are very safe when consumed cooked in moderation as part of a balanced diet. Those on a renal diet or with chronic migraine issues should exercise caution.
Are green bananas high in carbs?
Yes, green bananas are relatively high in carbohydrates. A medium boiled banana contains around 27 grams of carbs. However, they have a low glycemic index, meaning the carbs are absorbed slowly to prevent spikes in blood sugar.
Are green bananas high in sugar?
No, green bananas are low in sugar compared to ripe bananas. They contain only around 3 grams of sugar per banana, while ripe bananas have 12-15 grams. The starch in unripe bananas converts to sugar as they ripen.
Are green bananas good for diabetics?
In moderation, green bananas can be a good choice for diabetics due to their low glycemic index and high fiber content. However, portion sizes still need to be controlled.
Can you eat green bananas raw?
It’s not recommended to eat raw green bananas. They are very starchy and difficult to digest when uncooked. Raw green bananas contain compounds that can cause severe gastrointestinal distress.
Are green bananas alkaline or acidic?
Green bananas have a pH of around 5.5, making them mildly acidic foods. However, when metabolized they leave behind alkaline byproducts which make them alkalizing to the body.
To summarize, 2 medium boiled green bananas (without peel) contain about 210 calories and offer an impressive nutritious profile. They are packed with fiber, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that provide many potential health benefits. From supporting healthy digestion and blood sugar levels to promoting heart health and weight management, green bananas are worth adding to your diet.
Enjoy green bananas boiled, steamed, mashed or baked in moderation as part of a balanced nutrition plan. Pair them with healthy proteins and fats for better blood sugar control. This versatile fruit is delicious and nutritious.