Banana: 8 Different Types with Nutritional Value, Health Benefits

Bananas are one of the most popular fruits in the world. Not only are they delicious, but they are also incredibly nutritious, providing a range of essential vitamins and minerals. In this post, we’ll take a look at the health benefits, as well as some tasty recipes for you to try out. We’ll also discuss some of the potential risks associated with over-consuming this fruit. So, grab yourself a banana and let’s get started!

Yelakki Banana / Musa paradisiaca / Plantain

Banana Nutritional Value and Calories Chart

Bananas are an excellent source of dietary fiber, vitamin B6, vitamin C, potassium, and manganese. They are also a good source of magnesium, folate, riboflavin, niacin, and iron. One medium banana contains about 105 calories and 3 grams of dietary fiber. Apart from high nutritional value, they are good for all ages – children, old age, young or adult. There are many health benefits of eating banana everyday. Nutritional value per 100 g:

  • Biotin: 0.2 µg
  • Calcium: 5 mg
  • Carbohydrates (Carbs): 22.84 g
  • Chloride: 17 mg
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg
  • Choline: 7.2 mg
  • Chromium: 0.42 µg
  • Copper: 0.092 mg
  • Dietary Fiber: 2.6 g
  • Energy (Calories): 89 kcal
  • Fat: 0.33 g
  • Iodine: 0.07 µg
  • Iron: 0.26 mg
  • Magnesium: 27 mg
  • Manganese: 0.17 mg
  • Molybdenum: 0.02 µg
  • Pantothenic Acid: 0.43 mg
  • Phosphorus: 22 mg
  • Potassium: 358 mg
  • Protein: 1.09 g
  • Saturated fat: 0.06 g
  • Selenium: 0.06 µg
  • Sodium: 1 mg
  • Sugars: 12.23 g
  • Vitamin A: 81 IU
  • Vitamin B1 (Thiamin): 0.031 mg
  • Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin): 0.072 mg
  • Vitamin B3 (Niacin): 0.665 mg
  • Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic Acid): 0.43 mg
  • Vitamin B6: 0.36 mg
  • Vitamin B9 (Folate / Folic Acid): 20 µg
  • Vitamin B12: 0 µg
  • Vitamin C: 8.7 mg
  • Vitamin D: 0 IU
  • Vitamin E: 0.1 mg
  • Vitamin K: 0.5 µg
  • Water: 74.91 g
  • Zinc: 0.14 mg

Banana in India

Bananas are native, in various forms, from India and Burma through the Malay Archipelago to New Guinea, Australia, Samoa and tropical Africa. It’s universally cultivated in tropical regions. Banana has uncountable health benefits. Also no part of banana tree is waste.

  • Scientific Binomial: Musa paradisiaca
  • Common English: Banana / Plantain
  • Ayurvedic: Kadali / Rambhaa / Sakrtphala / Vaaranaa / Mochaa / Ambusaara / Anshumatiphal
  • Unani: Kelaa / Mouz
  • Sanskrit: Kadali
  • Hindi / Urdu: Kela
  • Bengali: Kala
  • Marathi: Kel
  • Telugu: Arati Pandu
  • Tamil: Vaazhai / Vazha Pazham / Monthan Valai
  • Gujarati
  • Kannada: Bale Hannu
  • Malayalam: Pazham / Vazha Pazham
  • Oriya
  • Punjabi / Sindhi
  • Assamese
  • Kashmiri
  • Konkani
  • Manipuri
  • Dogri
  • Bhojpuri

Types Of Bananas

There are numerous types, each with its own unique characteristics, flavors, and uses. While the most common varieties are the yellow Cavendish found in many supermarkets, there are several other types worth exploring:

1. Cavendish Bananas

Cavendish are one of the most widely consumed banana varieties globally. They are medium-sized, elongated, and typically have a slight curve. Cavendish have a thick, bright yellow peel that turns darker as they ripen. They are known for their uniform size and shape, making them easy to handle and package. These variety have a creamy texture and a mildly sweet flavor with subtle tropical notes. They are versatile and commonly eaten raw or used in various recipes, including smoothies, desserts, and baked goods.

2. Gros Michel Bananas

Gros Michel bananas were once the dominant variety in the global banana market until they were largely replaced by the Cavendish due to Panama disease. These are larger and more robust compared to Cavendish variety. They have a thicker peel and are known for their sturdy bunches. These bananas have a rich, sweet flavor with hints of tanginess. They have a firm texture, making them suitable for cooking and frying. Gros Michel bananas are less common in commercial markets today but are still cultivated in some regions.

3. Lady Finger Bananas (Baby Bananas or Finger Bananas)

Lady Finger bananas are smaller and more slender compared to traditional variety. They are typically about half the size of Cavendish. Lady Finger variety have a thin, delicate peel that is easy to peel away. They often grow in small clusters or “hands” and are known for their unique appearance. These bananas have a sweet, creamy flavor with a hint of tanginess. They have a soft and smooth texture, making them ideal for snacking or adding to fruit salads. Lady Finger type is popular for their compact size and portability.

4. Red Bananas

Red bananas, also known as Red Dacca bananas, are distinguished by their deep reddish-purple skin when ripe. They are shorter and plumper than traditional yellow type. The peel of red bananas is thick and tough, with a vibrant red to maroon color when fully ripe. The flesh inside is creamy white or pinkish, with a softer texture compared to yellow variety. Red variety have a sweet, creamy flavor with subtle hints of raspberry or strawberry. They are slightly firmer and denser than yellow, making them ideal for snacking or adding to fruit salads.

5. Blue Java (Ice Cream Bananas)

Blue Java bananas are renowned for their distinctive blue-green skin, which gives them their alternate name, “Ice Cream.” They are notable for their ability to withstand cooler temperatures. Blue Java varieties are larger than typical dessert bananas and have a thick peel with a bluish-green hue when ripe. The flesh inside is pale yellow and has a creamy texture. Blue Java are prized for their rich, creamy flavor reminiscent of vanilla ice cream or custard. They are sweet and aromatic, making them a favorite for fresh eating or blending into smoothies.

6. Manzano (Apple Bananas)

Manzano, also known as Apple bananas, are named for their apple-like flavor and texture. They are smaller and rounder than traditional veriety, with a thicker peel. Manzano have a distinctive yellow peel that darkens as they ripen. The flesh inside is creamy white and firmer compared to dessert bananas, with a texture reminiscent of apples. Manzano have a sweet, tangy flavor similar to apples, with hints of tropical fruitiness. They are slightly more tart than traditional bananas, making them a unique addition to fruit salads or eaten on their own.

7. Goldfinger Banana

The Goldfinger banana is a relatively new hybrid variety known for its disease resistance and longer shelf life compared to traditional variety. Goldfinger have a bright yellow peel with distinctive red speckles or streaks. They are medium to large in size and have a uniform, elongated shape. Goldfinger are characterized by their sweet, tropical flavor with hints of honey and citrus. They have a creamy texture and are ideal for fresh consumption or adding to smoothies and desserts. Goldfinger are cultivated in various regions, including parts of Latin America and Southeast Asia. They are becoming increasingly available in specialty markets and gourmet grocery stores due to their unique characteristics.

8. Mysore Banana

The Mysore banana is a variety native to India, known for its distinctive flavor and aroma. Mysore variety have a slender, elongated shape and a bright yellow peel with characteristic brown speckles when ripe. Mysore bananas are prized for their sweet, aromatic flavor with hints of honey and floral notes. They have a creamy texture and are often enjoyed fresh or used in traditional Indian desserts and dishes. Mysore bananas are predominantly cultivated in regions of India, particularly in the state of Karnataka. While they may be less common in international markets, they are widely consumed locally and can sometimes be found in specialty stores catering to Indian cuisine.

Plantain vs. Dessert Bananas

  • Plantains: Plantains are starchy, less sweet varieties of bananas that are typically larger and firmer than dessert bananas. They are a staple food in many tropical regions. People primarily use plantains in savory dishes and often treat them more like a vegetable than a fruit. You can fry, boil, mash, or bake them. Common preparations include fried plantains (tostones or plátanos maduros), plantain chips, and mashed plantains (mangu). Plantains have a mild, starchy flavor when unripe, similar to that of a potato. As they ripen, they become sweeter but still maintain a firmer texture compared to dessert bananas.
  • Dessert Bananas: Dessert, such as Cavendish and Lady Finger bananas, are sweeter and softer compared to plantains. They are typically smaller and have thinner peels. Dessert varieties are commonly eaten raw as a snack or used in desserts, smoothies, and baked goods. You can also cook them in various ways, including grilling, sautéing, or caramelizing. Dessert varieties are versatile and add sweetness and creaminess to dishes. Dessert varieties have a sweet, tropical flavor with varying degrees of ripeness. When fully ripe, they are soft, creamy, and have a more pronounced sweetness compared to plantains.

Banana Health Benefits

Bananas has high nutritional value. These are rich source of thiamine, vitamin C, vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), vitamin B12 (cobolamin), potassium, and fiber. Ripe bananas are highly beneficial in the treatment of ulcerative colitis, being bland, smooth, easily digested and slightly laxative. They also relieve acute symptoms and promote the healing process. This fruit normalize colonic functions in the large intestine to absorb large amounts of water for proper bowel movements. They are useful to treat boils, burns, celiac diseases, colitis, diarrhea, fatigue, herpes, headache, hypertension, insulin shock, rash, sores, stress, stomach ulcers, warts.

Home Remedies

  • Skin Care: For insect bites and stings, rub a plantain banana skin over area to reduce itching.
  • Menstrual Bleeding: For menstrual disorders, cooked banana flower eaten with curd is one of the more important home remedy. The banana flower appears to increase progesterone hormone and reduce the bleeding.
  • Kidney Strengthener: For nephritis, consume a diet of only bananas for three or four days, eating eight to nine bananas a day. As this fruit contain low protein, salt and high carbohydrates, they are beneficial during nephritis.
  • Snake Bite Folk Remedy: For snake-bite especially cobra venom poisoning, it is believe that, the use of plantain roots juice works as an antidote.
  • Stomach Problems: For peptic ulcers try effective remedy with this fruit. It contain an unidentified compound called, perhaps jokingly, vitamin U (against ulcers). The unripe banana, dried in shade at room temperature of 26-32° C and powdered, has shown to have anti-ulcer activity in a variety of chemically-induced ulcers; gastric ulcers produced by intraperitoneal injections of histamine, aspirin-induced ulcers and indomethacin induced ulcers.
  • Acidity: Bananas neutralizes the over acidity of the gastric juices and reduces the irritation of the ulcer by quoting the lining of the stomach.
  • Migraine Headache: In Trinidad, they apply a poultice of ripe banana peel to the forehead and back of the neck to relieve excruciating migraines.
  • Hypertension: In the Bahamas a decoction of fresh green peel is useful as a remedy for hypertension.
  • Banana and milk is an ideal diet for the patients who are in an advanced state of the disease.


Q. What are spiritual believes associated with banana plant?

This plant yield one bunch of fruit and then die. Because the roots of the plants are very tenacious, once a banana patch establishes, it becomes hard to get rid of.

  • Some people believe that, banana attract abundance, increase fertility, protect property, and enhance ability to experience joy.
  • Sitting under a banana tree when meditate will dispel negative thinking and increase ability to experience joy. If they don’t grow in nearby area, imagine yourself sitting under one, with warm trade winds blowing and the smell of fresh tropical flowers embracing you.
  • Place the leaves over door for protection.
  • A marriage ceremony performed under a banana tree will ensure the couple of a long and happy union. This is the reason why most of the Indian ceremonies need big banana leaves during. They use leaves in place of whole banana tree.
  • Eating the fruit on a regular basis will increase fertility.
Q. What can I do with leftover banana peels?

Don’t throw those banana peels.

  • Raw unripe green banana peel is valuable remedy for cancerous sores, herpes lesions and diabetic leg ulcers. Take the peels and grate them to dry OR burn the peels for ash and apply of affected area.
  • Apply the inner surface of the ripe banana skin directly to burns, rash and boils for healing relief.
  • Curiously enough, the inside of the peel also makes a dandy shoe polish for scuff marks.
  • For plantar warts, cut the a piece of ripe banana skin and place the inside white mushy part against the warts. Tape it down good with some adhesive tape. Take out before bath and after finishing shower, dry the feet nicely and apply the fresh peel. Repeat at least for six months for complete cure, it will take at least a month to see any changes.
Q. Are bananas a fruit or a vegetable?

Botanically, they classify as berries, and therefore, we consider them fruits. They develop from a flower with a single ovary and contain seeds, although the seeds in cultivated bananas are typically small and undeveloped.

Q. When is the best time to eat a banana?

The best time to eat this fruit depends on personal preference and dietary needs. You can enjoy them at any time of the day, and they serve as a convenient snack option. Many people enjoy it as part of breakfast, in smoothies, as a mid-morning or afternoon snack, or even as a pre-workout energy boost.

Q. Is it true that bananas are radioactive, and if you eat too many they are harmful?

Bananas contain a small amount of naturally occurring radioactive potassium, specifically potassium-40, which many foods and the environment contain. However, the levels of radiation in this fruit are extremely low and pose no harm to human health. In fact, eating bananas exposes us to negligible radiation compared to other sources of radiation we encounter in daily life.

Q. At what stage is a banana most nutritious to eat, green, brown, yellow, or fully ripe?

The nutritional content varies slightly depending on their ripeness. Green are higher in resistant starch, which is a type of dietary fiber that may aid in digestion and help regulate blood sugar levels. As bananas ripen and turn yellow, the starch content decreases, and the sugar content increases, making them sweeter and softer. Fully ripe bananas with brown spots are easier to digest and may have higher levels of antioxidants, including vitamin C and antioxidants called polyphenols.

Q. What is the stringy part of a banana called?

The stringy part of a banana is called the “phloem bundles.” These are vascular tissues that run through the length of the banana fruit. While they are not harmful to eat, some people prefer to remove them because of their fibrous texture.

Q. How should I store bananas to keep them fresh?

You should store them at room temperature, preferably in a well-ventilated area away from direct sunlight. Hanging on a banana hook or placing them on a countertop is a common method. Avoid storing in plastic bags or containers as this can accelerate ripening and lead to premature spoilage. If you want to slow down the ripening process, you can place bananas in the refrigerator. The peel may darken, but the fruit inside will remain fresh.

Q. How do I ripen bananas quickly?

To ripen bananas quickly, you can place them in a paper bag with an ethylene-producing fruit, such as an apple or tomato. Ethylene is a natural plant hormone that speeds up the ripening process. Close the bag loosely and leave it at room temperature. Checking the fruit periodically will help you monitor their ripeness. Alternatively, you can place them in a warm area, such as near a sunny window or on top of the refrigerator, to accelerate ripening.

Q. Can I freeze bananas for later use?

Yes, you can freeze it for later use. Frozen bananas are great for making smoothies, banana bread, and other baked goods. To freeze, peel them and cut them into slices or chunks. Place the pieces in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and freeze until solid. Once frozen, transfer the pieces to a freezer-safe container or resealable bag. You can keep frozen bananas in the freezer for several months.

Q. Can bananas lower blood pressure?

Bananas are a good source of potassium, a mineral that plays a key role in regulating blood pressure. Potassium helps to counteract the effects of sodium, which can contribute to high blood pressure. Including potassium-rich foods like bananas in your diet as part of a balanced, healthy eating pattern may help support healthy blood pressure levels. However, it’s important to note that this fruit alone may not be sufficient to lower blood pressure significantly, and lifestyle factors such as regular physical activity and a healthy diet overall are important for maintaining cardiovascular health.

Q. How can I use overripe bananas?

They are perfect for various culinary purposes:

  • Banana Bread: Overripe bananas add moisture and sweetness to banana bread, making it moist and flavorful.
  • Smoothies: You can blend frozen overripe bananas into smoothies for a creamy texture and natural sweetness.
  • Pancakes and Muffins: You can use mashed overripe bananas as a natural sweetener and moisture enhancer in pancakes and muffins.
  • Baking: You can use overripe bananas in cakes, cookies, and other baked goods to add moisture and sweetness.
Q. How much sugar is in a banana?

The sugar content in it varies depending on its size and ripeness. On average, a medium-sized fruit contains about 14 grams of sugar. However, it also contain fiber and other nutrients that help slow down the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream, making it a healthier choice compared to many processed snacks and sweets.

Q. Are bananas good for diabetics?

Bananas can be included in a diabetic diet in moderation. While they contain natural sugars, they also provide fiber, vitamins, and minerals. The fiber in this fruit helps slow down the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream, which can help prevent spikes in blood sugar levels. It’s essential for people with diabetes to monitor their carbohydrate intake, including sugars from fruits like bananas, and to incorporate them into a balanced diet in consultation with a healthcare professional.

Q. Are banana trees really trees?

Botanically speaking, banana plants are classified as herbs, not trees. Although people often call them banana trees because of their tall, tree-like appearance, they lack a woody trunk like typical trees. Instead, banana plants possess a pseudostem, which consists of tightly packed leaf sheaths that create the appearance of a trunk.

Q. The biggest banana bunch ever recorded weighed how much?

The largest recorded bunch weighed an impressive 130.8 kilograms (288 pounds). Guinness World Records recognized the heaviest bunch ever recorded, containing approximately 473 individual bananas, grown in the Canary Islands, Spain, in 2001.

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