Tuesday, 3 July 2012

Banana Solutions

At this time of the year I find that I can't keep up with my bananas. Before they have been eaten they end up looking a lot like this: (below)
The ripening time of bananas in the summer is much faster than in the winter, particularly if you do not have air conditioning in your home, or you choose to keep it switched off until necessary.

The chemical called Ethylene triggers these changes during maturation of bananas and ripening is the last stage of the process. Ethylene is a gas that is naturally produced by plants to trigger leaves to change colour during fall.

Don't worry this gas (Ethylene) is a natural gas produced by the fruit themselves and is in no way harmful to humans.
Now that I know what causes the accelerated ripening of my bananas, I need to find a way to use them up faster or a way to store them. In our household this fruit is a "go to" for the kids.

Here are some ways:
  • Freeze them whole with the skin on to be used later for baking. Suggestions: Muffins, Banana bread, use for pancakes etc. ( Although in Summer, you don't always want to switch on the oven)
  • Peel, slice and then freeze them in bags.
I have been using the slice and freeze method to freeze bananas for my smoothies. This method eliminates having to thaw them and peel them. Quick and easy and cold, they go straight in the blender to give your smoothies substance and texture.

Keep in mind each banana is worth approximately 105 calories a piece, depending on the size of the fruit. Bananas contain Vitamin B6, Potassium, Fibre (3g) and are a great post workout snack.

I asked Igor Klibanov of Fitness Solutions Plus what was better, eating a banana before a workout or after and he gave me a clear-cut, irrefutable answer. He said, "It depends."
This was Igor's explanation:
 If you're trying to lose body fat, the answer is neither before nor after. If you're working to maximize performance, then eat the banana before and after.

For fat loss, if you have carbohydrates before working out, your body will preferentially burn sugar and not fat. After a workout, you're primarily in fat burning mode until your next carbohydrate-filled meal. If that carbohydrate-filled meal (a banana) comes immediately after the workout, you limit your fat-burning time.

For enhanced performance
, carbohydrates are a very quick fuel source and you burn through carbohydrates very quickly when you work out. Having more carbohydrates will give you more endurance. Having carbohydrates after a workout decreases cortisol, thereby speeding up recovery.

© All Rights Reserved. 2012.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks!! I will have to remember that, no banana before or after for me then! I will have to rethink my after workout snack!


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