If, like many other people, you have decided to switch to a carbohydrate-free diet, you probably need to eliminate this fruit. Because of that move, you could experience some surprising health changes.
Here’s what could happen if you completely eliminate bananas from your diet:
- Your immune system could suffer
Bananas – and especially unripe bananas – are an excellent source of starch that feeds healthy bacteria in your digestive tract. However, if you eliminate bananas from your diet, you can deprive your beneficial intestinal bacteria of the food they need to reproduce.
According to research from 2013, appropriate probiotic fibers can help support your immune system, but throwing out probiotic foods, such as bananas, can negatively affect your immunity. In other words, you can potentially become more susceptible to disease.
- You will need more time to recover from training
A medium banana contains about 517 milligrams of potassium or 11% of the recommended daily dose, and potassium deficiency is associated with muscle cramps.
A 2012 study published in PLOS One also found that bananas were effective in reducing inflammation after exercise and created a higher difference in circulating dopamine in athletes after training from carbohydrate-based recovery recovery drinks, which could mean that eliminating them from the diet could slow recovery from training.
- Higher risk of developing high blood pressure
If you want to keep your blood pressure in a healthy range, you might want to keep bananas on your menu. A 2005 study published in the journal Hypertension found that foods rich in potassium are likely to have a similar effect on lowering blood pressure as potassium chloride, a supplement often used to lower blood pressure.
- There may be a higher risk of stroke
High blood pressure is a serious risk factor for stroke, and eliminating potassium-rich foods, such as bananas, from your diet could further increase that risk.
In fact, a review of a 2013 meta-analysis found that people who ingested more potassium reduced their risk of stroke by as much as 24%.