Among the most common and loved fruits on the table, bananas perhaps are on the top list of the most consumed fruit. About 96 percent of American households buy bananas at least once a month, and 51 percent of them are eaten during breakfast. Banana has a scientific name Musa sapientum, which means “fruit of the wise men” is packed with health benefits, especially a significant potassium source.
Global exports of banana reached about 18 million tons in 2015, based on the United Nations report. Almost half of them went to the United States and the European market. The U.S. Department of Agriculture says that each person eats 11.4 lbs. of bananas per year. No wonder it is the world’s most appealing fruit.
There are a wide variety of health benefits associated with eating this curvy yellow fruit. Bananas are rich in potassium and pectin, a form of fiber. They can also be an excellent source of magnesium and vitamins C and B6.
What can a regular eating of bananas benefit to our body?
There are several health benefits from eating a banana.
Containing a large amount of potassium, which is an antioxidant, bananas might help prevent wheezing in children who have asthma, according to a study in 2007. However, this claim needs more research to confirm these findings.
Blood pressure is also affected by the food we consume. The American Heart Association (AHA) encourages people to lower the consumption of food rich in salt or sodium and eat more food that contains potassium. Because it can help manage blood pressure and reduce strain on the cardiovascular system. And eating a medium banana can offer almost 9% of a person’s daily potassium needs.
According to laboratory investigations, lectin, a protein that occurs in bananas, may help prevent leukemia cells from growing. Lectin acting as an antioxidant, gets rid of the molecules known as free radicals. A massive free radical build-up can cause cell damage that may occur, leading to cancer.
Following a high fiber diet lower the risk of cardiovascular disease than those on a low fiber diet. People who consume more fiber found out to have lower levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) or “bad” cholesterol. Bananas are jam-packed with potassium, folate, and antioxidants, such as vitamin C.
The American Diabetes Association recommends eating bananas and other fiber-rich fruits to help lower blood sugar levels. Eating a good amount of banana can lower the risk of diabetes (type 2) and may reduce blood sugar levels among diabetic people.
Food that is watery and rich in fiber helps in good digestion. Bananas contain both water and fiber, which promotes regularity in bowel movement. A medium banana can give approximately 10% of a person’s fiber needs for a day. Patients suffering from diarrhea can replace lost potassium and electrolytes by eating bananas.
In 2019, the worldwide exports of banana had totaled an estimated US$14.7. It was a 43.3% increase for all banana shippers over the five years since 2015 when bananas shipments were valued at $10.2 billion.
Basing on the continental perspective, the Latin American, excluding Mexico plus the Caribbean has the highest dollar worth of banana exports in 2019. It was via shipments valued at $8.3 billion or 56.9% of international banana sales. There is 17.5% of total exported bananas from Europe, trailed by shippers in Asia at 15.6%. Smaller percentages came from exporters in Africa (5.2%), North America (4.9%) then Oceania (0.004%) led by Australia.
Listed below are 15 countries that exported the highest dollar value worth of bananas during 2019 based on worldexports.com. These 15 countries shipped 88.8% of global banana exports in 2019 by value.
Ecuador: US$3.3 billion (22.6% of total bananas exports)
Philippines: $1.9 billion (13.2%)
Colombia: $1.6 billion (11%)
Costa Rica: $999.7 million (6.8%)
Guatemala: $944.5 million (6.4%)
Netherlands: $790.6 million (5.4%)
Belgium: $782.1 million (5.3%)
United States: $450.3 million (3.1%)
Dominican Republic: $432.7 million (3%)
Panama: $379.1 million (2.6%)
Ivory Coast: $339.7 million (2.3%)
Honduras: $302.7 million (2.1%)
Mexico: $269.5 million (1.8%)
Cameroon: $256.4 million (1.7%)
Germany: $242.1 million (1.7%)
With these top exporters, the fastest-growing bananas exporters since 2015 includes Philippines (up 338.9%), Cameroon (up 307.5%), Panama (up 280%) and Ivory Coast (up 193.4%).