Bananas are the largest herb in the world. First tasted by Alexander the Great during his campaign to India in 327 B.C.E., bananas have since become a staple of diets and recipes all over the world. Bananas are low in fat and calories, and rich in minerals such as potassium.
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Nutritional Content of Bananas
One medium ripe banana weighing 12 g or 4.8 oz. has 110 calories and contains 20 mg of sodium, 450 mg of potassium, 30 g of carbohydrates, 3 g of fiber, 19 g of sugars and 1 g of protein, according to the Food and Drug Administration. Bananas contain 15 percent of the daily requirement for vitamin C and 2 percent of the daily value for iron. Contrary to some culinary thinking, bananas do not contain calcium.
Basic Banana Juice
Bananas are not naturally juicy, so the best way to get banana juice is by using a blender. The final calorie count of homemade banana juice depends on whether water or milk is used. Water and soy milk have the advantage of being low fat and lactose-free. The addition of sweeteners such as honey and sugar add 22 and 16 calories, respectively, per teaspoonful. The caloric contributions of vanilla extract and nutmeg ingredients are negligible.
Banana Juice Recipe
There is a simple recipe for banana juice: Slice 2 medium-size bananas and place them inside a blender. Add 2 cups of water, 4 drops of vanilla extract, 1/8 tsp. of nutmeg and 1 tbsp. of honey, and blend until consistently smooth. This yields two servings of banana juice, containing 143 calories per serving. Use of soy milk or whole milk would add an additional 80 to 150 calories per serving, depending on the type of milk used. If your objective is to gain weight, then whole milk or soy milk should be used instead of water. If you have kidney disease or have been placed on a potassium-restricted diet, do not add banana juice to your diet without first consulting your doctor.