As you reach for your favorite fruit again, you may be wondering, why do I crave bananas?
Perhaps you don’t think of it as a craving, just a habit.
And why does it matter anyway?
After all, bananas are a healthy snack.
Could there be something in a banana that your body is crying out for?
Or can bananas actually be addictive?
Perhaps there is some hidden chemical in them that make bananas so appealing.
Let’s check out the science behind banana cravings!
There are several reasons why a craving for bananas may occur. The most common cause is a lack of potassium. This is particularly so for those who have a thyroid disorder or don’t eat enough fruit and vegetables. Potassium is a key component of bananas. Lack of energy could leave you craving something sweet, and bananas contain a lot of sugar, more so if they are fully ripe. Not enough Vitamin B6 is a further reason to crave bananas, and as they supply around 20% of your daily requirements, this snack is an ideal solution.
What Medical Conditions Cause a Craving for Bananas?
There are actually several medical reasons why you could be craving bananas.
The most obvious one is a lack of potassium.
The symptoms of potassium deficiency can include muscle cramps, a racing heart, fatigue and weakness, and constipation or diarrhea.
This can be caused by not eating enough fruit or vegetables, a thyroid disorder, or drinking too much caffeine or alcohol.
An average banana contains around 350mg of potassium, which will give you approximately 10% of your daily requirement.
Being low on Vitamin B6 can also cause a craving for bananas.
A lack of this vitamin can be seen in the whites of your eyes which could be an unhealthy yellow color.
You may also experience tingling or numbness in your feet and hands.
One banana supplies 20% of the amount of Vitamin B6 you need each day.
Not necessarily a medical condition itself, fatigue and lack of energy can be a side effect of many illnesses.
Low blood sugar can make you feel tired.
Bananas can give an energy boost due to their high sugar content.
They have a glycemic index of 51, which shows that they are good for blood sugar levels.
And at only 90 calories, should not cause weight gain.
We mustn’t forget the weird phenomenon of pregnancy cravings!
Bananas are a common craving because they can help with many aspects of pregnancy, such as leg cramps or diarrhea.
Why Do Bananas Make You Feel Good?
Of course, your need for a banana may not actually be a true craving.
You could be eating them for the pure pleasure of it!
Bananas contain tryptophan which is a type of protein that is converted into serotonin.
This, in turn, improves your mood and happiness and generally relaxes you.
Bananas can therefore help with depression and anxiety.
However, they are not a substitution for medication, and one banana per day is unlikely to have a noticeable effect.
But they can help you sleep better, which could relieve stressful thoughts.
Sugars are also known to produce a natural high.
And bananas contain a high percentage of sugar.
The riper the banana, the sweeter it is.
And a banana is a much healthier option than sugary junk foods.
The fruit contains 3g of protein which can stave off any hunger pangs.
The fiber content also keeps you feeling fuller for longer.
So, carrying a banana will give you peace of mind that you have something to eat at a moment’s notice.
Bananas are easy to store and don’t require any utensils to open them, making them a healthy snack to take out and about.
Food Cravings and Their Meanings
Craving a banana may be caused by a medical condition.
You may be lacking in potassium or Vitamin B6.
Pregnancy can cause banana cravings to help with any unwanted side effects.
You may need an energy boost or to stave off hunger pangs.
Bananas also produce pleasurable sensations as they contain tryptophan and sugar.
If you have any concerns regarding medical issues, please consult a health professional.
But what if you overdo it with your fruit intake? How many bananas would cause you problems?