We all know that bananas are good for diabetics. Not only is this succulent, sweet fruit rich in fiber, but it also has anti-diabetic properties that can help keep your blood sugar levels down. But did you know that its peel is just as beneficial as well? In fact, some Asian countries even incorporate banana peels into their diet!
If you have high blood sugar levels, knowing the benefits of banana peels just might encourage you to start eating them as well.
What’s in the banana peel?
Banana peel makes up about 40% of the fruit’s total weight. Like its pulp, it contains numerous phytochemicals as well as phenolic compounds beneficial to diabetics. It also has antioxidant properties that can help combat chronic low-grade inflammation which worsens diabetes.
Some of the compounds found in banana peels that help reduce blood sugar levels and maintain normal cholesterol levels include pectin, cellulose, as well as hemicellulose. The banana peel also contains lignin, another compound that reduces oxidative stress and helps prevent nephropathy.
What can eating banana peels do for you?
Chronic low-grade inflammation, as studies have proven, worsens diabetes and prevents the insulin-producing cells from recovering. It also contributes to the development of diabetes complications like heart disease and stroke.
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Banana peels, as mentioned above, are a good source of antioxidants. The antioxidant compounds from banana peels help reduce cellular toxicity caused by chronic low-grade inflammation, giving the cells time to recover. In addition to controlling cellular toxicity though, banana peel’s antioxidant effects also reduce bad cholesterol levels and help prevent heart diseases.
Moreover, the pectin from banana peels has hypoglycemic effects which can help control blood sugar levels. It also stimulates the beta cells of the pancreas to produce insulin.
Finally, because banana peels are rich in fiber, eating it can help slow down the intestine’s absorption of sugar, improving your control over your blood sugar levels.
So the next time you’re thinking of throwing away that banana peel, don’t. As a diabetic, you are going to benefit from it.