Are Banana Chips Healthy?
Bananas are one of the most nutritious foods and can be consumed in many different ways. The benefits it offers come from its high fiber and potassium content. Many people fry and dehydrate bananas to make banana chips. These banana chips have actually become quite popular and are found everywhere – in trail mix, cereal, and healthy snack foods. These chips can be quite tasty, but are they healthy? Read on to find out.
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Are Banana Chips Healthy?
They may or may not be healthy depending on how they have been processed. Many people think banana chips are healthy because they are made from fruit. Some people also eat these dried chips as snacks or with chocolate and nuts, which make them unhealthy in many ways. The reason why banana chips may not be that healthy is that they contain a large amount of sugar and saturated fat. The high amounts of saturated fat outweigh the benefits you get from a few essential nutrients found in these chips. You will be better off eating fresh bananas instead of eating banana chips.
Nutrition Facts of Banana Chips
You already have the answer to, “Are banana chips healthy?” Let’s talk about a bit more about some nutrition facts of banana chips.
Bananas contain loads of potassium, and even if you eat banana chips, potassium will still be intact mainly because cooking doesn’t destroy potassium. If you eat 1.5 ounces of banana chips, you will get about 225mg of potassium. You should know that potassium works as an electrolyte and plays a big role in maintaining normal heart contractions, muscle tone, and the distribution of water throughout your body. When there’s insufficient amount of potassium in your body, you will have to deal with weakness, cramps, edema and irregular heartbeat.
Bananas are a good source of dietary fiber, and it still contains enough fiber even when you cook them and eat as banana chips. You will get 3g of fiber out of 1.5-ounce serving of banana chips – this provides you with 12% of your recommended daily fiber content. Eating insufficient amount of fiber will lead to several digestive issues and bowel problems. Dietary fiber is important to keep your intestine clean – it also promotes regular bowel movements. Water-soluble fiber plays a big role in reducing cholesterol levels. Just make sure to drink plenty of water when you’re eating banana chips or other fiber-rich snacks to prevent constipation.
Banana chips contain a good amount of iron that helps form myoglobin and hemoglobin that help transfer enough oxygen to your cells. Iron is also important to stimulate enzymes that support your metabolism. If you have a 4-ounce serving of banana chips, you will get 1.4mg of iron.
In order to give your chips that crunchy texture you love, many manufacturers actually deep-fry banana slices. This makes those chips a very high source of fat. In fact, an ounce of banana chips will have about 9.53g of fat, and most of it (8.21) is saturated fat that can elevate your cholesterol levels and increase your risk for heart disease. Too much of saturated fat will also increase your risk for type 2 diabetes. It is therefore a good idea to eat banana chips occasionally instead of making them a regular part of your diet.
5. Added Sugar
Bananas naturally contain sugar, but refined sugar used at the time of processing banana chips can be quite unhealthy. It is used to enhance the flavor of your chips. If you eat one-half cup of banana chips, you will be ingesting 12g of added sugar in your body. If you eat too much of it, you may end up dealing with diabetes, obesity, and elevated triglycerides. If you really want to enjoy dried banana chips, be sure to buy ones that don’t contain added sugar.
Baking Banana Chips at Home
As mentioned already, the answer to your question, “Are banana chips healthy?” depends on how you prepare it. It means you can make it healthy by preparing it at home. This way, you don’t have to eat any harmful additives usually present in store-bought banana chips. If you like your chips sweet, you can opt for ripe bananas because they contain more fructose sugar. Here’s how to bake banana chips with ease:
Time: 2 hours 20 minutes
A couple of ripe bananas
Start by preheating your oven to 225 degrees.
Take ripe bananas and slice into 1/8 slices. Place them all in a single layer on your baking tray. Cover it with parchment paper.
Take your lemon juice and apply it on your banana tray with the help of a brush.
Bake for a couple of hours or continue until your bananas have dried out completely. Peel up from the parchment paper to ensure the air circulates through it.
Remove it from your oven and leave for half an hour until it cools off completely.
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