For healing with SCD but also for general well-being it is important in which phase of ripening do we consume our bananas.
Did you know, that besides all sorts of beneficial substances, minerals and vitamins, they also contain ethylen, which allows them to finish ripening without the sun, water or it’s plant base? I should also probably note that while the banana plant is reminiscent of a regular tree, it’s not a woody plant, but the largest herb on the planet. The “trunk” of the banana is not a woody stem, as it would be for trees, but structurally it’s more similar to petioles of massive leaves. From this “trunk” bloom giant flowers. Brown leaves reminiscent of flower petals are individiual leaves, in other words transformed leaves supporting the inflorescence.
So that we can indulge bananas in our region, the harvest happens during what’s called a “technological ripeness”, which means they are completely green at this point. To transport them, special cargo ships with climatized spaces are used, which allows them to control the atmosphere, monitor carbon dioxide, add nitrogen oxides and later the aforementioned ethylen to regulate the ripening.
Saccharides are the largest containing substance in bananas, in unripe fruits these are in the form of starch. As bananas ripen they transform into monosaccharides – information about categories of saccharides can be found HERE. High density of starch in unripe bananas may cause flatulence and indigestion. As we know, starch does not promote healthy function of the gut and its regeneration, and that’s why it’s imperative to avoid unripe bananas, even if there is only a hint of green.
In contrast, when it comes to ripe bananas, the containing starch is reduced to about 1%, which is a low amount in the extreme and is perfectly suitable for the purpose of healing.
PHASES OF BANANA RIPENING
1./ green color
2./ color with faint hints of yellow
3./ yellow color with green stalk
4./ yellow color with dark speckles
5./ yellow color with dark speckles and darkening stalk
6./ yellow color with brown stalk and prominent brown spots
7./ half brown with only few remaining spots being yellow, brown stalk
Which bananas are best for direct consumptuion?
It’s very simple, the peel will help us understand what stage is the banana in. As the banana ripens it changes from green to yellow, starch transforms to monosaccharides and significantly changes flavor, from strongly bitter and grassy in aroma to honey sweet. You’d be surprised what a freshly picked banana tastes like, that is, from the tree, or the herb itself, more accurately. We’ve had the opportunity to visit Srí Lanka with Radek, a south Asian region, where you can indulge in fresh bananas thanks to the natural climate. My friends I have to confess, that was an experience of taste that I will never forget.
Bananas that are suitable for consumption then (pictures 4 through 7) are the ones with yellow skin, ideally with a spot here and there. The more ripe they are the more sweet. It’s common that you will forget about a banana somewhere and it goes completely brown. All you have to do there is to peel it off and smell it. Banana can be a little alcoholic at that point, I wouldn’t personally eat it anymore but… different strokes and all. They are not forbidden. Storing bananas in the fridge is a mistake. At lower temperatures banans do not ripen, they lose their aroma, taste, texture and color. They turn grey and black and become just yucky to eat. Don’t do that to them 🙂
Adjust your purchasing of bananas for when you are planning to eat them. If you want to eat them right away pick bananas number 4 – 7 which are already yellow, if you want to eat them later, pick the ones that are not completely yellow, which means 2 – 3, you can leave them at room temperature on the window or on your dinner table until they ripen. You know what my favorite part about bananas is? How practical they are, just toss them in a bag, and when it’s time, just peel them and eat right there. No washing, no cutting, no preparation. What an amazing fruit 🙂
In closing, I will offer you a link to our favorite banana smoothie recipe.
And before I forget, in our cookbook 03 I prepared a recipe for you, Sweet banana bread with date dip.
Have a great day, eat only the perfectly ripe bananas and be well 🙂
Information about the banana plant was sourced from the website of Institute of Experimental Botany of the Czech Academy of Sciences
Fotos: banana ripening table – davidwolfe.com, chimpanzee – communitytable.parade.com
PS, the monkey in the picture didn’t select the ideal banana for SCD, have you noticed? 😉
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