Friday, January 13, 2012

Weight Loss Benefits of Bananas

The practice of losing weight by eating bananas for breakfast became popular in Japan in 2008, when Tokyo pharmacist Sumiko Watanabe devised a weight-loss plan to help her husband, Hitoshi, lose weight. After following the regime, Hitoshi announced his results on Mixx, a large Japanese social networking site, claiming he lost 37 lbs. The plan does not require excessive dietary changes, but recommends eating at least one raw banana with warm water every morning for breakfast.
Calorie Control
If a medical condition such as an underactive thyroid is not present, the principal reasons for weight gain are eating more calories than you consume, drinking excess alcohol or not exercising enough. Therefore, if you eat two bananas for breakfast, but overindulge during the rest of the day, you are unlikely to lose weight. However, if you have been eating a high-calorie breakfast that is mostly void of nutrition, such as breakfast pastries or sugar-laden cereals, eating bananas instead can help you lose weight.
Bananas are an extremely healthful food, with many nutritional benefits. Among other nutrients, they are a rich source of vitamin C and potassium. Potassium-rich foods can help to keep blood sugar levels stable, which is important when you want to lose weight, because blood sugar fluctuations can cause cravings for sweet, sugary foods.
A study by Arizona State University published in the June 2005 issue of the "Journal of the American College of Nutrition" found that people with sufficient levels of vitamin C burn around 30 percent more fat during exercise than those who have low levels. Low vitamin C levels were found to be correlative to excess body fat and expanded waist measurements. Two bananas provide approximately 30 percent of the recommended daily vitamin C allowance.
Eating any fruit for breakfast on a daily basis instead of unhealthy processed products raises dietary fiber intake. Fiber is essential for good health, and it plays an important part in weight loss: foods with fiber take longer to digest, which helps to keep you feeling full. Like potassium, fiber also helps control blood sugar levels and reduces the risk of unhealthy snacking.
Whether eating two bananas for breakfast results in weight loss depends largely on whether you are swapping bananas for less healthy breakfast foods you have been customarily eating and what you eat during the remainder of the day. If you have been avoiding breakfast, eating bananas for breakfast is likely to support weight loss, because breakfast can prevent mid-morning hunger and help you make better choices when eating lunch.
In addition to eating bananas, start your meals with a healthy green salad or bowl of vegetable soup. According to research performed by "Volumetrics" author Dr. Barbara Rolls, study participants who added leafy greens and starchy vegetables to their meals typically ate 12 percent fewer total calories during the meal.

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