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Bananas are the most popular
fresh fruit in the United States.
They have a peel that comes off
easily, they ripen after they've
been picked, there is a generous
supply all year, and they are
inexpensive. Bananas have both a
high amount of carbohydrates as
well as potassium, which also
makes them the fruit of choice
for many athletes.
(Wellness Encyclopedia of Food
and Nutrition, 1992).
Avoid bananas with brown spots
that seem very soft. Select
those bananas with a nice color,
specific for the variety. Choose
fruit that is firm and free of
bruises. Best eating quality has
been reached when the solid
yellow skin color is speckled with
Bananas with green tips or with practically no yellow color have not
developed their full flavor. Bananas are overripe when they have a strong
To further ripen bananas leave at room temperature for a couple of days.
Once ripe you can store in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days. The peel may
turn brown in the refrigerator, but the fruit will not change.
The very popular yellow banana of Cavendish is the banana we see in grocery
stores. However, Plantains, Finger Bananas and Red Bananas are also popular
varieties. Most all have a soft texture when ripe.
Make Bananas Part of Your 5 A Day Plan
• Use sliced bananas in cereal, yogurt, or on a peanut butter sandwich.
• Carry bananas in your lunch or use as a snack.
• For a cool refreshing treat, cut a banana into chunks and put in the
freezer. Take out in a couple of hours and enjoy.
Banana Nut Smoothie
Makes 4 (1 cup) servings
Each serving equals one 5 A Day serving
Recipe source: Produce for Better Health
2 bananas, ripe
2 cups pineapple juice
2 Tbsp creamy peanut butter
2 tsp plain yogurt
1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
6 ice cubes
1 tsp nu