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When it comes to banana’s many of us go well.. literally “banana’s” for them; after all they are the nations favorite fruit and the original 100 calorie snack! Sometimes we often look at fruit and think “oh it’s far too ripe” or “oh damn that fruit is too green!” which is a shame because quite often different stages of a fruits maturity have different benefits.


  • Benefits: One benefit of green bananas is the high resistant starch content.  For anyone trying to avoid food with high sugar content, green bananas are an option whereas yellow bananas are not.  So those suffering from Type 2 Diabetes can eat the unripe fruit while maybe ripened bananas are not as compatible. Unripe bananas also have pro-biotic bacteria, a friendly bacterium that helps with good colon health.  In addition, green bananas also help you absorb nutrients better, particularly calcium.
  • Drawbacks: Because antioxidant levels actually INCREASE as a banana ages, unripe bananas are lower in this category.  Also green bananas may cause some bloating and gas due to the higher resistant starch content.


  • Benefits: Because the resistant starch changes to simple sugar when a banana ripens, yellow bananas are easier to digest.  The higher glycemic index of ripe bananas shows that they are digested quickly.  Bananas also have higher levels of antioxidants as they ripen. One interesting fact about fully ripened bananas is that they produce a substance called TNF (Tumor Necrosis Factor).  This means that ripe bananas have anti-cancer qualities as they combat abnormal cells.  The more dark patches a banana has, the higher its immunity enhancement quality will be.
  • Drawbacks: Studies show that there is SOME MICRONUTRIENT LOSS that happens as a banana ripens.  To lessen the amount of vitamins and minerals lost, its better to store and ripen bananas in the refrigerator.   Also the high sugar content makes ripe bananas something Type 2 Diabetics should avoid.

The Bottom Line: There are benefits on both sides.  You could eat unripened bananas or ripened bananas and get the benefits of either one.  The only difference is that for Type 2 Diabetics and anyone trying to avoid excess sugar.

comparison of the two

Image Source: Ian Ransley/Flickr

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One comment on “Ripe vs. Unripe Bananas: Which are Better for You?”

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Chris Walshe
4 Months Ago

Congratulations on the grammar elucidation . Unhappily for every corrected grammatical idiocy , a thousand ( or ten thousand ) go through unchallenged. Couple that with opinions expressed on matters politic , and my personal take is - I\'ve lived too long . Keith Richard had it correct at the week-end .He goes into a restaurant . an adjoining table has ten people ( at least half of them are on the phone . What is that about ?

Millenials, \'phones, Trump - I\'m checking out . Come Friendly Bombs - as Betjeman said !

7 Months Ago

I like bananas with a little bit of dark spots on them. But I\'m not in agreement with most people on that. I came across this interesting poll. It polls people on what banana type they like best: http://www.wordbloopers.com/banana-poll/

1 Years Ago

"Bananas" does not need an apostrophe.

1 Years Ago

There is no truth to the TNF in bananas. you should validated your sources before you post this unfounded, hippie BS. What is this, Fox news???? lol

2 Years Ago

Excellent article. The only grammatical error is using an apostrophe to indicate the plural. The plural of banana is bananas, not banana\'s. In English grammar the apostrophe is called a possessive determiner and is used like this: Nancy\'s blog, John\'s car. Using the apostrophe for plural is now widely used by the Internet Generation who learn wrong and bad grammar from each other.

2 Years Ago

Such terrible grammar. This writing is literally turning me into a banana is.

12 Jul 2016

LOL this made me chuckle for a solid 4 minutes

Odd Key
2 Years Ago

"There is not a single double-blind clinical trial to show that bananas induce a TNF-alpha response in humans. And one more point to remember: bananas do not produce TNF. It is simply an evolutionary impossibility, unless through some amazing instance of evolutionary convergence, the banana plant evolved the ability to produce the TNF molecule for a completely different purpose for the banana plant. This would violate several principles of evolution, since there are reasons why the TNF molecule evolved in mammals and not in plants."


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