Bananas are a highly popular and healthy snack that is often eaten for breakfast. However, in some situations, people do have slight heartburn after eating a banana. So, are bananas acidic? Do they help in acid reflux reduction? We did some research and came up with an answer we would like to share with you.
The short answer is, yes, bananas are slightly acidic. They have a pH level of 4.5 to 6.6, and every food that has an index below seven is considered acidic. However, they can have a positive effect on acid reflux and ease its symptoms, definitely more than their green counterparts. In this article, we will cover the nutritional value of bananas and go in-depth about their benefits and drawbacks. There is a lot to cover, so let us start without further ado.
Are Bananas Acidic or Alkaline?
As we already mentioned, bananas have a pH level of 4.5 to 6.6, and since anything below 7 is considered acidic, they fall in that category. The exact pH level of bananas entirely depends on how ripe they are. A ripe banana has an index of 6.5 to 6.6 which is almost neutral and is considered mildly acidic.
On the other hand, a banana that is not ripe has a pH level of 4.5 to 5.2, which is also acidic. The acidity of bananas comes from several sources, such as succinic acid, citric acid, malic acid, and ascorbic acid (vitamin C). All of these acids make the bananas the way we know them and give them their characteristic flavor and smell.
Can Bananas Aid in Acid Reflux Reduction?
Indeed, they can. Acid reflux is a condition that occurs when stomach acid moves up into the esophagus, which is a common occurrence when eating a large and heavy meal or drinking coffee or alcohol.
Bananas can help reduce these symptoms since they are rich in potassium, which is a natural antacid, thus helping in a great way in acid reflux reduction.
In addition, bananas contain fiber, which assists in promoting regularity in bowel movement and aids in preventing constipation. This is very important since constipation can make acid reflux symptoms even worse, so eating bananas, especially ripe ones, can help your digestive system function normally.
Moreover, bananas are considered a low-fat food, and fatty foods are known for making acid reflux worse. By eating bananas, you can control fatty food intake while also reducing the risk of acid reflux.
Can Bananas Give You Heartburn?
Bananas typically do not give people heartburn, but if you eat them in excessive amounts, you may experience it to a minor degree. This varies from person to person, as some people have an exceptionally low tolerance to acidic foods.
As you probably already know, heartburn is a condition that occurs when stomach acid moves up into the esophagus, and it is something that happens after overeating or drinking higher amounts of coffee or alcohol.
Although bananas are almost neutral on the pH scale, especially the ripe ones, their acid concentration can rise in your stomach when you consume them too much. Once they mix with acidic stomach juice, you can get heartburn, so make sure to consume them moderately.
What Benefits Come With Eating Bananas?
Aside from helping with symptoms of acid reflux, bananas are a nutrient-rich food that comes with a wide variety of health benefits. To paint you a better picture of everything good bananas can do for your body, we made a list of some crucial benefits in the section below.
Bananas Have High Nutritional Value
Bananas are a type of fruit that can fulfill your dietary needs while also keeping the calorie count in check. The whole package without any fat provides a total calorie count of 112. Since it is rich in potassium, folate, vitamin C, and fiber, it is a fantastic snack with high nutritional gains.
They Promote Better Digestion
Given the fact that bananas are rich in fibers such as pectin, your gut will stay healthy when consuming them. The fibers prevent constipation and keep bowel movement in check, which, long-term, prevents risks of diverticulitis. Some studies also found that these fibers also reduce the risk of colon cancer.
They Promote Weight Loss
A medium-sized banana has enough nutritional value to keep your hunger at bay. Another great thing about this food is that it can keep you full at only 126 calories. The fibers add more juice to your diet, which reduces hunger and helps you maintain a steady weight. Dieticians across the globe often recommend the banana diet since it is a proven weight-loss food.
They Promote Cardiovascular Health
Bananas are rich in potassium, which is a proven ingredient in reducing the risk of cardiovascular disorders such as blood pressure and stroke. In addition, the magnesium and folate in bananas are important contributors to the overall health and well-being of a body.
You Can Get Them Pretty Much Anywhere
Bananas are a fruit that you can buy pretty much anywhere year-round. You can eat them raw or add them to ice creams, smoothies, cakes, shakes, oatmeal, or granola. The possibilities are truly endless with this fruit, and the fact that they are easily accessible makes them that much more attractive.
Bananas – Nutritional Facts
- Bananas are an excellent source of dietary potassium. They are also rich in fiber, vitamin C, and vitamin B6.
- Potassium helps in the regulation of blood pressure. It also plays an important role in nerve function and muscle contraction.
- The fiber in bananas prevents constipation. It also makes you feel fuller after eating, which promotes weight loss.
- Vitamin C in bananas aids you in protecting your cells from damage. It also has applications in wound healing and bone growth.
- Vitamin B6 in bananas plays a role in energy metabolism and immune functions. It is also known for relieving symptoms of anxiety and depression.
As you can see, bananas are fantastic fruit that delivers a wide variety of benefits when implemented into a diet. They will make you feel fuller, and since they are low-calorie food, they can also aid in promoting weight loss.
However, what is the most important thing about this article is that they can aid in the reduction of acid reflux due to their high level of potassium. They are acidic but are beneficial in numerous ways. Just remember to consume them moderately, and you will certainly start feeling the benefits they provide over time.
Steve is a certified trainer with more than 10 years of training experience and he holds a Master’s in Sports Science. Prior to Boston Rock Gym, Steve worked for two years as a personal trainer.