Banana vs Energy Drinks for Physical Activity

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bananas

Energy drinks have made a very important place in performing sports and physical activities where one requires a large amount of energy quickly. However, is there a cheaper better option available for physically active people? We need an energy source that is quick to digest, natural to the body, and has no side effects. Research has proven that the best replacement for energy drinks is the banana. Banana is cheap and full of carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals. On the other hand, energy drinks contain certain undesirable substances such as aromas, coloring, and preservatives.

Harmful Effects Of Energy Drinks

We all know that carbohydrates are the most fundamental for the metabolism of our body since we drive energy from them. We require more energy during physical activities. Although energy drink provides instant energy it has no other digestible micro minerals. This leads to the depletion of some essential ingredients while performing physical activities, especially endurance events. The result can be improper nourishment of muscles leading to a lower performance of the muscles in the long run.

Healthy Replacement

Banana is a healthy alternative to energy drinks. It is nutritious and has an anti-inflammatory effect on muscles leading to efficient endurance performance and quick recovery. Research has shown that eating half a banana every 30 minutes during an endurance run or cycling lowers inflammation, reduces stressed metabolic profiles, and blocks genes that intensify inflammation. Sugar present in bananas is more digestible and thus friendlier to the body than an energy drink.

Other Benefits Of Banana

Banana contains resistant starch whose by-product blocks the conversion of certain carbohydrates into fuel. This forces the body to look for an alternative source of fuel which mostly is a fat store. Hence consuming bananas while trying to lose weight is the best option. It helps improve body composition and reduces the percentage of body fat.

Sports drinks have caffeine and salt besides other unhealthy mixes of processed sugar, preservatives, and artificial ingredients. This leads to an increase in blood pressure and heart rate. Excessive use of these drinks can develop into a chronic health problem. There have been few fatal cases where these drinks were excessively used. On the other hand, any quantity of bananas you consume is completely safe. Although too many bananas may lead to some temporary discomfort but have no long-term side effects. Being natural, the body simply rejects whatever is in excess.

How To Eat A Banana During Endurance Activity

An endurance activity requires a constant source of energy. Although at the start of the activity we have our reserves, it is believed that those stores start to deplete after 30 minutes and are not available after 60 minutes of the activity. We need to provide energy to continue performing for longer durations.

The best way of using bananas is to plan intake according to the digestion time required. Unlike sports drinks, it takes slightly longer to reach our blood. Hence one should consume one banana at least 45 minutes to one hour before the start of the event and half a banana every 30 minutes. This should take care of all the energy requirements. However, if someone feels half a banana is less, the quantity can be increased. It is good to consume a small quantity of water along with every ingestion as water soothes the digestion process.

Banana For Muscle Building

Banana is not a source of proteins and hence should not be substituted with protein intake. However, it contains essential micronutrients which promote the digestion of many forms of proteins. Hence, including bananas in the diet plan while building muscles is beneficial.

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