The Banana’s Annoying Little Strings Have Been Given a Name and Function

I have been eating bananas incorrectly for many years.  I don’t like to waste food, so I always peel my fruits and vegetables before preparing them or eating them as a snack.   This is not always incorrect, as peels typically have a bitter flavor.  To that end, you shouldn’t try anything out unless you’re prepared to face the consequences.

This also includes the string-like remnants left on the banana after peeling. I admit that I usually just flick them onto the peel and then discard them.  You shouldn’t throw them away; rather, you should eat them.

They may be the most beneficial part of the banana for your health, despite their unappealing appearance and bitter taste.

The technical name for these wacky strands is phloem bundles. They are a good source of potassium, fiber, vitamins A and B6, and even have a catchy name to boot. Phloem, a type of tissue present in all plants, is responsible for carrying nutrients to the fruit, where they can be used for healthy development (via the veins).

The phloem bundles have the added ability to judge when the fruit is at peak freshness.  If you cut open a banana and find that the phloem bundles have not yet spread their nutrients, the fruit is not yet fully ripe.

A banana’s peel contains just as much nutrition as the phloem bundles themselves. They are not only palatable, but also beneficial to one’s health.

There are significant amounts of vitamin B6, B12, magnesium, and potassium in just one banana peel. It’s a good source of protein and fiber, too.

Despite popular belief, many cultures around the world consume bananas in their peels.  The medicinal properties of banana peels have been utilized for decades in countries like India.

I feel your pain; the thought of biting into a whole banana, peel and all, does not appeal to me either.

Don’t forget the vitamins you’re throwing away every time you throw away a banana string.

What do you think?

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