by Jake Richardson
April 25, 2011
The slippery yellow skins are better known as a comedic prop, but
now research has demonstrated they have a capacity to absorb lead
and copper from river water. Previously, other plant materials such
as peanut shells and coconut fibers had been tried, but minced
banana peels did the trick better.
Researchers also found minced banana peels could be used repeatedly
to purify water contaminated by industrial plants and farms - up to
eleven times - and still be effective.
In their study paper titled “Banana
Peel Applied to the Solid Phase Extraction of Copper and Lead from
River Water - Preconcentration of Metal Ions with a Fruit Waste”
they also noted the very low cost of banana peels and the fact there
is no need to prepare them chemically for the water purification
They theorized the acid content of the peels make them a good
material for absorbing the heavy metals.
Heavy metal pollution in rivers and
streams can be absorbed by species such as mollusks and algae, and
eventually enter the food chain where it contaminates fish and
frogs. They can make aquatic species sick and die, so an effective
and affordable means of removing them is very beneficial.
A river in the Philippines suffered enough industrial pollution,
including heavy metal poisoning, that it was recognized as
biologically inactive. Restoring a
river to it’s original natural health is obviously far more costly
than preventing the pollution from damaging it in the first place,
if it is even possible to restore it.
Using materials produced naturally is also helpful because they are
less likely to result in extra contaminants being introduced into
the polluted area. Some remediation projects use manmade chemicals
to address the pollution and risk additional contamination.
A very obvious example is the
use of chemical dispersants in the
Gulf of Mexico after the recent huge oil spill. Some say their use
only added to the marine contamination, and there isn’t enough
long-term data for gauging the overall impact of mixing that much
oil and dispersant on the ecosystem health and for humans.
Gustavo Castro, Ph.D., Universidade Estadual Paulista in São
Paulo was one of the lead researchers. Funding for the research was
granted by the Sao Paulo Foundation.
Who Said Bananas Are Not Good For You?
May 28, 2007
Containing three natural sugars - sucrose, fructose and glucose
combined with fiber - a banana gives an instant, sustained and
substantial boost of energy.
Research has proven that just two bananas provide enough energy for
a strenuous 90-minute workout. No wonder the banana is the number
one fruit with the world's leading athletes.
But energy isn't the only way a banana can help us keep fit. It can
also help overcome or prevent a substantial number of illnesses and
conditions, making it a must to add to our daily diet.
A few people have a slight problem with the digestion of bananas,
the simple answer, even though it sounds strange, is to sprinkle a
little Pepper on the banana before eating, it works wonders.
High in iron, bananas can
stimulate the production of hemoglobin in the blood and so
helps in cases of anemia
This unique tropical fruit is
extremely high in potassium yet low in salt, making it the
perfect to beat blood pressure. So much so, the U.S. Food and
Drug Administration has just allowed the banana industry to
make official claims for the fruit's ability to reduce the
risk of blood pressure and stroke
200 students at a Twickenham
(Middlesex) school were helped through their exams this year
by eating bananas at breakfast, break, and lunch in a bid to
boost their brain power. Research has shown that the
potassium-packed fruit can assist learning by making pupils
High in fibre, including bananas
in the diet can help restore normal bowel action, helping to
overcome the problem without resorting to laxatives.
According to a recent survey
MIND amongst people suffering from depression,
many felt much better after eating a banana. This is because
bananas contain tryptophan, a type of protein that the body
converts into serotonin, known to make you relax, improve
your mood and generally make you feel happier.
One of the quickest ways of
curing a hangover is to make a banana milkshake, sweetened
with honey. The banana calms the stomach and, with the help
of the honey, builds up depleted blood sugar levels, while
the milk soothes and re-hydrates your system.
Bananas have a natural antacid
effect in the body; so if you suffer from heartburn, try
eating a banana for soothing relief.
Snacking on bananas between
meals helps to keep blood sugar levels up and avoid morning
Before reaching for the insect
bite cream, try rubbing the affected area with the inside of
a banana skin. Many people find it amazingly successful at
reducing swelling and irritation.
Bananas are high in B vitamins
that help calm the nervous system.
Overweight and at work?
Studies at the Institute of
Psychology in Austria found pressure at work leads to
gorging on comfort food like chocolate and crisps. Looking
at 5,000 hospital patients, researchers found the most obese
were more likely to be in high-pressure jobs. The report
concluded that, to avoid panic-induced food cravings, we
need to control our blood sugar levels by snacking on high
carbohydrate foods every two hours to keep levels steady.
Forget the pills - eat a banana.
The vitamin B6 it contains regulates blood glucose levels,
which can affect your mood.
Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD):
Bananas can help
because they contain the natural mood enhancer tryptophan.
Bananas can also help people
trying to give up smoking. The B6, B12 they contain, as well
as the potassium and magnesium found in them, help the body
recover from the effects of nicotine withdrawal.
Potassium is a vital mineral,
which helps normalize the heartbeat, sends oxygen to the
brain and regulates your body's water balance. When we are
stressed, our metabolic rate rises, thereby reducing our
potassium levels. These can be rebalanced with the help of a
high-potassium banana snack.
According to research in "The
New England Journal of Medicine," eating bananas as part of
a regular diet can cut the risk of death by strokes by as
much as 40%!
Many other cultures see bananas
as a "cooling" fruit that can lower both the physical and
emotional temperature of expectant mothers. In Thailand, for
example, pregnant women eat bananas to ensure their baby is
born with a cool temperature.
The banana is used as the
dietary food against intestinal disorders because of its
soft texture and smoothness. It is the only raw fruit that
can be eaten without distress in over-chronicler cases. It
also neutralizes over-acidity and reduces irritation by
coating the lining of the stomach.
Those keen on natural
alternatives swear that if you want to kill off a
a piece of banana skin and place it on the wart, with the
yellow side out. Carefully hold the skin in place with a
plaster or surgical tape!
A banana really is a natural remedy for
When you compare bananas to an apple, it
four times the protein
twice the carbohydrate
three times the
five times the vitamin A and iron
twice the other
vitamins and minerals
It is also rich in potassium and is one of
the best value foods around.
Maybe its time to change that well-known
phrase so that we say,
"A banana a day keeps the doctor