by Jake Richardson
April 25, 2011

from Care2 Website

Spanish version



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 procedure.

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

from KnowledgeBase Website

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.

  • Anemia:

    High in iron, bananas can stimulate the production of hemoglobin in the blood and so helps in cases of anemia


  • Blood Pressure:

    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


  • Brain Power:

    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 more alert.


  • Constipation:

    High in fibre, including bananas in the diet can help restore normal bowel action, helping to overcome the problem without resorting to laxatives.


  • Depression:

    According to a recent survey undertaken by 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.


  • Hangovers:

    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.


  • Heartburn:

    Bananas have a natural antacid effect in the body; so if you suffer from heartburn, try eating a banana for soothing relief.


  • Morning Sickness:

    Snacking on bananas between meals helps to keep blood sugar levels up and avoid morning sickness.


  • Mosquito bites:

    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.


  • Nerves:

    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.


  • PMS:

    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 SAD sufferers because they contain the natural mood enhancer tryptophan.


  • Smoking:

    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.


  • Stress:

    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.


  • Strokes:

    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%!


  • Temperature Control:

    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.


  • Ulcers:

    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.


  • Warts:

    Those keen on natural alternatives swear that if you want to kill off a wart, take 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 many ills.


When you compare bananas to an apple, it has,

  • four times the protein

  • twice the carbohydrate

  • three times the phosphorus

  • 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 away!"