How much sodium is in a banana? Is it harmful?

Finding out the amount of sodium in foods you regularly consume is very important, especially if you have hypertension or a family history of heart disease. However, a fresh fruit like banana is extremely poor in sodium. So, you can continue enjoying your bananas without the worry for increased sodium intake.

Sodium in bananas

Bananas are very low in sodium. According to Fatsecret, single extra small, small, medium, or large serving of fresh banana fruit contain just 1 milligram of sodium each (1). An extra large banana on the other hand contains just 2 milligrams of sodium.

In terms of standard banana serving sizes, 1 oz contains no sodium, 100 grams contain 1 milligram of sodium, and 1 cup sliced or smashed contains just 2 milligrams of sodium.

Sodium in banana

Even though sodium has a very bad reputation, it is still required by the body. It performs some functions and plays a major role in maintaining fluid levels in the body. However, the body requires only about 1500 mg of sodium daily. While bananas cannot provide that amount, other foods we consume daily mostly exceed that amount, which is why most people are trying to monitor their sodium intake these days.

If a medium sized banana provides just 1 mg, then for you to reach your daily value for sodium only through consumption of bananas, you will have to eat about 1500 medium sized bananas, which is practically impossible. So, you can continue your intake of bananas without any fear of getting high amounts of sodium from it.

Now that you know banana consumption cannot alter your sodium intake significantly, what you should be concerned about is the sodium in foods you consume daily. Foods such as pizza, sandwiches, cheese, yeast bread, chicken, french fries, and rice, are those that can significantly increase the amount of sodium in your body.

Pizza for example, is a very popular food in the United States, with 1 out of every 8 people eating it on a given day. It is among the “salty six” foods outlined by the American Heart Association to add the most sodium to your diet. Just a slice of pizza with several toppings can contain more than half of your daily recommended dietary sodium. Now come to think of it, how many slices of pizza do you consume per day?

Other foods that make the “salty six” are breads and rolls, cold cuts and cured meats, sandwiches, soup, and chicken. Just a single sandwich or burger from a fast food restaurant can contain more than your body’s daily requirement for sodium.

If there foods you should worry about concerning sodium intake, then bananas are not one of them. Instead, you should start by worrying about your intake of “salty six”.

By Abbati

Abbati studied Biological sciences at Ahmadu Bello Univeristy, Zaria. He loves learning about the medicinal properties of foods, and the need to explore them!

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