Fuel Your Body
Photo by Richard Cowdrey via Flickr (cc)
You’ve just finished a hard dance rehearsal or performance and you feel great. Tired, but satisfied, you’re probably also hungry, but want to ensure your snack is quick and healthy. So what do you grab?
Try a banana!
Long touted as the number one fruit of the world’s leading athletes, a banana has a wealth of health benefits all wrapped up in one delicious package.
A banana, besides being tasty, offers a ton of important vitamins and nutrients. It contains three natural sugars, sucrose, fructose and glucose as well as fibre. The energy boost you get from it is therefore instant, but also sustained, so they’re a great snack to grab mid-rehearsal, if you need a little something to help you finish your class.
But that’s not the only way eating a banana does your body good. A banana contains lots of vitamins B6 and C, and iron as well as potassium, while still being low in salt.
Why does this matter?
In the exertion of your dance workout, you sweat out essentials like potassium and magnesium so after a workout you need to replenish. Potassium normalizes the heartbeat, sends oxygen to the brain and helps maintain water balance. It also regulates muscle contraction so helps to prevent cramping.
Bananas are easy to digest and are good for the stomach, as they cause your body to secret lots of goblet cells in your stomach lining. While this sounds off-putting, what it means is they help prevent against stomach problems by neutralizing the acidity of the stomach and reducing any stomach or colon irritation.
Comparing an apple and a banana, the health benefits of the banana are almost shocking: a banana has 4 times the protein, 3 times the phosophorus and significantly more carbohydrates, Vitamin A, iron and other essentials. This snack packs a punch!
Bananas also boast tryptophan, which is a protein that the body converts to serotonin, a happy-booster, so eating a banana is not only good for you, it can make you feel good as well. So, the next time you’re tired after a dance class or following a performance, grab a banana and get ready to feel great and re-charged!
By Katharine Harris
(published October 19, 2010)