At the first glance, plantains look like bananas. While bananas and plantains have similar nutritious qualities, plantains are more nutritious than bananas. More than 120 countries including India, Uganda and Colombia grow plantains. Plantains are starchier, contain less sugar than bananas and can be added to many cooking recipes. Unlike bananas, plantains are typically cooked before eating. Bananas are eaten as a fruit, while plantains are considered a vegetable. One can replace plantains for potatoes in any recipe. Plantains are available year-round since it does not have a particular growing season. Plantains can be found in green, yellow or red/ black variety.
Nutrition Facts: one cup cooked:
230 calories 62.3 grams carbohydrates 1.6 grams protein 0.4 grams fat 4.6 grams fiber 1,818IU Vitamin A ( 36%) 21.8 milligrams Vitamin C (36%) 930 milligrams potassium ( 27%) 0.5 milligrams Vitamin B6 ( 24%) 64 milligrams magnesium (16%) 1.2 milligrams iron ( 6%) (Source: Dr. Axe)
As we can see from the above information, plantains are a great source of vitamin A, B6, C, magnesium, potassium, etc. Apart from these vitamins and minerals, plantains and bananas contain serotonin, an important chemical responsible for a number of brain functions including mood and sleeping. Our happiness may depends on the amount of serotonin in the brain.
One can literally feel happier by eating plantains and bananas!
Plantains are a natural remedy for:
High blood pressure (due to potassium)
Fighting free radical damage (Vitamin C)
Skin and eye health (Vitamin A)
Healthy brain function (Vitamin B6)
Macular degeneration ( Vitamin B6)
Migraines, insomnia and depression (magnesium and serotonin)
Plantains have sweet and astringent ( Kashay) taste or properties. According to Ayurveda, astringent or Kashay food is recommended to balance Pitta and Kapha Dosha. A tea made from the leaves can be used to treat diarrhea. Or simply try this delicious and quick recipe for plantain chips.
Recipe- Plantain chips: Anytime ‘pick me up snack!’
1 Green plantain, peeled and cut in round pieces according to desired thickness
2 Tbs Coconut oil or ghee
Salt and pepper to taste
Heat a medium skillet, add the coconut oil then the cut plantain.
Let cook for a minute
Turn and cook for another minute. Keep turning till both sides are lightly brown or brown if want them a bit crunchy.
Add salt and pepper, toss well
Remove plantain chips from heat and serve warm or cool
Note: if you are allergic to bananas, you may be allergic to plantains.