According to nutritionist Susie Burrell, the peel of the fruit is packed with nutrients, including potassium, magnesium, Vitamin B6 and Vitamin C.
“At a time in which minimising food waste is the top of mind for many, it seems that there is no better time to talk about the skins of bananas and all the things you can do with them,” she explains via her website.
“Specifically, bananas with bright yellow skins have a higher proportion of antioxidants associated with anti-cancer effects while green skins (less ripe bananas) are particularly rich in the amino acid tryptophan which is associated with good sleep quality. Green banana skins are also rich in resistance starch, the special type of fibre known to benefit gut health.”
In fact, eating the skin can increase your overall fibre intake by up to 10 per cent, helping with bowel regularity and potentially weight loss too. “You will get almost 20 per cent more Vitamin B6 and almost 20 per cent more Vitamin C,” Susie adds.
One caveat: don’t eat them as is. Rather, she recommends cooking the skin (say, in curries, baked goods or stews) to break down the cell walls and make all that goodness easier to absorb.
“Blending the skin into recipes or smoothies is the most practical way to use them. Here you will increase the volume and nutritional content of recipes with minimal change to taste and texture of the cooking. For example, if you make your smoothie with a whole banana chop the ends of the skin, chop into small pieces and simply blend with the rest of the smoothie.”