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Why Do Bananas Cause Indigestion?

By Chris Sherwood ; Updated July 27, 2017

Introduction

Bananas have a host of healthful benefits when added to a regular diet of fruits and vegetables. Bananas are low calorie snacks at under 150 calories for a medium sized fruit. They also pack a large dose of potassium, a needed nutritional component for keeping healthy. However, bananas can also causes indigestion problems in those with sensitive digestive systems.

Starch

Before bananas are fully ripened, they contain a fair amount of starch. According to the European Food Information Counsel, some raw bananas may have a starch content of as much as 25 percent. Unfortunately, the human digestive system has a difficult time breaking down these banana starches. The left over starch can then cause putrefaction in the intestines.

Putrefaction

Putrefaction is the decomposition of undigested food byproducts in the intestines. When banana starches reach the intestines undigested, the begin to break down and decompose. As they decompose they release gases. As these gasses build up in the intestines they can cause bloating, gas, and indigestion.

Avoidance

To avoid getting indigestion from bananas, only eat bananas that are fully ripened. As the banana ripens, the starch is converted into digestible substances such as glucose and dextrin. These substances are easily digested before they reach intestines, lowering the chances of putrefaction.

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