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Plantains are edible vegetables, which are generally used for cooking. This is different from the soft and sweet banana. They are often firmer than bananas; and have less sugar which is a very good choice for diabetic patients. Bananas are often eaten raw while plantains should be cooked or otherwise processed before they are eaten.   Plantains are common in tropical regions, and they are nutritious and offer several health benefits in addition to their delicious flavour. Plantains have been used for centuries as a curative food – thus one of the best kept secrets to youthful looks.   Partially ripe plantain could be boiled and enjoyed with fish stew. Plantain chips, fried plantain /dodo etc are common snack made from plantain. These however should be eaten sparingly because it tends to contain a high level of trans-fat which causes free radicals in the body, thus often detrimental to the health.   To benefit optimally from the goodness what plantain has to offer, it is important you use the right cooking method and most importantly, always choose fairly ripe plantains instead of the overly ripe ones which are high in sugar.   When cooking plantain, grill or broil them instead of frying. This way no nutrient is lost in anyway. Also steam plantain instead of boiling to reduce the loss of nutrients. Below are some of the great benefits of eating plantain.   THREE HEALTH BENEFITS OF PLANTAIN: 1. Internal Benefits Plantains have a number of internal health benefits. Plantains, like bananas, are a quick source of energy, according to HealthGuidance.org. Plantains can ease symptoms of a variety of ailments, including arthritis, gout, anemia, allergies, kidney stones, tuberculosis and urinary disorders. They promote digestion. This is because of the highfibre content. One plantain supplies several grams of fibre to your diet. Fibre is an important nutrient because it helps decrease your chances of suffering from heart disease, diabetes and certain cancers, such as colon cancer. Fibre also helps prevent constipation by keeping your intestinal tract working the way it should.   Plantain is also high in Calcium. Your bones, teeth, nails and muscles rely on an adequate intake of calcium to maintain their health and their strength. Plantains supply good amount of calcium to your body. More essential for girls and women, calcium contributes to strong bones, which helps prevent breaks and fractures and osteoporosis (a progressive bone disease that is characterized by a decrease in bone mass and density which can lead to an increased risk of fracture), as you age. Calcium also aids in keeping your teeth healthy so you are less likely to experience cavities, periodontal disease and teeth that fall out easily.  2. External Benefits Plantains are used in a variety of skin treatments. Plantains are a great source of beta-carotene, which helps produce sufficient amounts of Vitamin A which is essential for eye health as well as normal growth. A diet lacking in Vitamin A can result in difficulty seeing in the dark, dry eyes, eye infection and unhealthy skin. Another benefits of plantain that gives external values is its content of    Vitamin C. According to a research, one plantain supplies you with 20mg of Vitamin C in each 3.5 oz serving. This translates to between 40mg and 60mg of Vitamin C, depending on the size of your plantain. Consuming enough Vitamin C helps your body fight off infections that can lead to sickness while also promoting healthy gums, teeth and skin. Getting plenty of Vitamin C also helps your body absorb the iron you consume from your food so you are able to produce red blood cells and provide oxygen throughout your body. 3. Mental Health Benefits According to HealthGuidance.org, plantains are mood enhancer because they contain the amino acid tryptophan. They can also help people who suffer from seasonal affective disorder. Plantains are high in magnesium and potassium, which can help the body and mind deal with the symptoms of withdrawal from a habit-forming substance.   NUTRITION FACTS OF PLANTAIN                                                              AMOUNT PER 100 GRAMS Calories                                                                                                    122                                                                                                            % daily value Dietary fibre                                                                                           9% Potassium                                                                                               14% Sodium 4mg                                                                                           0% Total carbohydrate                                                                                10% Sugar                                                                                                      15g Protein                                                                                                    2% Total fat 0.4                                                                                           0%  
Vitamin A 22%
Calcium 0%
Vitamin D 0%
Vitamin B-12 0%
Vitamin C 30%
Iron 3%
Vitamin B-6 15%
Magnesium 9%

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