Can green bananas really help you lose weight?

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Let’s be completely honest… Dr. Oz is a little weird, no? I mean is he even a real doctor? Now you may be thinking, if you hate Dr. Oz so much why were you watching the show? Well you see, I don’t have cable and my antennae allows me only a few channels, which includes the network that plays the Dr. Oz show.

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It really caught my attention when I overheard him saying that green (completely unripe) bananas can attribute to weight loss. Eating 2 a week, to be exact. His reasoning was that ripe bananas have a higher sugar content, which makes sense. But even with that considered, how would green bananas help? Wouldn’t it be the same thing to just eat something else – anything else – with less sugar than a ripe banana? If they truly do play some role in weight loss then there must be more to it than just being better by sugar comparison…

First of all, the reputation of a perfectly ripe and yellow banana need not be tarnished by their greener infant state. They still help you lose and maintain weight and offer plenty of nutrition benefits. They’re loaded with potassium and magnesium, both good for keeping blood pressure in check. Generally, fruit isn’t the best source of vitamin B6, but bananas are the exception with more than 30% of the recommended daily amount in a single serving.

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After looking into it, the difference it seems, is resistance starch. It’s the natural resistance starch in green bananas that give them that slightly tart, starchy taste. And, along with these other resistance starchy foods, they may actually enhance fat burning by breaking down stored fat to be used as an energy source. HUH.

Okay, so perhaps there is something to be said for the green banana. But at the end of the day, I feel bananas in general are a great addition to your diet.

And side note, if you have any ripe bananas you no longer want to eat, I recently made these sugarless banana breakfast cookies and they are sooo good. I added natural peanut butter and protein powder. If you do want them to have a kick of sweetness you can add chocolate flavoured protein powder.

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“Everything in Moderation” is Easier Said Than Done

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It seems like the simplest, easiest thing to do – and we hear it constantly, “everything in moderation”. The concept is great, but in practice it isn’t always as easy as it sounds. Especially during the holidays. Offices fill up with cakes and cookies and delicious treats,  parties start popping up in our calendars, which means boozing and floating appetizer trays aplenty. When food and drinks are free and seemingly endless, it’s easy to go crazy. I’ve noticed a lot of people tend to become really diligent about their diet and exercise routine during the weeks approaching, and the ones immediately following the holiday season. Likely in an attempt to undo the damage. Dieting in spurts and then going on benders is the total opposite of moderation, but admit you’ve done this right before a vacation or holiday season…

“I’ve got to work out and eat right so I look good in my bathing suit, so that I can drink my face off and live at a buffet for 7 days!”

SO… What to do. I think the easiest way is eat real and organic foods as often as possible, and avoid stuff that was made in a lab:

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If this becomes routine, then portioning, calorie counting and dieting aren’t even factors anymore. What screws us over is too much restriction, but there are some ways to make all this easier and eliminate “dieting”.

Treating yourself is not cheating, and if you think about it that way, you’re totally changing the psychological aspects of your eating. Just work treats into your regular plan, you’ve earned it. You’ll also be making it something that’s normal and not something to feel guilty about later, lessening the chances of bingeing.

Even better, is finding healthier versions of foods you love. Bake cookies and desserts sweetened with maple syrup. Or if you crave savory over sweet, make your own sweet potato fries with olive oil and sea salt (so good).

Sidenote from my naturopath:

“If sugar is your main craving that you struggle with maintaining moderation, it may also mean that there is an imbalance in your intestinal flora, in particular too much yeast. In this case, a yeast cleanse to re-balance, will greatly minimize your need for sweets, and help you to find a better balance.”

And here are a few healthy but-might-not-seem-healthy recipes, the best kind: