The banana is actually classified as a herb in some parts of the world. It is believed that the first people who ate bananas were the indigenous peoples of South America and Africa. They cooked it over open fires just like any other root vegetables. Can we call bananas a fruit or a vegetable? Let us find out!

What are bananas?

Banana is a fruit, and it belongs to the Musaceae family. It’s also known as plantain or plantain banana. The name “banana” comes from its shape which resembles that of an elongated oval with two parallel ridges on each side. This fruit has yellow skin and a white fleshy pulp inside. Banana contains starch, fibre, vitamin C, potassium, calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, copper, phosphorus, manganese, riboflavin, niacin, thiamine, folate, pantothenic acid, B6, and vitamin E.

The first banana was discovered in South America by Christopher Columbus in 1493. He called them the new apple because they were similar to apples. In 1780, Thomas Jefferson sent seeds of this fruit to France. Since then, the cultivation of banana plants has spread all over the world. Today, there are more than 100 countries where bananas can be grown.

The banana plant is a herbaceous perennial plant. It grows up to 1 meter high. Its leaves are long and narrow, and they grow alternately along the stem. The flowers are small and greenish-yellow. They appear in clusters at the end of the branches. The fruits are round or oval-shaped, about 2 inches wide.

Species of Bananas

There are many different species of bananas. Some are very popular like Cavendish, Gros Michel, and Williams. Others are less common but still have their own unique characteristics. Here are some of the most important ones:

Musa acuminate (A genome)

This is one of the oldest cultivated varieties. It originated in Southeast Asia. It is a diploid variety meaning that it has only two sets of chromosomes instead of four. It is used for making juice, flour, and ice cream.

Musa balbisiana (B genome)

This is another diploid variety. It is native to Indonesia. It is used for eating fresh and cooking.

Musa paradisiaca (AA genome)

This is a triploid variety. It originates from Africa. It is mostly found in East Africa.

Musa sapientum (AAA genome)

This is the biggest banana variety. It is native to India and Sri Lanka. It is not suitable for eating raw.

Musa textilis (ABB genome)

This variety is native to China. It is mainly used for making banana chips.

Musa zebrina (BBCC genome)

This is an octoploid variety. It originated from West Africa. It is used for breeding purposes.

Health Benefits of Banana


Bananas contain a lot of antioxidants. Antioxidants help fight free radicals. Free radicals are harmful molecules that cause damage to cells. These chemicals are formed when we breathe oxygen, eat food, and use energy. They may cause cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and other health problems.

High in Fiber

Bananas are rich in dietary fibre. Dietary fibre helps us stay healthy by keeping our digestive system clean. It helps keep cholesterol levels low. It also reduces blood pressure and prevents constipation.

Good Source Of Potassium

Potassium plays a vital role in maintaining fluid balance. It regulates muscle contractions and nerve impulses. Potassium deficiency causes fatigue, weakness, and irregular heartbeat. Bananas are good sources of potassium.

Fights Cancer

Studies show that people who eat bananas regularly have lower risks of developing colon cancer. Other studies suggest that the compounds in bananas may prevent breast, prostate, lung, and ovarian cancers.

Helps Prevent Diabetes

Bananas are loaded with vitamin B6 which helps regulate sugar metabolism. Vitamin B6 helps control insulin secretion and absorption. Insulin is needed to convert glucose into energy. If you don’t get enough insulin, your body will store excess glucose as fat. Excess fat can lead to type 2 diabetes.

Lowers Cholesterol Levels

The soluble fibres in bananas help reduce bad cholesterol while increasing good cholesterol. Studies show that consuming bananas daily can cut down total cholesterol by 10 per cent.

Improves Digestion

Bananas contain pectin, a substance that binds to mucus and improves digestion. Pectin also increases bile production. This makes the intestines more efficient at absorbing nutrients.

Promotes Weight Loss

Bananas are high in fibre. The soluble fibres in bananas make them filling. Soluble fibre slows down digestion so that fewer calories are absorbed.

Prevents Heart Disease

A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition shows that people who ate bananas every day had better cardiovascular function than those who didn’t.

Protects Against Stroke

A study published in Neurology showed that women who ate three or more servings of fruit per week had a 40 per cent lower risk of stroke compared to women who ate less than one serving of fruit per month.

Difference Between a Fruit and a Vegetable

Fruits are usually sweet and juicy. They grow on trees or bushes. Examples include apples, oranges, grapes, strawberries, kiwis, cherries, plums, peaches, apricots, mangoes, etc.

Vegetables are usually starchy and crunchy. They grow underground. Examples include potatoes, carrots, broccoli, spinach, peas, corn, cabbage, cauliflower, mushrooms, onions, garlic, etc.

Both fruits and vegetables provide important nutrients for our bodies. However, not all fruits are considered vegetables. For example, bananas are classified as fruit but they are also high in potassium. On the other hand, tomatoes are classified as vegetables but they contain a lot of water and fiber.

Is a Banana a Fruit or Vegetable?

The question of whether bananas are fruits or vegetables has been debated for decades. The fruit-vegetable debate is one that’s been going on since the beginning of time, and it all started with the first humans. It was probably around this time when we realized that there were many different types of food that could be eaten.

Some foods were thought to belong to either category. We decided that some foods belonged to both categories because they contained both starch and protein. Others were considered to be vegetables because they grew underground. Still, others were considered fruits because they grew above ground.

A banana is a fruit because it has seeds inside. Bananas are healthy and nutritious. They contain vitamins A, B6, C, E, K, folate, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, riboflavin, thiamine, vitamin D, and zinc. Bananas also provide fibre, which helps you feel full longer and keeps your digestive system working well.

Are Bananas Classified as Berries?

Berries are small fruits that grow on plants. There are hundreds of varieties of berries. They can be red, blue, black, yellow, purple, white, pink, orange, or even green. Strawberries, raspberries, cranberries, blueberries, and boysenberries are examples of common berries.

In recent years, the term “berry” has come to mean any berry-shaped fruit. This includes blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, and gooseberries. These fruits are often referred to as “bramble fruits.”

Bananas can be considered berries because they look like tiny berries. However, they don’t actually contain seeds. Instead, they contain a large amount of starch. In addition, bananas are very sweet and juicy.

They’re technically classified as fruits, but they’re really closer to vegetables than anything else Just like other berries, blueberries contain a lot of water! Bananas are actually halfway between berries and fruits; they look more like berries than fruits because their skin has an orange colour.

Vegetables like tomatoes and cucumbers contain water and carbohydrates, but they don’t actually look anything like berries at all. You’ll probably want to eat berries instead of fruits if you’re going to be calling them by their botanical name. There isn’t really any significant difference between the two fruits except that one has slightly larger seeds than the other.


Bananas are technically fruits as opposed to vegetables. As long as the seeds aren’t removed from the flesh before eating, then these little bundles of nutrients would definitely classify as berries. If you want to call bananas something else, feel free to do so. But make sure to keep in mind what kind of food they are. And remember: You better be careful about how much of those delicious bananas you eat, or you might end up getting fat. 

If you think about it, bananas aren’t really like any type of fruit we know today. They’re unique. They’re much sweeter than most other fruits. They’re also higher in calories than most fruits. If you are a huge fan of bananas, do read a lot about them and enjoy eating.

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