Most friends and acquaintances of mine know I dislike bananas. I have had an aversion to them ever since I was a wee lad. To combat the illnesses I had had, my mother decided to provide me with a very delectable diet of ginger ale, crackers, and bananas. I stomached the ginger ale, but it became a beverage I rarely consumed when my thirst became untameable. In the recent years, ginger ale has returned to my drink repertoire. If it’s a selection of sodas at a party or at my girlfriend’s grandmother’s abode, I will opt for Canada Dry or Vernor’s.
Bananas, on the other hand, have remained on my “don’t eat” list, which is quite small, to be fair. For some reason, I never enjoyed the taste when I was sick. I never could enjoy the strong smell as a child, and I associated the food with being gravely ill, with vomiting and stomachaches (not to mention diarrhea). Each time I could catch the smell as I grew from elementary school to high school, the hunger pains I had would faintly dissipate. I would not go near banana bread, banana splits, banana-flavored Runts. While working for a catering company, we were given some leftover wedding cake after one particular reception. A few bites into it, and I knew something was wrong with it. It tasted not like vanilla or lemon, or some other delightful wedding-cake flavor. There were pieces of something, a fruit. Yes, one of the layers of the cake was banana. I ran to a garbage can and spit out all the cake I had been chewing, and I threw the remaining piece of cake on my plate after it.
Smoothies be damned, at least those that MUST put bananas as one of the mix-ins. Don’t people realize that some individuals are allergic to the fruit? It would be better off telling people that I’m allergic to bananas, not that I have an aversion to them. Or it would be nice if I were truly allergic. And as you can tell from the wedding cake incident – my most recent attempt to try them – the bad taste hasn’t changed for me. I will not allow bananas into me.
One of the most common replies to my declaration that I do not like bananas (apart from “WHY?”) is: “But where do you get your potassium?” A few years ago I did some research online to see which foods provided equal or more potassium than a single banana. The information I found was surprising; a lot of the foods I really like have a large amount of potassium in them depending on the serving. I have provided a collection of these for you now. You can easily find this information online – so I won’t cite. Whatever. If you do a Google search, these websites will be first on the list anyway.
One large banana contains about 487mg of potassium. Nice, right? But, here are some other healthy alternatives:
- Baked potato, with skin, 1 medium (844mg). (A sweet potato has even more!)
- Avocado, 1/2 medium (742mg)
- White beans, canned, 1/2 cup (595mg)
- Yogurt, fat-free, plain, 8 oz (579mg)
- Tomato juice, 1 cup (535mg)
- Orange juice, fresh, 1 cup (496mg)
- Cantaloupe, diced, 1 cup (482mg)
And on another site, more food with a high level of potassium (more than 225 mg. per 1/2 cup serving):
All meats, poultry and fish are high in potassium.
Apricots (fresh more so than canned)
Oranges and orange juice
So, yes, I am getting enough potassium without bananas!