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Banana vs Avocado - Health impact and Nutrition Comparison

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Banana
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Avocado

Introduction

In this article, we are going to compare banana and avocado fruits and their nutritional contents. Avocados are fruits, and bananas are classified as fruits and vegetables. These two products are different in many ways; nutrition, appearance, and taste. Nevertheless, they still have certain similarities; these two are extremely healthy, cheap, and tasty.

Varieties

Bananas are known as fruits and vegetables because they belong to the Musa genus (Musa acuminate) [1]. Avocados (Persea americana) belong to the Persea genus are classified as a member of the flowering plant species [2]. The avocado fruit has been the main food for the people of Central America. There are many different types of these fruits. The most common banana species are Cavendish Bananas and Lady's Finger Bananas. All avocados trace to either Guatemalan, Mexican, or West Indian origin.

Nutrition

Nutritionally these two fruits are different. To understand the difference between them have a look at our nutrition infographic below. 

Calories

Overall, avocados contain more calories, and hold proteins and fat, each avocado has about 160 calories, and this is two times more than bananas.

Each avocado contains 684 KJ per 100g, while each banana contains 371 KJ per 100g. Here again, the amount of food energy in avocado is two times higher than in bananas.

Vitamins

Bananas and avocados are rich in vitamins. These fruits contain different vitamins, in different amounts, and have very little in common.

Avocados are richer in vitamin K, B2, B3, B5. The amount of Vitamin K in avocados is 40 times more than in bananas. The level of saturated fat in avocados is higher than in bananas, which means this fruit is less healthy in the diet. On the other hand, bananas contain more Vitamin B6 than avocados. Both fruits completely lack Vitamins D and Vitamin B 12 [3]. 

 Minerals 

Overall, avocados are rich in minerals. This fruit contains more Potassium, Manganese, and Zinc. Avocados contain 4 times more Zinc than bananas. On the other hand, the level of Sodium in bananas is higher than in avocados [4] [5].  

Potassium  

Potassium is an important mineral. It may help to reduce the risk of kidney stones. An avocado has more potassium than a banana. The amount of Potassium in these two fruits does not differ much, however, one medium-sized avocado has 13.86 mg Potassium, while bananas contain 10.23 mg of this mineral [6] [7].

Sugar

Now let’s talk about the total amount of sugars, including glucose, fructose, lactose, etc. Avocados contain more sugar than bananas. Each avocado contains 28g sugar per 100 g, while each banana contains 12.23g per 100 g [8] [9].

 

Glycemic Index 

The glycemic values of avocados and bananas are estimated to be 15 and 51 respectively. The difference is big, isn't it? These numbers show us that bananas have a higher glycemic index than avocados. That means bananas quickly cause increases in blood glucose levels. According to studies, avocados fall under the category of having a low GI value.

Acidity

 For many of us, acidity is one of the main health issues. Moreover, in our daily meals, we try to avoid acid reflux. In this case, avocados are low-acid fruits, the level of acidity in avocados is about 4.95, and bananas acidity level is almost the same, it is about 5.

Weight Loss                                        

According to studies, foods that contain a high level of fiber or fat can help you decrease the risk of high blood pressure, feel full longer and satisfied, which reduces the total number of calories that you eat. In this case, avocados contain two times more fiber, than bananas. A middle-sized avocado contains 7 g fiber per 100 g, while a medium banana contains 3.07 g of fiber. The recommended daily intake is 25 g. Although eating these fruits can’t directly lead to weight loss, some of the components of these fruits can help reduce bloating and replace processed sugars [6] [10].

Health Benefits

These fruits are extremely healthy and have many health benefits. Their potential health benefits include excluding the risk of depression and protection against cancer.

 Cardiovascular Health 

Have you ever wondered what fruit to eat to have a healthy heart? The answer is banana and avocados․ Try to have banana and avocado smoothies once in a while to be healthy.  Bananas are rich in potassium, which keeps electricity flowing throughout your body. That is required to keep your heart beating [11].  On the other hand, the majority of the fat in an avocado is monounsaturated fat, which may help lower ("bad") cholesterol. That helps to keep your heart healthier. This entire means, these fruits are good for your heart [12].

Besides all this, avocados also have oleic acid that is great for inflammation [13].

Anti-aging Effect

Did you know there are things that you can do to keep yourself looking youthful for as long as possible? One of those things to stop the aging clock is to eat fruit. And here we have an absolute favorite. Avocados are rich in Vitamins, especially, Vitamin E and B-complex, both wonderfully nourishing for your skin, moreover, the potassium that avocado contains helps keep your skin moisturized and hydrated [17].

Cancer

Carotenoids are plant pigments, which have an important antioxidant function of deactivating free radicals that can damage cells by reacting with other molecules. People who eat foods containing carotenoids get protective health benefits as well 

Phytochemical compounds such as carotenoids (lycopene and beta-carotene), separated from some species of avocados may activate apoptosis in some cancer cell lines. Simply put, avocados may help fight cancer.

The antioxidant level of bananas is also high; nevertheless, their role in the fight against cancer has not yet been established.

In 2008, a Swedish study found that women who ate 4-6 bananas a week cut in half their risk of developing kidney cancer [14]. 

Good eye health

Avocados contain a high amount of lutein, a natural antioxidant that helps maintain eye health as you age. Each avocado contains 80mg per 100g. Besides that, the high level of Vitamin A present in these fruits plays an important role in keeping the mucus membranes in the eyes healthy [15].

Diarrhea

We all have faced a problem called diarrhea. Diarrhea may happen because of many causes, and as a result, the body loses water and minerals.

Eating fruits high in potassium and sodium can replace minerals lost from diarrhea. The level of potassium and sodium in avocado is higher than in bananas, so by eating this fruit after diarrhea you will restore your mineral intake.

Downsides and Risks 

Allergy

Both bananas and avocados can cause an allergic reaction․

People can have an oral allergy to avocados because they have a high level of histamines. When it happens, the symptoms usually include itching in the lips, mouth, or throat

 An allergic reaction to bananas is more likely to have people who are sensitive to latex. When they do, the symptoms include irritation and itching of the mouth [16].

Other side effects

Both fruits are likely safe and healthy in daily use. However, because half of an avocado is high in calories, they should be consumed in moderation. Side effects to bananas and avocados may include bloating, gas, softer stools, nausea, and vomiting, stomach cramps, and insomnia [16].

Summary

Overall, avocados contain more vitamins, minerals, protein, and calories, whereas bananas are higher in Vitamin B6, Sodium, and Carbohydrates. Avocados contain 40 times more Vitamin K and 2 times more potassium than bananas. Bananas are richer in sugars and have a higher glycemic index.

Sources

  1. https://www.scirp.org/html/13-2700276_16366.htm
  2. https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-94-011-1584-1_2
  3. https://sci-hub.se/10.1002/pmic.201400325
  4. http://www.afst.valahia.ro/images/documente/2019/issue1/I.7_Olaoye.pdf
  5. https://fruits.edpsciences.org/articles/fruits/abs/2009/02/i9201/i9201.html
  6. https://mountainscholar.org/bitstream/handle/10217/183333/AEXT_093552013.pdf?sequence=10
  7. https://www.niscair.res.in/jinfo/IJEB/IJEB%2040(11)%20(News%20Scan).pdf
  8. http://www.ccsenet.org/journal/index.php/jas/article/view/0/38291
  9. http://www.avocadosource.com/Journals/JBioChem/JBioChem_1917_28_511-522.pdf
  10. https://sci-hub.se/https://doi.org/10.1016/0195-6663(92)90165-3
  11. https://academic.oup.com/fqs/article/2/4/183/5164297?login=true
  12. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/10408398.2011.556759
  13. http://www.avocadosource.com/WAC2/WAC2_p037.pdf
  14. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1018364718315714
  15. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/fsn3.1308
  16. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1398-9995.1998.tb03889.x
  17. https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/489f/939e5097a0c54346583cf35104a289a3585b.pdf
Article author photo Elen Khachatrian
Profession: Nutrition & Microbiology at YSU
Last updated: March 4, 2021

Infographic

Banana vs Avocado infographic
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Mineral Comparison

Mineral comparison score is based on the number of minerals by which one or the other food is richer. The "coverage" chart below show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of the food
Banana
1
:
Contains less Sodium -85.7%
Contains more Iron +111.5%
Contains more Calcium +140%
Contains more Potassium +35.5%
Contains more Copper +143.6%
Contains more Zinc +326.7%
Contains more Phosphorus +136.4%
Equal in Magnesium - 29
Iron Calcium Potassium Magnesium Copper Zinc Phosphorus Sodium 10% 2% 32% 20% 27% 5% 10% 1%
Iron Calcium Potassium Magnesium Copper Zinc Phosphorus Sodium 21% 4% 43% 21% 64% 18% 23% 1%
Contains less Sodium -85.7%
Contains more Iron +111.5%
Contains more Calcium +140%
Contains more Potassium +35.5%
Contains more Copper +143.6%
Contains more Zinc +326.7%
Contains more Phosphorus +136.4%
Equal in Magnesium - 29

Vitamin Comparison

Vitamin comparison score is based on the number of vitamins by which one or the other food is richer. The "coverage" chart below show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of the food
Banana
1
:
Contains more Vitamin B6 +42.8%
Contains more Vitamin C +14.9%
Contains more Vitamin A +128.1%
Contains more Vitamin E +1970%
Contains more Vitamin B1 +116.1%
Contains more Vitamin B2 +78.1%
Contains more Vitamin B3 +161.4%
Contains more Vitamin B5 +315.9%
Contains more Vitamin K +4100%
Contains more Folate +305%
Vitamin C Vitamin A Vitamin E Vitamin D Vitamin B1 Vitamin B2 Vitamin B3 Vitamin B5 Vitamin B6 Vitamin B12 Vitamin K Folate 29% 4% 2% 0% 8% 17% 13% 21% 85% 0% 2% 15%
Vitamin C Vitamin A Vitamin E Vitamin D Vitamin B1 Vitamin B2 Vitamin B3 Vitamin B5 Vitamin B6 Vitamin B12 Vitamin K Folate 34% 9% 42% 0% 17% 30% 33% 84% 60% 0% 53% 61%
Contains more Vitamin B6 +42.8%
Contains more Vitamin C +14.9%
Contains more Vitamin A +128.1%
Contains more Vitamin E +1970%
Contains more Vitamin B1 +116.1%
Contains more Vitamin B2 +78.1%
Contains more Vitamin B3 +161.4%
Contains more Vitamin B5 +315.9%
Contains more Vitamin K +4100%
Contains more Folate +305%

Vitamin and Mineral Summary Scores

Summary score is calculated by summing up the daily values contained in 300 grams of the product. Obviously the more the food fulfils human daily needs, the more the summary score is
Vitamin Summary Score
16
Banana
35
Avocado
Mineral Summary Score
13
Banana
24
Avocado

Macronutrients Comparison

Macronutrient comparison charts compare the amount of protein, total fats and total carbohydrates in 300 grams of the food. The displayed values show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of the food
Protein
7%
Banana
12%
Avocado
Carbohydrates
23%
Banana
9%
Avocado
Fats
2%
Banana
68%
Avocado

Comparison summary table

Pay attention at the most right column. It shows the amounts side by side, making it easier to realize the amount of difference.
Banana Avocado
Lower in Sodium ok
Lower in Saturated Fat ok
Lower in price ok
Lower in Sugars ok
Lower in glycemic index ok
Rich in minerals ok
Rich in vitamins ok
Lower in Cholesterol Equal

Which food is preferable in case of diets?

ok
ok
is better in case of low diet
Banana Avocado
Low Calories diet ok
Low Fats diet ok
Low Carbs diet ok
Low glycemic index diet ok

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Comparison summary

Which food contains less Sodium?
Banana
Banana contains less Sodium (difference - 6mg)
Which food is lower in Saturated Fat?
Banana
Banana is lower in Saturated Fat (difference - 2.014g)
Which food is cheaper?
Banana
Banana is cheaper (difference - $0.6)
Which food contains less Sugars?
Avocado
Avocado contains less Sugars (difference - 11.57g)
Which food is lower in glycemic index?
Avocado
Avocado is lower in glycemic index (difference - 8)
Which food is richer in minerals?
Avocado
Avocado is relatively richer in minerals
Which food is richer in vitamins?
Avocado
Avocado is relatively richer in vitamins
Which food contains less Cholesterol?
?
The foods are relatively equal in Cholesterol (0 mg)

All nutrients comparison - raw data values

In the column "Opinion" we made some assumptions which could be controversial. For instance we are assuming that less saturated fats is good for you. Please ignore this column if you have your own opinion.We marked the nutrients, comparison of which we considered as not meaningful, as "N/A"
Nutrient Banana Avocado Opinion
Calories 89 160 Avocado
Protein 1.09 2 Avocado
Fats 0.33 14.66 Avocado
Vitamin C 8.7 10 Avocado
Carbs 22.84 8.53 Banana
Cholesterol 0 0
Vitamin D 0 0
Iron 0.26 0.55 Avocado
Calcium 5 12 Avocado
Potassium 358 485 Avocado
Magnesium 27 29 Avocado
Sugars 12.23 0.66 Avocado
Fiber 2.6 6.7 Avocado
Copper 0.078 0.19 Avocado
Zinc 0.15 0.64 Avocado
Starch 5.38 0.11 Banana
Phosphorus 22 52 Avocado
Sodium 1 7 Banana
Vitamin A 64 146 Avocado
Vitamin E 0.1 2.07 Avocado
Vitamin D 0 0
Vitamin B1 0.031 0.067 Avocado
Vitamin B2 0.073 0.13 Avocado
Vitamin B3 0.665 1.738 Avocado
Vitamin B5 0.334 1.389 Avocado
Vitamin B6 0.367 0.257 Banana
Vitamin B12 0 0
Vitamin K 0.5 21 Avocado
Folate 20 81 Avocado
Trans Fat 0 0
Saturated Fat 0.112 2.126 Banana
Monounsaturated Fat 0.032 9.799 Avocado
Polyunsaturated fat 0.073 1.816 Avocado
Tryptophan 0.009 0.025 Avocado
Threonine 0.028 0.073 Avocado
Isoleucine 0.028 0.084 Avocado
Leucine 0.068 0.143 Avocado
Lysine 0.05 0.132 Avocado
Methionine 0.008 0.038 Avocado
Phenylalanine 0.049 0.097 Avocado
Valine 0.047 0.107 Avocado
Histidine 0.077 0.049 Banana
Fructose 4.85 0.12 Banana

References

The source of all the nutrient values on the page (excluding the main article the sources for which are presented separately if present) is the USDA's FoodCentral. The exact links of the foods presented on this page can be found below.

  1. Banana - https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/173944/nutrients
  2. Avocado - https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/171705/nutrients

All the Daily Values are presented for males aged 31-50, for 2000 calorie diets.

Data provided by FoodStruct.com should be considered and used as information only. Please consult your physician before beginning any diet.