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Pomegranate vs Banana - Health impact and Nutrition Comparison

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Pomegranate
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Banana

Introduction

Bananas are one of the fruits that are commonly used around the world. They are indigenous to India and Southeast Asia, but nowadays it is found in nearly every household worldwide. Its shelf life is not that long, approximately 5 days as it will start to overripe.
It has a wide range of usage, it is consumed raw, made into a smoothie, or even used as an ingredient for baking.

Bananas that are consumed nowadays are different than the ancestor banana plants. Bananas used to have seeds and come in much smaller sizes. In the first century a modification was done on the wild type bananas and from that point and on the domestic banana was spread.

Pomegranate is a famous food in the Mediterranean, Caucasian, and Asian cuisines and cultures. The pomegranate was one of the fruits that were mentioned in different ancient cultures. From the ancient Egyptian culture, the pomegranate was a symbol of prosperity and medically it was used to treat tapeworms.
In Armenia, it is considered as a cultural fruit and symbol, and is used to make wine.

Pomegranate can be consumed as juices or in its raw state. There are various types that taste differently, and range from the pale pink sweet grains to the bloody red sour or sweet ones. 

In this article, we will be comparing the nutritional content of both banana and pomegranate, the vitamin and mineral content, health impacts, and the variety of uses. 

Nutritional content comparison

Banana and pomegranate have different glycemic indices, however both are considered low glycemic index foods. The glycemic index of banana is 51, which is lower than 55, categorizing it as a lower glycemic index. On the other hand, the glycemic index of pomegranate is 18.

Protein

Bananas contain 1.1g of proteins in 100g. The average medium sized banana weighs around 120g which makes it’s protein content 1.32g.

The protein content of 100g of pomegranate is 1.7g. The serving size of pomegranate is approximately 180-200g which makes the protein content on average 3.1g

Fat 

Bananas contain lower amounts of fat compared to pomegranate; 0.3g for bananas and 1.2g for pomegranate respectively. 

Even though there is a difference between them, the fat content of both can be neglected. 

Carbohydrate

100g of bananas contain 23g of carbohydrates, an interesting aspect of this composition comes from the notion of the type of carbohydrate. In unripe bananas the carbohydrate content is mostly starch. However, as the banana ripens the carbohydrate content becomes sugar. The difference is important because in unripe bananas the starch is resistant to absorption in the digestive tract, thus it is called resistant starch. The resistant starch acts similarly to dietary fibers. 

Pomegranates contain 19g of carbohydrates which is relatively lower than the carbohydrate content of bananas. 

The dietary fiber of bananas is lower than that of pomegranates. Bananas contain 2.6g of dietary fibers, on the other hand, pomegranates contain 4g per 100g. The daily requirement is at 25-30g a day. 

Vitamin content comparison

The major vitamin composition of banana per 100g is as following:

  • Vitamin C: 8.7mg 
  • Vitamin B6: 0.367mg 
  • Vitamin A: 19.2mcg

The major vitamin composition of pomegranate per 100g is as following:

  • Vitamin C: 10.2mg
  • Vitamin K: 16.4mcg
  • Vitamin E:  0.6mg 

Vitamin C content

Bananas and pomegranates are rich in vitamin C, however, pomegranates contain much more vitamin C compared to bananas. The daily recommended value of vitamin C is between 65-90mg. 

Mineral content comparison

Bananas are rich in potassium, magnesium, and manganese. On the other hand, pomegranate is mostly richer with copper and potassium

The potassium content of bananas is higher than the pomegranates. 

Health impacts

Bananas are an optimal source of energy pre, during, and post sports exercise, as it boosts energy and performance. In addition to that, bananas are the best alternative to chocolate or energy bars, as those contain refined sugars and additives. (1)

Pomegranates contain ellagic acid which has antioxidative properties and anti-aging properties. It helps rejuvenate the skin. 

Diabetes

Bananas have antidiabetic properties. This is due to its activity over a compound that breaks down big sugar molecules into smaller ones in order to absorb them. Bananas have enzymes that stop this activity, thus keeping sugar molecules as undigested molecules and clearing them out. (2)

Pomegranates also have antidiabetic properties, however, it has a different mechanism than that of the bananas. They have hypoglycemic characteristics, which means they tend to lower blood sugar levels. (3)

Cancer

Bananas contain lectins which have a distinctive role in cancer cell interventions. Banana lectins are effective in suppressing cancer cell proliferation. Which in turn also interferes in the reduction of cancer metastasis. (4)

Pomegranates are filled with antioxidant and anticarcinogenic components that suppress and reduce the risks of different types of cancer among: (5)

  • Breast cancer
  • Prostate cancer
  • Liver cancer 
  • Skin cancer

Downsides

Bananas cause increased amounts of mucus. On an empty stomach, eating a banana may cause acid reflux and indigestion. 

On the other hand, for pomegranates, consuming the seeds in high amounts causes constipation and indigestion.
It is also recommended not to consume pomegranate while taking statins, cholesterol medication, as it might damage the kidneys causing rhabdomyolysis; breaking of the kidney muscles. 

Variations and methods of consumption

Bananas and pomegranates have a wide range of consumption. They are found as dried fruits, juices, smoothies, etc. 

Bananas can be used in baking. They are mostly used in vegan cuisine, where egg is replaced with banana in the ingredients specifically for baking, due to their similar consistency. 

They are also used as smoothies mixed with different fruits and chocolate (cocoa powder). 

Some asian cuisines, like the Indonesian and  Malyisian cuisines, fry bananas and it is called pisang goreng.

Pomegranates also have a variety of usages. They are sometimes used as garnishes on different dishes.

A widely used juice is the pomegranate juice which is consumed all over the world. Pomegranate can be also made into molasses and wine. 

When juices or smoothies are consumed one must be careful of the different aspects like sugar or added components. For example pomegranate juice is healthy, however, it is packed with sugars because more than 1 pomegranate is squeezed to make 1 cup of pomegranate juice. Consuming the juice, also means that the fiber content decreases as the seeds are removed during the juicing process. 

For bananas that are consumed as smoothies, the whole banana is just blended so no nutritional content will be gone to waste. However, additional sugar must be taken into consideration. 

Summary

Bananas are higher in carbohydrates and glycemic index, they are richer in potassium, magnesium and manganese, and contain vitamin C, B6 and A. Pomegranates have lower amounts of carbohydrates and a lower glycemic index, they are richer in copper, Vitamin C, K and K, and dietary fibers.

References:

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3355124/
  2. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24752944/
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6272006/
  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6272006/
  5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5806496/
Article author photo Jack  Yacoubian
Profession: Haigazian Medical University
Last updated: November 29, 2020

Infographic

Pomegranate vs Banana 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
Contains more Iron +15.4%
Contains more Calcium +100%
Contains more Copper +102.6%
Contains more Zinc +133.3%
Contains more Phosphorus +63.6%
Contains more Potassium +51.7%
Contains more Magnesium +125%
Contains less Sodium -66.7%
Iron Calcium Potassium Magnesium Copper Zinc Phosphorus Sodium 12% 3% 21% 9% 53% 10% 16% 1%
Iron Calcium Potassium Magnesium Copper Zinc Phosphorus Sodium 10% 2% 32% 20% 27% 5% 10% 1%
Contains more Iron +15.4%
Contains more Calcium +100%
Contains more Copper +102.6%
Contains more Zinc +133.3%
Contains more Phosphorus +63.6%
Contains more Potassium +51.7%
Contains more Magnesium +125%
Contains less Sodium -66.7%

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
:
4
Banana
Contains more Vitamin C +17.2%
Contains more Vitamin E +500%
Contains more Vitamin B1 +116.1%
Contains more Vitamin B5 +12.9%
Contains more Vitamin K +3180%
Contains more Folate +90%
Contains more Vitamin A +∞%
Contains more Vitamin B2 +37.7%
Contains more Vitamin B3 +127%
Contains more Vitamin B6 +389.3%
Vitamin C Vitamin A Vitamin E Vitamin D Vitamin B1 Vitamin B2 Vitamin B3 Vitamin B5 Vitamin B6 Vitamin B12 Vitamin K Folate 34% 0% 12% 0% 17% 13% 6% 23% 18% 0% 41% 29%
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%
Contains more Vitamin C +17.2%
Contains more Vitamin E +500%
Contains more Vitamin B1 +116.1%
Contains more Vitamin B5 +12.9%
Contains more Vitamin K +3180%
Contains more Folate +90%
Contains more Vitamin A +∞%
Contains more Vitamin B2 +37.7%
Contains more Vitamin B3 +127%
Contains more Vitamin B6 +389.3%

Vitamin and Mineral Summary Scores

The summary score is calculated by summing up the daily values contained in 300 grams of the product. Obviously the more the food fulfills human daily needs, the more the summary score is.
Vitamin Summary Score
16
Pomegranate
16
Banana
Mineral Summary Score
15
Pomegranate
13
Banana

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 food.
Protein
10%
Pomegranate
7%
Banana
Carbohydrates
19%
Pomegranate
23%
Banana
Fats
5%
Pomegranate
2%
Banana

Comparison summary table

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

Which food is preferable for your diet?

ok
ok
is better in case of low diet
Pomegranate Banana
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 is richer in minerals?
Pomegranate
Pomegranate is relatively richer in minerals
Which food is lower in Sugar?
Banana
Banana is lower in Sugar (difference - 1.44g)
Which food contains less Sodium?
Banana
Banana contains less Sodium (difference - 2mg)
Which food is lower in Saturated Fat?
Banana
Banana is lower in Saturated Fat (difference - 0.008g)
Which food is lower in glycemic index?
Banana
Banana is lower in glycemic index (difference - 48)
Which food is cheaper?
Banana
Banana is cheaper (difference - $0.8)
Which food contains less Cholesterol?
?
The foods are relatively equal in Cholesterol (0 mg)
Which food is richer in vitamins?
?
It cannot be stated which food is richer in vitamins. See the charts below for detailed information. See the charts below for detailed information. See the charts below for detailed information.

All nutrients comparison - raw data values

Nutrient Pomegranate Banana Opinion
Calories 83 89 Banana
Protein 1.67 1.09 Pomegranate
Fats 1.17 0.33 Pomegranate
Vitamin C 10.2 8.7 Pomegranate
Net carbs 14.699999809265137 20.239999771118164 Banana
Carbs 18.7 22.84 Banana
Cholesterol 0 0
Vitamin D 0 0
Iron 0.3 0.26 Pomegranate
Calcium 10 5 Pomegranate
Potassium 236 358 Banana
Magnesium 12 27 Banana
Sugar 13.67 12.23 Banana
Fiber 4 2.6 Pomegranate
Copper 0.158 0.078 Pomegranate
Zinc 0.35 0.15 Pomegranate
Starch 5.38 Banana
Phosphorus 36 22 Pomegranate
Sodium 3 1 Banana
Vitamin A 0 64 Banana
Vitamin E 0.6 0.1 Pomegranate
Vitamin D 0 0
Vitamin B1 0.067 0.031 Pomegranate
Vitamin B2 0.053 0.073 Banana
Vitamin B3 0.293 0.665 Banana
Vitamin B5 0.377 0.334 Pomegranate
Vitamin B6 0.075 0.367 Banana
Vitamin B12 0 0
Vitamin K 16.4 0.5 Pomegranate
Folate 38 20 Pomegranate
Trans Fat 0 0
Saturated Fat 0.12 0.112 Banana
Monounsaturated Fat 0.093 0.032 Pomegranate
Polyunsaturated fat 0.079 0.073 Pomegranate
Tryptophan 0.009 Banana
Threonine 0.028 Banana
Isoleucine 0.028 Banana
Leucine 0.068 Banana
Lysine 0.05 Banana
Methionine 0.008 Banana
Phenylalanine 0.049 Banana
Valine 0.047 Banana
Histidine 0.077 Banana
Fructose 4.85 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 to the foods presented on this page can be found below.

  1. Pomegranate - https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/169134/nutrients
  2. Banana - https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/173944/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.