The Fruity Milk That Helps Relax Stressed Muscles

After a tough day at work, your muscles will sometimes absorb some of your work-related tension. That's because your muscles are trying to shelter you from a threat, according to the American Psychological Association. If you don't take measures to reduce the stress in your mind, your body will hold onto this tension and cause stress-related disorders.

Sure, you can exercise regularly to flood your body with endorphins and shuttle out some of the stress from your muscles. Meditation and yoga can also help calm your mind and body. Yet sometimes a good glass of milk can not only help you sleep a little better, but blending a banana into your milk might also help relax the stress from your muscles.

Banana-flavored milk has been popular in Korea for more than 40 years, but the ready-made bottles have banana juice concentrate, sugar, and banana flavors rather than an actual banana, (via My Korean Kitchen). You can buy banana milk that's mixed with water in grocery stores, but those varieties will have fat or other additives without the fiber (via Healthline). However, making banana milk on your own will give you certain nutrients that can help you relax and sleep.

The benefits of banana milk

According to the Sleep Foundation, the tryptophan in milk releases serotonin and melatonin to help you sleep. If you add a banana to the milk, you'll also get certain nutrients that can relax your muscles. According to the National Institutes of Health, magnesium helps your muscles and nerves function while regulating your blood pressure. It also helps your body produce energy and synthesize bone. A 7-inch banana has almost 32 milligrams of magnesium, which gives males about 7% of their daily recommended allowance and females about 10%.

That same banana also has 422 milligrams of potassium, which can put you on your way to the recommended 3,400 milligrams for males and 2,600 for females. Potassium helps maintain fluids in your cells and assists with the contraction of your muscles.

According to My Korean Kitchen, you can make homemade banana milk by blending a ripe banana with half a cup of milk and a half cup of water. For a little more sweetness, add a tablespoon of maple serum and a drop of vanilla extract. A vegan version will skip the milk and just stick to water. In either case, be sure the banana is frozen to ensure your banana milk is cold.