This Is How Much Sugar Is Really In A Banana

It's no surprise that bananas are the second most popular fruit globally, second only to tomatoes (via World Atlas). Bananas are a sweet alternative to processed foods, and some may wonder if they're too sweet to be considered healthy. But don't go cutting them out of your diet just yet. Healthline explains that despite containing sugar, fruits are healthy primarily because they are "real, whole foods."

While bananas contain sugar, it's the kind of sugar that is good for you. According to Livestrong, bananas contain fructose. While fructose added to processed food products can increase triglycerides, it doesn't have the same effect when it occurs naturally in foods. One reason why has to do with how much fiber bananas contain. According to WebMD, a medium banana contains over 3 grams of fiber, with most of it being soluble. Soluble fiber slows the digestion process down, delivering sugar to your system slowly (per Healthline). Soluble fiber also helps lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

Bananas get sweeter as they become more ripe

Bananas are one of the sweetest fruits known to man. Reference suggests they are second only to dates when it comes to their sugar content. One medium banana has approximately 14 grams of sugar, according to the Food Network. That said, bananas become sweeter as they ripen. Green bananas may be more beneficial to your health because they contain resistant starch, a carbohydrate that ferments in the large intestine. This fermentation causes good bacteria to grow, making green bananas a prebiotic. Furthermore, there is evidence that green bananas may help lower insulin sensitivity, which might prove to be the best choice for people with type 2 diabetes.

Ripe bananas have benefits as well. While they contain more sugar and less resistant starch than green bananas do, Spoon University points out that the antioxidants in bananas also increase as they ripen. Ripe bananas also contain a compound called tumor necrosis factor, which provides your body with anti-cancer properties.