We love our bananas for their superb energy and potassium imparting traits. And only if those irritating leathery strands would go away, they would be a perfect snack!
But as it turns out, these strands, also known as ‘phloem bundles’, are indispensable in making the banana a delicious and healthy delight.
Nicholas D. Gillitt, a US nutritionist, explained the importance of phloem bundles in a report by Huffington Post.
Phloem, as the name suggests, is one a type of transport tissue that you can be found in all plants and is a passage for moving nutrients and other substances around the whole plant.
Particularly for bananas, the phloem strands are used to send the nutrients throughout the fruit, helping in its growth and development.
Nicholas D. Gillitt, director of the Dole Nutrition Institute and vice president of nutrition research explained to Huffington Post:
‘Phloem bundles are necessary for the adequate disposition of nutrients throughout the plant.’
And while they make the bananas less palatable, the strands are completely edible and just as nutritionally rich as any other part of the fruit. In fact, they might even contain more fiber than the rest of the fruit, Gillitt says.
These strands can be removed using genetic modification, but Gillitt pointed out that this would be a futile activity since companies and institutes can spend their money on something better like creating disease-resistant food or fruit with higher nutritional content or disease-resistant food.
So you better suck it up and learn to live with the strands, for the sake of your own health!