Monkey Also Picks Off Banana Strings, But Experts Say You Shouldn’t
An adorable video of a monkey snacking on a banana sees her picking away the strings of the fruit, just like many fussy humans do.
I do this out of habit, feeling that it tidies the banana up a bit, and I’ve never really questioned myself. These bits just don’t appear very edible and I instinctively don’t want to put them in my mouth.
So I can relate to the monkey when she appears to be a bit grossed out by the strings, flinging them from from her fingers and wiping her hands on a log. At one point, the strings end up dropped on her baby and she picks them away as if she was removing something truly vile and messy.
Check it out:
However, experts have said eating the banana strings is actually beneficial for your health, and can be safely consumed along with the rest of the fruit.
Of course, these straggly bits aren’t actually called ‘banana strings’ in scientific circles. Smarter people than I refer to them as ‘phloem bundles’, which admittedly isn’t the most appetising name. They’re made up of a plant tissue known as phloem, which works to transport nutrients around the fruit.
Being just as much of a nutritious boost as the rest of the banana, fibre rich phloem bundles are filled with all sorts of healthy vitamins and minerals, including potassium, vitamin A and vitamin B6.
Dr. Elizabeth Trattner A.P. DOM, Doctor of Chinese and Integrative Medicine, told Reader’s Digest Canada:
It’s not gross or disgusting it just helps the banana grow and become delicious. It is fine to eat and although its structure is a little different than the inside it can be consumed.
Interestingly, phloem bundles may also be used to figure out the ripeness of your banana, with the bundles sticking more tightly to the fruit if all the nutrients still need to be evenly distributed. With ripe and overripe bananas, strings are looser and can be pulled away more easily.
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Creditsj Latosha/TikTok and 1 other
Readers Digest Canada