When it comes to the optimal mid-workout energy boost, how do bananas measure up against sports performance drinks? A recent study shows that the humble yellow fruit holds its own, as long as you don’t mind the bloat.
The study, which appeared earlier this month in the peer-reviewed journal PLoS ONE, pitted bananas against a typical 6 percent carbohydrate sports drink while 14 well-trained cyclists performed a 75-kilometer time trial.
Each cyclist completed two time trials while consuming 0.2 grams of carbohydrate per kilogram of body weight every 15 minutes. In one time trial, the carbohydrates came from bananas, and in the other, they came from a sports drink.
The riders who ate bananas reported feeling more full and bloated, yet their blood glucose levels and performance did not differ between the two time trials.
If you’re looking for other low-cost energy boosters, Runners World magazine recommends packets of jelly or honey, or even candy, raisins, or pretzels — when taken with water, these modest foods work just as well as pricier energy bars and gels during your longer runs or rides.
To learn how to make your sports drinks, watch the video below: