The banana is a fruit which can be found in more than five hundred varieties in different parts of the world. The banana plant is the largest plant in the world which does not have a stem made of wood. These banana plants belong to the same botanical family as that of lilies, palms and orchids. A cluster of bananas will consist of at least ten to twenty bananas and such a bunch is usually known as a hand. Every banana which belongs to a hand is known as a finger.
The name banana has been derived from the Arabic word ‘banan’ which means finger. A lot of experts in the field of horticulture state that the banana was the only fruit which used to exist during ancient times. A total value of bananas exported in Ecuador is $954.00 million (according to latest stats). Ecuador is the leading producer of bananas compared to the rest of the world. However, biggest banana exporter is United States with its firms Dole and Chiquita.
The nutritional content of bananas is also extremely high. A large amount of vitamins like vitamins A, C and E can be found in bananas. Riboflavin, thiamine, niacin, folic acid and many other minerals like iron, calcium, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, copper, zinc and fluoride are some of the other nutrients which can be found in bananas. A lot of essential amino acids like tryptophan, lysine, leucine, threonine, arginine and glycine can be found in bananas. Banana is also supposed to be a well-known anti-depressant. However a lot of scientists believe that these banana plants are being attacked by insects and parasites on a regular basis and due to this they could also become extinct very easily.