Causes of Banana-Induced Sickness

Causes of Banana-Induced Sickness

Allergic Reaction

Do you have a banana allergy?

Banana allergy is a serious condition that can cause rashes, sores, swelling, and in rare cases, anaphylaxis. Mentioned in Medical News Today, symptoms of OAS tend to appear immediately after a banana is eaten. Research has found that people with a latex allergy may also be more likely to be allergic to bananas.

What are the symptoms of a food allergy?

Food allergies cause a range of symptoms including tingling or itching in the mouth, hives, swelling of the lips and tongue, wheezing, abdominal pain and trouble breathing, according to Mayo Clinic. These reactions can occur when a person eats a food they are allergic to. It is important to see a doctor if you have any signs or symptoms of a food allergy.

What is serum sickness?

Serum sickness is an immune-complex-mediated hypersensitivity reaction presenting with fever, rash, polyarthritis or polyarthralgias, first recognized in the early 1900s according to the StatPearls publication on NCBI Bookshelf in 2020. Commonly, serum sickness is triggered by certain medications.

Bacterial Contamination

What are the causes of foodborne illnesses?

Foodborne illnesses are caused by bacteria, viruses, parasites or chemical substances entering the body through contaminated food, leading to acute poisoning or long-term diseases, such as cancer, according to the World Health Organization (WHO) on, 2022. Food safety is a critical factor in ensuring public health and preventing outbreaks of food-borne illnesses.

Do foodborne germs cause illnesses in the U.S.?

The five most common foodborne germs that cause illnesses in the United States are Norovirus, Salmonella, Clostridium perfringens, Campylobacter, and Staphylococcus aureus (Staph), according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Some other germs can lead to more severe illnesses and hospitalizations.

What climate is ideal for growing bananas?

Bananas require a hot, humid climate with at least 1000 mm (39.4 in) of rainfall per year, high light requirement and optimal temperature at 27°C (98.6°F), as well as a deep soil rich in organic matter that is well draining and well aerated, according to the Penn State University PlantVillage, on, 2020. Bananas have a range of uses, such as in desserts and smoothies, and are propagated through planting the suckers that grow from the base of the plant.

Chemical Contamination

What is food irradiation?

Natural radiation in food should not be confused with food irradiation, which is a process used to prevent foodborne illnesses and food spoilage. According to the US EPA, foods like bananas and Brazil nuts contain small amounts of radium that is taken up from the soil they are grown in. Radon gas, which is also a natural form of radioactivity, can be found in groundwater and can make its way into foods such as fruits and vegetables.

What pesticides are used for banana cultivation?

Banana cultivation is highly reliant on the use of pesticides in order to protect the crops from diseases and pests. Sourced from the USDA in 2012, only four fungicides were detected on bananas, compared to 10 on plums. Research shows that pesticide use in banana farming can lead to a variety of environmental and health risks.

What are the symptoms of food poisoning?

Food poisoning is a common illness caused by eating contaminated food, with symptoms beginning one to two days after eating and including nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, stomach cramps and abdominal pain. Cited on NHS inform, the infection can also cause fever, headache, and chills. It is important to recognize the warning signs of food poisoning and to take steps to prevent it.

Pesticide Residue

What measures can be taken to protect against banana and plantain diseases?

The only sure defense against banana and plantain diseases in the western hemisphere is to practice proper sanitation and hygiene when handling farm tools, plants, and soil. As mentioned in Gardening Know How (, these diseases are transmitted via insects, machetes and other farm tools, plant detritus, soil, and root contact with ailing plants. It is important to check for signs of disease regularly in order to identify any potential infestations early on.

What are the risks of Americans' obsession with bananas?

Americans’ obsession with banana has a deadly side, as the Cavendish variety commonly found in grocery stores is highly vulnerable to diseases. According to Pulitzer Center's reporting Mar 30, 2020, banana-loving American consumers are driving the market in more ways than meet the eye. It has been estimated that banana production and export in Africa are worth over $1.6 billion annually.

What conditions are necessary for banana plant growth?

Banana plants require hot and humid climates, a rainfall of at least 1000 mm (39.4 in) per year, and a temperature of 27°C (98.6°F) to thrive, alongside a deep soil rich in organic matter which is well draining and aerated. According to data from the Penn State University Plant Village, bananas need high light requirements to grow optimally. The soil should be rich in nutrients for the best banana production.

Fungal Infection

What can help understand fungal pathogenic processes?

Fungal pathogens are the main cause of fruit rots and consumer complaints, resulting in postharvest losses of fresh fruit that reach up to 30% of total harvested fruits. Sourced from a study published in the journal Frontiers in Plant Science in 2018 by researchers from the University of the Basque Country, Elicitation of Fruit Fungi Infection and Stress can help understand fungal pathogenic processes. Using proper postharvest handling techniques can reduce the risk of fungal infection and improve the shelf life of fresh fruits.

What are symptoms of a fungal infection?

Fungal infections, caused by yeast, molds and other types of fungus, can cause abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, fever, nasal congestion, headache, one-sided facial swelling, and face pain. As stated by Cleveland Clinic (2020), these infections can be treated with antifungal medications. It is important to note that most fungi do not cause disease in people.

What is aspergillosis?

Aspergillosis is an infection caused by a fungus which typically affects the respiratory system. As reported by Mayo Clinic, the signs and severity of these illnesses vary greatly. The fungus, aspergillus, is found in soil and decaying vegetation and can cause severe respiratory problems in those with weakened immune systems. It can also cause skin infections, ear infections, and sinusitis.

Poor Storage Conditions

Do people with a banana allergy experience symptoms?

People with a banana allergy may experience symptoms such as swollen tongue, difficulty breathing, hoarseness, anaphylactic shock, abdominal pain and nausea, according to Healthline in 2017. These reactions can be severe and require immediate medical attention. Those with a banana allergy should also be aware of the potential for cross-reactivity with other fruits and latex.

Should fruits and vegetables be refrigerated?

It is important to refrigerate fruits and vegetables within 2 hours after cutting, peeling, or cooking them, and keep them at 40°F or lower, in order to reduce the risk of foodborne illnesses. Via the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), keeping raw foods from animals like meat, poultry, and seafood separate from fruits and vegetables is also essential. If exposed to temperatures above 90° (such as a hot car or picnic), they should be refrigerated within 1 hour.

What nutrients does a medium ripe banana provide?

A medium ripe banana provides 450 mg of potassium, 15 grams of sugar, 0 gram fat, 28 grams of carbohydrate, 3 grams of fiber, 1 gram protein, and Vitamin C and Manganese, according to The Nutrition Source from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. One banana contains 110 calories.

Unripe Bananas

Do people with a banana allergy experience severe reactions?

People with a banana allergy experience a range of symptoms from a rash to anaphylactic shock, a severe and potentially fatal reaction. According to Medical News Today, these reactions occur due to the immune system reacting to a protein in bananas. Certain risk factors such as asthma and eczema can increase the likelihood of developing a banana allergy.

How can bananas benefit a diet?

Bananas are a great source of potassium, magnesium, vitamin C, and manganese, providing 110 calories, 0 grams of fat, 1 gram of protein, 28 grams of carbohydrates, 15 grams of sugar, 3 grams of fiber, and 450 mg of potassium per serving. According to The Nutrition Source at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, bananas are an excellent addition to any diet.

Can banana peel be used to benefit health?

Banana peel is rich in antioxidant phytochemicals which possess health benefits, as demonstrated in a study conducted by Rebello et al. (2018) on behalf of the University of São Paulo. The disposal of peel and other by-products from banana-processing industry causes a serious environmental problem.

Overripe Bananas

What environmental factors can cause banana physiological post-harvest disorders?

Banana physiological post-harvest disorders are caused mainly by environmental factors and improper handling, according to a review published by the MedCrave Online Journal of Food and Production Technology in 2016. Environmental factors such as temperature, relative humidity, and light can all contribute to the onset of these disorders. Wild species from the Musa genus, such as Musa acuminata and Musa balbisiana, can have an effect on the development of these disorders. Proper handling of bananas can prevent post-harvest disorders and ensure a longer shelf life.

Are bananas bad when there is liquid under the skin?

Ripe to overripe bananas have white or cream-colored flesh, and signs of spoilage include leaking liquid or fruit flies near the bunch. An info from Sweet Home Digest, when a banana has gone bad it will show signs of liquid under the skin when peeled. In general, bananas start to go bad after 4-5 days at room temperature.

Is a ripe banana healthier than an unripe one?

Ripe bananas are healthier than unripe ones, according to a review published in Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology & Nutrition in December 2014. To tell if a banana has gone bad, look for discoloration, mold, and a soft texture. The presence of resistant starch in unripe bananas may cause or worsen constipation.

Unsanitary Preparation

What impact does food safety have on people worldwide?

Food safety affects millions of people around the world, resulting in the loss of 33 million healthy life years (DALYs) annually according to the World Health Organization (WHO), on, in 2022. US$ 110 billion is lost each year in productivity and medical expenses due to contaminated food.

Can bananas be used in fruit salads?

Bananas can be a great addition to fruit salads, and can be kept from darkening too quickly by adding a bit of acid such as apple cider vinegar, orange juice, lime, or lemon. It is important to note that baking with bananas may cause the product to bake faster, so it is important to check for doneness several minutes earlier than usual or reduce the oven temperature by 25°F. Cited from The Nutrition Source of Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, bananas are a good source of dietary fiber and contain vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin C, Vitamin B6, and Potassium.

Can a banana allergy cause allergic reactions?

A banana allergy can cause a variety of symptoms, including swollen tongue, closing of the airways, swollen throat and hoarse voice, a drop in blood pressure, abdominal pain, and nausea, according to Healthline (Apr 6, 2017). Allergies to other fruits such as apples, avocados, and kiwis may also occur due to cross-reactivity.

Parasitic Infection

What is the most economically important nematode parasite of banana?

Radopholus similis, the burrowing nematode, is a major cause of banana toppling disease, yellows disease of pepper, and spreading. As mentioned in University of Florida, this organism is the most economically important nematode parasite of banana in the world. Since its discovery, Radopholus similis has posed a great threat to global banana production. Research also suggests that its presence can lead to a decrease in yield of up to 50% in some cases.

How are infectious diseases spread?

Infectious diseases are most commonly spread through direct contact with an infected person or animal, contact with their feces, or through mosquito bites. Mayo Clinic states that malaria is caused by a tiny parasite transmitted by a mosquito bite, and other parasites may be transmitted to humans from animal feces. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends washing hands regularly and avoiding contact with people who are sick to reduce the risk of catching an infectious disease.

What role do glycan-binding proteins play in host-parasite interactions?

Parasites have unique glycan structures that can lead to antigenic responses, and express glycan-binding proteins which are involved in host-parasite interactions. Via Essentials of Glycobiology from the National Center for Biotechnology Information, parasites also have various glycan-binding proteins that play a role in host-parasite interactions. These glycans often differ markedly from those found in vertebrates.


  • Medicalnewstoday : Banana allergy, Symptoms, risk factors.
  • Who : Food safety, World Health Organization.
  • Epa : Natural Radioactivity, Food, US EPA.
  • Gardeningknowhow : Guide, Banana Pests, Diseases, Solving.
  • Mdpi : Stresses, Free Full-Text, Elicitation, Fruit Fungi Infection.
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