On bloating, bananas, and one yummy smoothie

A week or two ago I came up with a hypothesis regarding my uncomfortable daytime bloating: that the cause was neither beans nor lentils, but… BANANAS! Yes, the healthful, dependable, seemingly innocuous banana. I realized that on days that I brought a banana to work for my morning snack, or quickly scarfed one down before my morning commute, the bloating would emerge and persist loudly through the workday and into the evening. (TMI? heh.)

I looked it up online and found a few pages about bananas (esp. not fully ripened ones) causing indigestion, but the correlation didn’t appear very strong. Either way, I started holding off bananas in the morning and sure enough, I’ve been bloated at work less often.

But I still like bananas, so what to do? Why, have one AFTER work, of course! Which is just what I did today, in the form of an ice-cold choco-banana smoothie.

Simple, creamy, and refreshing — not to mention a convenient way to use up hot chocolate mix left over from the winter — this might not be your most healthful smoothie, but it’ll get you a serving of fruit and the satisfaction in knowing that it only cost you 2 RMB, whereas a glass of basically the same stuff would sell for over 10 times the price at some western joint.

The recent spell of prematurely hot weather has had me dreaming about ice cream almost every day, especially while I’m on my bike on my way home, but this is a great alternative on days I manage not to cave in to my cravings :) And if it makes me bloated for the rest of the night, then so be it.

Choco-banana smoothie

1 ripe banana
1/3 cup water
4-6 ice cubes
2 tbsp hot chocolate mix
Splash of milk (optional)

1. In a blender, combine all ingredients until ice is fully crushed. Enjoy immediately.

Makes one large glass.


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