Caution: Bananas Contain As Much Alcohol As Beer

It sounds like a stupid joke, but alcohol is not only in beer and co., but also in other foods that you would not expect, such as fruit. In fact, several ripe bananas can contain as much alcohol as a small beer.

The fact that some sweets contain alcohol is certainly nothing new for many. In the case of pralines filled with liqueurs or Black Forest cake, this shouldn’t be too surprising. But it gets a lot crazier when it comes to fruit. Alcohol can also be found in bananas.

Bananas contain as much alcohol as a beer

About five ripe bananas contain the same amount of alcohol as a small beer, i.e. about 0.6 percent by volume. That’s quite a lot. Of course, you rarely eat five bananas in a row. But in the heyday of smoothies and banana diets, it’s becoming more common.

Smoothies contain quite a bit of sugar, which makes a good base for alcohol. Over time, the fermentation process converts the fructose into alcohol thanks to the yeast cells. The more sugar and time involved, the more alcoholic the drink can become. It is therefore theoretically possible to get drunk on bananas, but in practice it is unlikely.

Fermented fruit: Attention risk groups

Risk groups such as pregnant women and dry alcoholics should still consult their doctor as a precaution. As a general rule, eating more than one banana or banana smoothie won’t get you drunk straight away.

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Written by Allison Turner

I am a Registered Dietitian with 7+ years of experience in supporting many facets of nutrition, including but not limited to nutrition communications, nutrition marketing, content creation, corporate wellness, clinical nutrition, food service, community nutrition, and food and beverage development. I provide relevant, on-trend, and science-based expertise on a wide range of nutrition topics such as nutrition content development, recipe development and analysis, new product launch execution, food and nutrition media relations, and serve as a nutrition expert on behalf of a brand.

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