A dietician and nutritionist, Miss Nonyerem Nnebe, says there is the need for people to eat more of plantain because of its nutrients content.
Nnebe, who works at the Chukwuemeka Odimegwu Ojukwu University Teaching Hospital Amaku, made this call in a chat with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Awka on Friday,
According to the nutritionist, plantain contains micronutrients mainly potassium, which is very good for hypertensive patients.
She said that plantain gives energy and it is very rich in nutrients as in magnesium, calcium in addition to potassium, which the body needs for proper growth and development .
“Plantain contains more of energy because of its carbohydrates value, as it is regarded as energy giving food and it has some quantity of iron, which also plays its role in human development; it has more calories.
“Plantains are energy giving food which can be prepared in various ways such as porridges, boiled or fried, and chips among others,” she said.
According to her, people who are diabetic must eat plantain because of its variety of nutrients it provides for good health.
“The potassium content is very good for the elderly, it is also heart friendly and diabetic patients need to eat plantain with lots of vegetables.
“We have varied meals made out of plantain and is generally good for the family whether fried or boiled and it can be combined with other staples; it is a quality meal,” she said.
According to Mrs Fidelia Nwaugha, a plantains seller, this is the season of plantain and it is very affordable, as people patronise sellers in large numbers.
“We sell whole raw plantain now between N700, N1,000 and N2,500, depending on the size, we sell its part between N200 and N400, also depending on size.
“Once it is out of season, it will be sold between N1,500 and above and that one being sold between N200 and N400 will attract between N500 and N800, depending on size,” she said.
She called on the government to encourage farmers by creating plantain plantation, so as to have the produce all year round.
Miss Ogochukwu Nkwonocha, another plantain seller, stated that plantain remained a seasonal farm produce, which would not be available from March to July of every year.
According to her, it is expensive at the time but from August till February, it will be in season and become affordable for all.
Nkwonocha said that when plantain was out- of- season, it would be difficult to put it on sale due to its high cost.