Last updated: Oct 03, 2008
Bananas arent just for making a bowl of bran cereal less boring. They are rich in vitamin B, something your body may need more of as you age, especially if youre a woman.


Tufts University researchers found that women of childbearing age, particularly those taking oral contraceptives, are much more likely than men to have inadequate amounts of vitamin B6. The nutrient is necessary for estrogen metabolism, researchers say, and the Pill adds more estrogen to your body.

B6 is also vital for red blood cell function, a healthy immune system, and normal brain activity; low levels can lead to a form of anemia. Another B benefit: Research in the journal Neurobiology shows that boosting B12 intake could reduce the risks of Alzheimers. Bananas, baked potatoes, and chicken are good sources of B6; eggs, meat, and milk are high in B12.

If youre concerned about your B levels, ask your doc for a blood test.