Can Bearded Dragons Eat Banana?

In this post we learn that bearded dragons can occasionally have bananas but they shouldn’t have them very often. And we learn why that is.

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Bananas Are OK As An Occasional Treat

About 6 min reading time

Can Bearded Dragons Eat Bananas?

Bearded dragons can eat banana as an occasional special treat, but they should be restricted to once or twice a month due to their high sugar, low calcium and high potassium content.

Like all fruit, banana should only be given sparingly, as an occasional treat for bearded dragons. Most bearded dragons do love a bit of banana and some will almost take your finger off to get some if you’re hand feeding it to them. Trust us, we have experience! It’s the only time we’ve ever been bitten by a bearded dragon.

Nevertheless, bananas, as with most fruit, are high in sugar and this can play havoc with the beardies digestive system, as well as providing too much energy which if not burned off can lead to obesity and fatty liver disease. Also, against bananas is the minimal amount of calcium in them, coupled with a high potassium and phosphorus content, rendering any calcium they do have pretty much useless.

So, whilst bananas aren’t especially good for bearded dragons, they do tend to enjoy them, so very small pieces of banana once in a while are a nice treat for them

Advantages Of Bananas For Bearded Dragons

  • Colourful and bright
  • A nice treat

Disadvantages Of Bananas For Bearded Dragons

  • High in sugar, leading to teeth issues and digestive issues
  • Calcium to Phosphorus ratio is not good, almost no calcium

How To Feed Bananas To A Bearded Dragon

Bananas are probably one of the easiest fruits to feed to a bearded dragon. They just need peeling and breaking into small pieces. They’re soft so there’s very limited likelihood of choking on them (although do make sure they’re a sensible size portion) and no risk of impaction from the banana itself.

But don’t feed them too much. They’re high in sugar, and too many sugar spikes lead to diabetes and obesity.

You can mix some banana into their salad if you have a fussy eater, but bear in mind that might make them even more fussy because on the days where there are no bananas, they might just sneer at their salad even harder. Bee pollen is probably a better alternative for fussy eaters.

If you’re going to feed banana by hand to a bearded dragon, be careful that they don’t get too excited and end up with part of your finger in their mouth too. It can easily happen because small squishy parts of banana get stuck to fingers.

You should choose less ripe bananas for your bearded dragons, as the more ripe bananas have more sugar content as the starch content changes to sugars as the banana ripens.

How Much Banana To Feed A Bearded Dragon?

Although many online sources talk about how great bananas are with their high levels of potassium and anti-oxidants, these sources are almost always referring to humans eating bananas. Humans can deal with dietary sugar far better than bearded dragons. The high levels of sugar, particularly as the bananas ripen, causes fermentation problems for bearded dragons and so, sugar intake should be kept to a minimum.

The tiny amount of calcium in bananas is completely outweighed by the larger phosphorous and potassium content, meaning that bearded dragons who are fed banana regularly are likely to be missing out on more high calcium vegetables, which can ultimately lead to Metabolic Bone Disease – which is something you definitely don’t want your beardie to have to deal with.

So for that reason, we’d recommend no more than a couple of slices (circle slices that is) a month for your bearded dragon as a treat. It’s probably better to give them a pea sized amount of banana at a time as a treat, with no more than a circle slice every month.

Nutritional Data For Carrots For Bearded Dragons

Nutritional ItemContent
Water Content (%)74.9
Fat (%)0.33
Protein (%)1.09
Dietary Fibre (%)2.6*
Calcium (mg/100g)5 (0.005%)
Potassium (mg/100g)358 (0.358%)
Phosphorous (mg/100g)22 (0.022%)
Vitamin A (ug/100g)3
Vitamin C (ug/100g)8.7
Oxalates (mg/100g)Low
Nutritional Data For Carrots For Bearded Dragons [1][2]

Summary

So, we’ve determined that the answer is yes, banana is OK for bearded dragons but they shouldn’t have too much and not very often. Banana should only be fed to bearded dragons in small amounts and only as a treat.

Frequency: Occasional Treat.

For more information on other fruits that Bearded Dragons can eat, please see our overall category at Bearded Dragon Fruit.

References:

1: US Department of Agriculture FoodData Central. Fetched on 23rd February September 2022 from https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/173944/nutrients

2: Oxalate (oxalic acid) content of 750+ foods, with numbers from university and government sources – sourced from https://oxalate.org/ on 23rd February 2022.

Featured Image by ReneSchulze1984 from Pixabay