Eating a healthy diet is important. In fact, it is so important that many governments allocate significant budget funds to analyze the best diets for people. The U.S. Department of Agriculture even issues recommendations how much of each type of food one should eat.

Just as a healthy food diet consists of various classes of foods, so too a healthy spiritual diet is compromised of different types of foods that may be divided into categories according to the blessing that is made on them. For instance, the blessing over a piece of fruit is “Blessed are You L-rd our G-d, King of the Universe, Who created the fruit of the tree” (pri ha’eitz), while the blessing over a vegetable is “Blessed are You L-rd our G-d, King of the Universe, Who created the fruit of the ground” (pri ha’adama).

These distinctions seem pretty obvious: If it grows on or in the ground it’s a vegetable; if it grows on a tree it’s a fruit. Except when it isn’t!

One of the most kid-popular fruits in the world may not actually be a fruit at all, at least according to its blessing! The blessing on a banana is pri ha’adama – the fruit of the ground.

Banana plants are actually herbs (ok, technically they are herbaceous plants), which are plants that have leaves and stems that wither at the end of the growing season down to the soil level. Not being a real tree (with a trunk and branches that survive from year to year), the fruit of a herbaceous plant (another example of which is a pineapple) is considered to be a pri ha’adama.

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