The fruit that is obtained from palm trees is known as dates. They are immensely popular in the whole world, especially in the middle-east. Out of many varieties of dates, Medjool and Deglet are the most famous ones. Dates are known for their natural antioxidant properties. The natural compounds present in the dates make it an excellent sweetener and health-friendly.
Here are the top 8 benefits of dates one can achieve by consuming it:
This fruit has an amazing nutrition profile. The dried dates are higher in calories as compared to other fruits. But they are adorned with vitamins, minerals, and a good amount of fiber.
Only 100 grams of dates contain the following nutrients:
- Calories: 277
- Carbohydrates: 75 grams
- Vitamin B6: 12% of the daily intake
- Iron: 5% of daily intake
- Fiber: 7 grams
- Magnesium: 14% of daily intake
- Protein: 2 grams
Dates are a good source of antioxidants and other positive compounds that benefits our health in many ways.
2.Acts as a natural sweetener
You must have come across the usage of dates as a substitute for refined sugar. Well, it works as an excellent sweetener that satisfies your sweet taste buds.
Fructose is a natural type of sugar that can be found in many fruits. Dates are one of the richest sources that carry fructose. Owing to this quality of dates, it is frequently used by people who avoid white sugar.
Though there are many forms of dates available to be used as a sweetener, the best way is to convert the fruit into a paste. The date paste is easy to make and easy to blend with recipes too.
You can use date paste to replace refined sugar in a 1:1 ratio. For instance, if a dessert recipe asks to incorporate one cup of white sugar, you can use one cup of date paste instead.
3.Eases natural labor
Sometimes the delivery dates pass by and the mother still has not gone to labor. Labor is a natural process that can be induced by some external forces. To induce labor naturally, consuming dates can ease the late-term labor.
Dates help the cervix to dilate hence, prevents the mother from going through induced labor. To reduce the time of labor, start eating dates in the last few weeks of pregnancy.
Research has shown that consuming 6 dates each day for the last 4 weeks of pregnancy to be very beneficial. This helps the mother to go into labor naturally in less time.
These qualities of dates come from the presence of compounds that blend with the oxytocin receptors. These oxytocin receptors have a positive effect on the body that causes contractions during childbirth.
4.Maintains and promotes brain health
Consuming dates can be highly beneficial to the functioning of the brain. Owing to the antioxidants present in the dates, it has excellent brain-boosting properties.
The antioxidants present in the dates help in lowering the inflammatory markers in the brain like interleukin 6(IL-6). This inflammatory marker can increase the risk of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s.
Along with this, dates also prevent the formation of plaque in the brain. It does this by reducing the power of amyloid-beta proteins that gives rise to plaque. The removal of the plaque eliminates the disturbance that takes place during the communication between brain cells.
Consuming dates will help in memorizing, learning, and understanding things. It also reduces the pressure on the brain that is caused due to anxiety and depression.
5.Rich source of fiber
The right amount of fiber is necessary to maintain the wellness of the gut health and the excretory system.
Consuming 100 grams of dates will provide you with 7 grams of protein. So, introducing dates to your diet might be the best way to boost fiber in your body.
The presence of fiber will prevent you from constipation by giving aid to digestion and easy passage for the stool. It also gives rise to better bowel movements by improving stool frequency. To get all of these benefits, consume 7 dates each day and see the significant change.
The presence of fiber in the body helps to manage blood sugar levels, hence preventing diabetes and other harmful diseases.
6.Filled with disease-fighting antioxidants
As we had discussed earlier, dates are high in antioxidants that help to fight several chronic diseases. The presence of antioxidants in our body helps to protect our cells from harmful free radicals. These free radicals are a group of unstable molecules that can cause disease to a body.
The top 3 strong antioxidants found in dates are:
- Flavonoids: These are powerful antioxidants that help our body to reduce inflammation hence, reducing the risk of many diseases including diabetes, a certain type of cancer, and Alzheimer’s diseases.
- Carotenoids: This antioxidant helps in reducing the risk related to eye disorders such as macular degeneration as well as promotes heart health.
- Phenolic acid: this antioxidant helps in reducing the risks related to the heart as well as has anti-inflammatory properties.
7.Improves skin health
Consuming dates also has a wonderful effect on skin health. Being rich in vitamin C and D, dates help in improving the skin’s texture by making it smoother and also maintains its elasticity.
Dates are also packed with anti-aging properties and help in reducing the presence of excessive melanin.
8.Improves bone density
Eating dates can improve as well as maintain bone health. The presence of calcium, magnesium, and potassium, helps in preventing bone-related diseases such as osteoporosis. It helps the bones to absorb necessary nutrients that help them to grow stronger.
These are a few things that one should keep in mind while buying dates. First, the place of origin and mark of authenticity. And second, look for shiny and plump dates. Avoid the ones that are too hard when touched. Lastly, though dates are highly nutritious and the best way to substitute sugar. Always keep in mind to use it in moderation. Excess of anything can be harmful.