An old Chinese proverb “If heaven drops a date, open your mouth” reflects how dates are on a class of their own. Even evidence from old medicine and religious books suggest it’s considered as the stapled fruit, especially in North African and Arab Gulf countries.
Indeed, dates are small delicious fruits with a pleasing taste and chewy texture which hold countless health benefits.
It is quite surprising, despite the widespread use of dates and scientific research proving their nutritional benefits; we don’t often see them on American tables.
The nutritional and medicinal benefits of eating dates are numerous. Just one cup of dates has 20% of your recommended daily intake of potassium along with a multitude of minerals and vitamins, especially magnesium, vitamin B6, zinc, iron, niacin and 23 types of amino acids.
Therefore, this article will show you what will happen if you eat 2 dates every day for 1 week. The results are breathtaking!
1. Boosted immunity
A large number of studies have proved that dates have a strong antioxidant activity, such as ferulic acid, caffeic acid and protocatechuic, and represent a source of natural polyphenolic. Thus, eating them can prevent diseases such as pancreatic cancer due to their anti-mutagenic properties.
Indeed, dates are nutrient-rich fruits high not only in antioxidant activity but also in antibacterial and anti-inflammatory activity.
2. More energy
It’s true that dates can contain high levels of fructose. Conversely, they help control blood sugar levels. In fact, fiber contained in dates doesn’t only stabilize your bowel movements but also your glucose levels. Unlike energy drinks and bars, it’s a source of sustainable energy (Up to 330 Kcal per 100 grams).
Also, dates are considered a low-glycemic sugar substitute. Low-glycemic foods reduce blood sugar levels and the risks of type 2 diabetes.
3.Better Digestive Health
Dates have sufficient dietary fiber levels that are associated with better digestive health. In fact, fiber is essential for controlling blood sugar levels, maintaining weight, preventing constipation and stabilizing your bowel movements, thus help moving waste smoothly. This is extremely important as you will see in the next benefit.
Dates offer about 7 grams of fiber per 3.5-ounce serving. (Note that the recommended daily intake of fiber is 38 grams for men and 25 grams for women) So, make full use of their nutritional value by adding them gradually to your diet…CONTINUE ARTICLE NEXT PAGE
4. Less Reliance on White Sugar
Sadly, refined sugar is hidden inside various packaged foods, under so many different labels, including seemingly healthy foods. Thus, fueling the obesity epidemic as you end up consuming sugar which is stripped of all its natural nutrients.
One way of reducing your intake of added sugar is by avoiding highly processed foods and ideally eat homemade meals. To this end, dates represent a good substitute for white sugar. An example of using dates as part of a meal is by preparing sugar-free coffee and eating them as a snack. You can also chop them up for salads or oatmeal with blueberries.
Another good idea is to blend dates until you get a paste, in other words, a natural sweetener to use in your next recipes!
5. Better Body and Mental Health
As mentioned earlier, date fruit contains at least 6 vitamins, such as zeaxanthin, nicotinic acid and riboflavin, which protect against muscular degeneration.
Moreover, certain studies suggest that sufficient vitamin B6 levels are associated with better brain performance, thus preventing aging-related mental decline. Of course, there are plenty of brain exercises to keep your mind sharp and improve specific mental tasks as you age, but nothing tops good nutrition in keeping your brain healthy.
A recent study showed that the polyphenolic compounds of palm fruits can improve memory and learning, and have the potential of lowering the risk of Alzheimer’s. However, these findings are yet to be confirmed.
The Bottom Line…
As shown in this article, dates are nutrient-rich fruits that are worth adding to your diet. So what are you waiting? Add them to your next grocery list.
One last thing, don’t forget to respect the recommended daily intake of 3 to 5 dates per day.