Dates are considered to be one of nature’s most perfect foods. They are reputed to be the oldest viable seed – dating back to pre-historic era majorly in the Mesopotamian belt and the Indus Valley. Because the tree and its fruit have so many uses — from food to building materials, the date palm is known as the “tree of life” in the Middle East. Date palms cover 3% of the earths cultivated surface and around four million tons are grown annually.
Dates are highly nutritious as they are loaded with good amounts of Vitamins and Minerals. Though they are high in sugar, most of the varieties have a low glycaemic index (GI) and can be consumed by diabetics too.
There are many varieties of dates available world-wide and can be categorised in three main categories’ – soft, semisoft, and dry.
100 g of Dates contain 317 Kcals, 2.5 g of Protein, 75.8 g of Carbs, 0.4 g of Fat, 120 mg of Calcium, 50 mg of Phosphorus, 7.3 mg of Iron, 26 µg of Carotene, 0.9 mg Niacin, 3 mg of Vitamin C, 12 mg of Magnesium and 3.9 g of Fibre.
In addition, dates are also a good source of Essential Amino Acids. They contain 150 mg of Arginine, 50 mg of Histidine, 190 mg of Lysine, 170 mg of Phenylamine, 50 mg of Tyrosine, 50 mg of Methionine, 120 mg of Cystine, 180 mg of Threonine, 260 mg of Leucine, 150 mg Isoleucine and 220 mg Valine per gram of Nitrogen.
Digestive Health: Dates are considered as a potent laxative food as they contain high levels of soluble fibre, which is essential in promoting healthy bowel movements and the comfortable passage of food through the intestinal tract, which can help relieve symptoms of constipation.
Bone Health: There are significant amount of minerals found in dates which are integral for bone development. Hence dates are good for strengthening bones and keeping bone related disorders at bay.
Anaemia: Anaemia, which is due to low iron levels, is a common issue amongst many people. Anaemia can cause exhaustion, fatigue and sluggishness. Dates on the other hand, are a good source of iron and help increase energy and strength.
Allergies: Dates contain organic sulphur. Sulphur helps in the reduction of allergic reactions and seasonal allergies. Dates help neutralise the effects of those allergies because of sulphur content.
Energy Booster: Dates are high in natural sugars like glucose, fructose, and sucrose and hence provide a powerhouse for energy burst. Can be used to wave of lethargy or sluggishness or can be used as a great pre / post workout snack.
Heart Health: Dates are known to help reduce LDL cholesterol hence contributing to a decrease in risk of heart diseases. They are also a rich in potassium, which reduce the risk of stroke and blood pressure.
So go for the date today…