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Dates are the fruit of the date palm tree, which is grown in many tropical regions of the world. Dates have become quite popular in recent years.
Almost all dates sold in Western countries are dried.
You can tell whether or not dates are dried based on their appearance. A wrinkled skin indicates they are dried, whereas a smooth skin indicates freshness.
Depending on the variety, fresh dates are fairly small in size and range in color from bright red to bright yellow. Medjool and Deglet Noor dates are the most commonly consumed varieties.
Dates are chewy with a sweet flavor. They are also high in some important nutrients and have a variety of advantages and uses.
This article will discuss 8 health benefits of eating dates and how to incorporate them into your diet.
1. Improves bone health
Dates can work wonders on your bone health. Dates are rich in selenium, manganese, copper, and magnesium, and all of these are required when it comes to keeping our bones healthy, and preventing conditions such as osteoporosis.
2. Excellent Natural Sweetener
Dates are a source of fructose, which is a natural type of sugar found in fruit.
For this reason, dates are very sweet and also have a subtle caramel-like taste. They make a great healthy substitute for white sugar in recipes due to the nutrients, fiber and antioxidants that they provide.
The best way to substitute dates for white sugar is to make date paste. It is made by mixing dates with water in a blender. A rule of thumb is to replace sugar with date paste at a 1:1 ratio.
3. Preserve Bain Function In The Elderly
Degeneration of brain tissue is an accepted reality of aging, although it does not need to be the case. Many of these adverse changes are related to excessive inflammation, which can be slowed down if the effects of cortisol and other oxidants are controlled. Dates are known to be excellent buffers of cortisol, reducing the inflammatory influence of it.
4. Help Prevent Night Blindness
Many people struggle with vision under poor lighting conditions even though their eyes may physically be in great shape. This has many causes, but among them are those caused by a deficiency of Vitamin A or its related carotenoids anti-oxidants.
Dates can also play an important role in delaying macular degeneration of the eye as a result of aging, helping preserve vision for a longer time.
5. Promote Weight Gain
Sounds like an absurd benefit as who would want to gain weight? But yes, if you are too skinny and are looking to put on some pounds, dates could be one of the additions to your diet.
According to a study conducted on lambs, weight gain was observed (by as much as 30%) following the consumption of ground date seeds. This could also be observed in humans, although more research is required.
6. Prevent Hemorrhoids
This holds true, especially in the case of pregnancy. Hemorrhoids are a common complication during pregnancy. And this could be caused by an inadequate fiber intake. Dates are excellent sources of fiber, So they can help prevent hemorrhoids during pregnancy.
7. Improves skin
dates contain vitamins C and D which works on your skin's elasticity, and also keeps your skin smooth. Plus, if you suffer from skin problems, incorporating dates into your diet might help you in the long run. Plus dates also come with anti-ageing benefits, and prevent the accumulation of melanin in your body.
8. Improve Heart Health
Just a handful of dates a day was found to improve heart health. The antioxidants in dates prevent arteries getting hard and clogged with plaque. These antioxidants stimulate cholesterol removal from the artery cells.
Dates also contain isoflavones (the second highest of any fruit) that are known to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.
9. Regulates Blood Pressure
Dates are rich in potassium, and the mineral which helps lower blood pressure levels. One date contains about 167 mg of potassium, which is relatively high compared to other fruits. Not taking adequa te potassium can also lead to kidney stones.
10. Help Control Cholesterol Levels
There are actually many different varieties of dates, with differing nutritional profiles among some of them. By far, the most common variety is the medjool type, but another called the Hallawi has shown potential in reducing blood cholesterol levels. The Hallawi variety also possesses a greater proportion of catechins, compounds related to those in tea that have a cholesterol lowering effect.
They simultaneously reduce levels of bad the bad cholesterol LDL, and raise concentration of good HDL, even though they have a relatively high sugar level. In addition, dates also prevent oxidation of cholesterol, which in turn reduces the likelihood of atherosclerotic deposits getting larger in blood vessels.