Amazing Health Benefits of Dates Fruit

The health benefits of dates fruit are amazing. Let us see this in detail.

Dates are the sweet edible fruits of a species of palm tree grown in tropical regions. Though it is originated from the Middle East and South Asia, it is now being cultivated in many tropical and subtropical regions of the world. Countries in the Middle East and North America are the largest producers and the total annual production amounts to 8.53 million tonnes (2018 data).

Dates Nutrition Facts

Dates are mostly dried and not dehydrated before they come to the market. The drying process makes the sugar more concentrated. This makes them sweeter. The following table depicts the nutrition facts of two important varieties of the date fruits namely Delget Noor Dates and Medjool Dates.

NameDelget Noor Dates Nutrition FactsMedjool Dates Nutrition Facts
Energy282 kcal, 1178 kJ277 kcal, 1160 kJ
Protein2.45 g1.81 g
Water20.53 g21.32 g
Total Lipid0.39 g0.15 g
Carbohydrate75.03 g74.97 g
Total Dietary Fibre8 g6.7 g
Total Sugar (includes NLEA)63.35 g66.47 g
Calcium39 mg64 mg
Iron1.02 mg0.9 mg
Magnesium43 mg54 mg
Phosphorus62 mg62 mg
Potassium656 mg696 mg
Copper0.206 mg0.362 mg
Sodium2 mg1 mg
Vitamin C0.4 mg0 mg
Thiamin0.052 mg0.05 mg
Riboflavin0.066 mg0.06 mg
Niacin1.274 mg1.61 mg
Pantothenic Acid0.589 mg0.805 mg
Vitamin B-60.165 mg0.249 mg
Vitamin E (Alpha-tocopherol)0.05 mg
ReferenceUSDA Nutrition FactsUSDA Nutrition Facts
Dates Nutrition Facts

Moreover, it contains large amounts of phytochemicals and phytoestrogens, according to a study published in Weil Cornell Medicine-Qatar.

Also, the fruit has trace elements like manganese, zinc, selenium, fluorine, and cobalt. Yet, it is a poor source of protein. Furthermore, it is rich in fiber and free of fats and cholesterol.

However, there are more than 250 varieties (cultivars) and the nutrition value may differ according to the variety.

Benefits of Dates for Women

Now, let us examine what are the health benefits of dates for women. Various studies suggest that date fruit is beneficial to women during pregnancy, menstruation, and menopause.

Benefits of dates for women’s Periods

Iron is an essential part of hemoglobin found in red blood cells. A woman aged between 19 and 50 requires 18 to 21 mg of iron daily. Iron deficiency leads to anemia. Menstruating women are at risk of iron deficiency if sufficient dietary iron is not available to replace menstrual and other losses of iron. Moreover, people suffering from menorrhagia are also at high risk of Iron Deficiency Anemia (IDA) that requires urgent medical care. It is possible to prevent these health conditions with a sound diet that includes dates fruit.

Benefits of dates for women in Pregnancy

Pregnant Women are another class of people who are at risk of iron deficiency. According to WHO, a pregnant woman requires 30 mg to 60 mg of elemental iron daily. Hence, the diet can be supplemented with date fruits. This may help to reduce the manifestations of iron deficiency.

Furthermore, pregnant women require nutritious food for the mother and fetus. Date fruits contain a lot of minerals, trace elements, and multivitamins. Hence it serves as a complete food for pregnant women. The phytosterols and phytoestrogens found in date fruit increase plasma estrogens in the body which has proapoptotic and antioxidant activity.

Also, date fruit can repair the DNA of the fetus and prevent genetic disorders. (Saryono et al).

A study that investigates the effect of date fruit on labor parameters and delivery outcomes concludes that the consumption of date fruit in the last four weeks before labor notably reduced the induction and augmentation of labor, and also produced a more favorable, yet insignificant, delivery outcome.

Dates have a high amount of insoluble fiber that can help the defecation process run smoothly. Eight date fruits can give at least five grams of fiber.

Therefore, date fruit consumption during pregnancy is a good supplement to be considered. It not only helps to meet the nutritious requirement but also helps in reducing the labor intervention and safe delivery.

Benefits of dates for women’s Fertility

One of the main reasons for infertility in women is the high level of free radicals in the body. According to a study by Saryono et al, free radicals can affect implantation and early embryonic development. The anti-oxidant content of the date fruit has been already established by many studies. Moreover, the high polyphenol content in the date fruit has the potential to enhance the antioxidant activity and may boost fertility in women (Further studies required to confirm this hypothesis).

Benefits of dates for women’s skin

A study was conducted by Sidra Meer et al (2017) to explore the benefits of date fruit for skincare. In this study, eleven healthy women were recruited to study the efficacy of date fruit extract on their skin. Before the beginning of the study, the composition of the extract was analyzed to better understand the mechanism behind its impact on the skin. The efficacy was evaluated every week with baseline values for eight weeks.

The study found that the extract improved all parameters it has investigated like skin elasticity, redness, brightness, pigmentation, and hydration. Overall it led to improve facial skin because of its whitening, anti-inflammatory, anti-acne, moisturizing, and anti-aging effects. Also, it doesn’t have any adverse reactions.

Benefits of Dates for Men

Dates and Male Fertility

In traditional Egyptian medicine. the pollen of date palms has been long used as a remedy for infertility in humans.

A study by Hassan et al (2012) concludes that Date Palm Pollens provides a protective effect against testicular dysfunction in rats. Another study conducted on rats by SemalinaWahyudi et al (2015) concludes that the dates affect sperm motility and morphology of infertile rats, meaning dates may improve fertility in men.

Benefits of Dates for Babies and Children

As we have already stated, dates are full of vitamins and minerals. Yet they are high in naturally occurring sugar. Hence they should be used in moderation.

Moreover, it is a common choking hazard for babies as the dates contain hard inedible pits. Therefore, before serving the babies, the dates should be pitted and minced. If the pitted dates are soaked in the hot water, the risk of choking will be lesser.

It is not recommeded for babies aged less than eighteen months.

Dates in Weight Management

Diet and exercise are the only two ways that can be effectively used for weight management. Functional foods like date fruits play an important role in weight management.

Date fruits are rich in dietary fiber that hinders the ingestion cycle in the internal organ. As it causes you to feel more full, you burn-through lesser food. Obviously, it contributes to weight loss. Also, it helps the production of short-chain fatty acids that boosts metabolism. Those who want to lose weight must consume an adequate quantity of quality proteins. As we already know, date fruits are a good source of quality protein. Additionally, date fruits have a minimal amount of fatty acids only. Therefore, date fruits are a good choice for those who need to shed weight.

If you need to build muscles, you require an adequate measure of protein. It assists with building muscles as well as repairs them. Moreover, the high measure of potassium found in dates helps to build muscles and proteins in the body. Overall, it is not a bad idea to have four to six dates before your exercise.

Dates for Cardiac Patients

For years, there has been a controversial debate among doctors and researchers over the effect of iron on heart disease. Many studies suggest that a high level of iron in the blood increases the risk of heart problems. A Japanese study concludes that too much iron may lead to a heart attack.

Dates are rich in iron. Hence those prone to heart diseases should consult their health care provider before including dates in their diet.

Bottom Line

Date fruit can be an ideal food for daily intake as it provides a wide range of important nutrients and offers potential health benefits. Moreover, we can store them for longer periods. Also by incorporating date fruit into the diet, we can prevent and reduce the risk of deadly diseases like diabetes mellitus, hypertension, cardiac diseases, stroke, and even certain types of cancer.


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