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Dates Health Benefits

Dried or fresh, dates are power packed with nutrition. Understand all about the dates health benefits by reading through this article.
Dates are harvested from the date palm tree, and has been an important source of nourishment to the entire Middle East and Northern Africa for over a thousand years. The date is a dark reddish brown, oval fruit with a seed in it, and its skin is wrinkled and coated with a sticky film. The inside of this fruit is fleshy and sticky to feel. Dates are mostly eaten fresh or dried, either as a snack or incorporated in meals. This oldest cultivated fruit of the world has been endowed by various health benefits, and has been an important part of the Middle Eastern cuisine. The prized medjool dates health benefits are slightly more in comparison to other dates, and this particular type is used mostly in celebration and festivities in parts of the Middle East. As you read further down, you will begin to acknowledge the fact that dates health benefits surpass many other fruits.

Dates Nutrition Facts
The below-mentioned nutritional table is for one ounce of dates, equivalent to 28g.

Nutrient Nutritional Value
Calories 77.5 calories
Calcium 17.9 mg
Protein 0.5 g
Potassium 195 mg
Magnesium 15.1 mg
Phosphorous 17.4 mg
Vitamin A 41.7 IU
Folate 4.2 mcg
Carbohydrates 21.0 g

Dates Health Benefits
This tiny fruit has more potassium than even a banana does! Loaded with high dietary fiber, and dismissive quantities of calories, fat, cholesterol and sodium make this fruit a vital source of nutrients. An interesting fact about dates is that it is one of the important fruits consumed after breaking fast during the Ramadan holy month in the Arab countries. Just a handful, increases the energy levels of the body that has received no nourishment throughout the day, during fast. Dates are energy boosters with naturally occurring sugars such as fructose, glucose and sucrose that provide the body with loads of energy.

Dates are one of the best natural sources of potassium, an essential mineral needed by the body to maintain muscle contractions, and smooth functioning of the heart muscles. As potassium does not get stored in the body, a regular consumption of dates will continually replenish the body and aid in maintaining a healthy nervous system and the right balance of the body's metabolism. Calcium and magnesium present in the dates ensure healthy bone development and energy metabolism. Important vitamins, like vitamin A and a variety of B-complex vitamins (thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, etc) help fight off many infections to maintain and develop a healthy body. Dates contain vital amino acids that aid in smooth digestion and the adequate nicotinic content in them helps cure intestinal disturbances.

A regular consumption of dates inhibits the growth of pathological organisms, and promotes friendly bacteria in the intestines. Dates have a laxative effect on the digestive system and can be beneficial for those suffering from constipation. As their effect on the intestines and the digestive system are very promising, they are effective in preventing abdominal cancer.

Dried dates health benefits are similar to those that are fresh, except that the former is higher in calories. Health benefits of dates can be derived by eating a handful everyday, either fresh or as dried fruits, whole or chopped, as a snack or part of a meal. Milk boiled with dates enhances the nutritive value of the milk. A natural sweetener, dates syrup can be easily substituted in desserts. This tiny fruit belies its size as against its nutritional value.
By Loveleena Rajeev
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