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. Very Nutritious

Dates have an excellent nutrition profile.

Since they’re dried, their calorie content is higher than most fresh fruit. The calorie content of dates is similar to that of other dried fruits, such as raisins and figs (1).

Most of the calories in dates come from carbs. The rest are from a very small amount of protein. Despite their calories, dates contain some important vitamins and minerals in addition to a significant amount of fiber.

A 3.5-ounce (100-gram) serving provides the following nutrients (1):

  • Calories: 277
  • Carbs: 75 grams
  • Fiber: 7 grams
  • Protein: 2 grams
  • Potassium: 20% of the RDI
  • Magnesium: 14% of the RDI
  • Copper: 18% of the RDI
  • Manganese: 15% of the RDI
  • Iron: 5% of the RDI
  • Vitamin B6: 12% of the RDI
  • Dates are also high in antioxidants, which may contribute to many of their health benefits (2).

    Summary Dates contain several vitamins and minerals, in addition to fiber and antioxidants. However, they are high in calories since they are a dried fruit.

    2. High in Fiber Getting enough fiber is important for your overall health.

    With almost 7 grams of fiber in a 3.5-ounce serving, including dates in your diet is a great way to increase your fiber intake (1).

    Fiber can benefit your digestive health by preventing constipation. It promotes regular bowel movements by contributing to the formation of stool (3).

    In one study, 21 people who consumed 7 dates per day for 21 days experienced improvements in stool frequency and had a significant increase in bowel movements compared to when they did not eat dates (4).

    Furthermore, the fiber in dates may be beneficial for blood sugar control. Fiber slows digestion and may help prevent blood sugar levels from spiking too high after eating (5).

    For this reason, dates have a low glycemic index (GI), which measures how quickly your blood sugar rises after eating a certain food (6).

    Summary Dates are high in fiber, which may be beneficial for preventing constipation and controlling blood sugar control.

    3. High in Disease-Fighting Antioxidants Dates provide various antioxidants that have a number of health benefits to offer, including a reduced risk of several diseases.

    Antioxidants protect your cells from free radicals, which are unstable molecules that may cause harmful reactions in your body and lead to disease (7).

    Compared to similar types of fruit, such as figs and dried plums, dates appear to have the highest antioxidant content (8).

    Here’s an overview of the three most potent antioxidants in dates:

  • Flavonoids: Flavonoids are powerful antioxidants that may help reduce inflammation and have been studied for their potential to reduce the risk of diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease and certain types of cancer (2, 9).
  • Carotenoids: Carotenoids are proven to promote heart health and may also reduce the risk of eye-related disorders, such as macular degeneration (2, 10).
  • Phenolic acid: Known for its anti-inflammatory properties, phenolic acid may help lower the risk of cancer and heart disease (11, 12).
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