According to data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), dates have an abundance of micronutrients, which means they also provide multiple health benefits. This article covers 7 key advantages of eating dates regularly.
Dates Can Aid Healthy Digestion
Like most fruits and vegetables, dates are packed with fiber. According to the U.S. Dietary Guidelines for Americans, fiber is a nutrient concern as more than 90 percent of Americans do not consume enough of it.
According to Jenna Volpe, RDN, the fiber, and potential prebiotics in dates support healthy digestion. Per Harvard, eating enough fiber is also linked with a lower risk of multiple diseases such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
Dates May Help With Blood Sugar Control
Researchers estimate that dates contain more than 70 percent sugar but this doesn’t mean diabetic individuals must avoid them. Thanks to their high fiber content, dates are considered low-glycemic food.
The American Diabetes Association (ADA) recommends including low-glycemic fruits like dates as part of a balanced meal plan. Researchers also note that dates could help reduce blood sugar levels in people with diabetes.
Antioxidants Found in Dates May Support Heart Health
While their fiber could help stave off heart disease, dates are also rich in antioxidants that could benefit vascular health.
According to a study published in the January 2020 issue of Nutrients, dates can contain almost 15 different antioxidants, which could play a role in reducing the risk of developing heart disease, and atherosclerosis.
Dates Have Prebiotic Potential
By adding dates to your diet, you could improve your gut health as they contain prebiotics. This contains live microorganisms that maintain or improve the community of bacteria in your gut and overall body.
The prebiotic compounds in dates include soluble fiber, oligosaccharides, and soluble fiber. This can feed the good gut microbes and improve magnesium and calcium absorption.
Dates Are Rich in Minerals That Are Good For Healthy Bones
Dates are particularly abundant in potassium, copper, and iron, crucial for strong and healthy bones.
Dates May Help With Labor and Delivery During Childbirth
While this hasn’t been proven, research suggests dates could shorten labor and reduce the need for oxytocin injections, speeding up labor and increasing contractions.
Dates May Offer Some Protection Against Certain Cancers
According to the American Cancer Society, no food could safeguard against cancer. However, dates are loaded with various antioxidants that could protect against certain types of cancers.
According to one study, Medjool dates contain antioxidant properties and could have anticancer activity on breast cancer cells.
Thanks to their high-nutrition diet, you only need a few dates to reap the potential benefits. You can snack on them or incorporate them into smoothies, yogurt, cereal, or granola bars.