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Updated on February 7, 2011


A Date Palm
A Date Palm
Dates being sold in Morocco
Dates being sold in Morocco


The date palm is native to the Middle East and is referred to as the Tree Of Life in the Bible.

Fruit of date palm- Eaten as fresh dates and dry dates, used in recipes. Gifted during festivals and Muslim weddings, along with other dry fruits. Girls attaining puberty are given dates to eat, as they are rich in iron. Other nutrients include fiber, potassium, vitamins, protein and carbohydrate.

Healthy Snack-Weight loss. Each date is energy giving, loaded with 23 calories. Best to snack on a date instead of reaching for a cookie. Weight watchers can safely consume a couple of dates a day. Since each date contains 29 grams of natural sugars such as fructose, glucose and sucrose, consuming dates is a quick energy booster, uplifting your mood as well. It also contains 31 grams of carbohydrate and 3 grams of dietary fiber.

During the month of Ramzan, Muslims the world over, eat dates to start their day and to break the day's fast as it gives them added energy during the entire day of fasting and also it quickly replenishes the body after the fast.

If you need to stay without food for long, dates can be a healthy snack alternative.

Health Benefits of Dates (Fresh and Dried ):

Being rich in potassium, the nervous system,heart rate and pressure are regulated and cuts the risk of stroke and coronary heart diseases.

Contains antioxidants known as tannins that have anti-hemorrhagic, anti -infective, anti-inflammatory properties. They also help your body develop immunity.

 Prevents undesirable LDL cholesterol absorption in the gut, cutting down on your heart attack risk.

Anemic patients especially women with heavy periods are advised to snack on dates as they are rich in iron.

Bowel movement is set right in constipated patients due to the high fiber content. Prevents colon cancer.

Good source of vitamin A which is good for vision and prevention of lung and oral cavity cancers.

Rich source of antioxidant flavonoids such as beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin.These are known to protect against cancers of the colon, prostate, breast, endometrium, lung, and pancreas.

Zeaxanthin also prevents age related macular degeneration in the elderly.

Vitamin B-complex and vitamin K is present in good quantities in the date fruit. B-complex helps the body metabolize carbohydrate, fat and protein while Vitamin K is essential for bone metabolism and blood coagulation.

Minerals such as calcium, manganese, copper and magnesium are present in dates. Calcium is necessary for bone and teeth, muscle contraction, blood clotting and nerve impulse conduction. The production of red blood cells is aided by copper, while magnesium is necessary for bone growth.

The carbohydrate content makes one be energetic and one does not suffer fatigue while snacking on dates. Sports persons and depressed patients find it beneficial to eat dates.

Nutrient Value Of Dates per 100gm - (USDA National Nutrient Data Base)

Nutrient Value
277 kcal
74.97 gms
1.81 gm
0.15 gm
6.7 gm
696 mg
64 mg
0.44 mg
Vitamin A
149 IU
Vitamin K
Vitamin C
Pantothenic acid
0.05 mg
Beta Carotene

How Many Calories Do Dates Contain

Dried dates are higher in calories than fresh dates. But, both are a great source of iron, fiber, potassium, folate, small amounts of vitamin A and vitamin B. Those suffering from anemia, fatigue and constipation will find dates to be beneficial.

On an average, 4 Oz /100 gm fresh dates contain 100 calories while 4 Oz/100 gm dried dates contain 250 calories.

Always select dates that are evenly colored and not withered for maximum nutritive benefit.

Easy Date Milkshake- Perfect Energy Booster for Kids and Adults alike

Easy Recipes Using Dates

Dates are used in several ways in recipes from across the world. In North America it is mainly used in confections and baked desserts,such as puddings and cakes. Usually finely chopped and added.

Date Milkshake: View video alongside for a delicious cool milkshake using dates, ice cream and milk. Truly refreshing during summer. You can substitute ice cream and milk for yoghurt as is done in the Middle East.

Date Filling: Slit each dry date vertically. Remove the seed. Powder a variety of nuts or a couple of varieties, such as almonds and peanuts. Fill each date slit with the powder, chill and serve.

An Indian Recipe Using Dates- Dates are called Khajur in Hindi and are used in a variety of savory and sweet dishes. Very popular during festivals such as Diwali and marriages.

Date Chutney: Popular hot-sweet dip for samosas and savory snacks. Made with jaggery, tamarind juice and dates.

Dates chopped into small pieces are used in fruit salads, sweet and sour preparations, and savory items. Popular sweets include khajur halwa, date burfi and khajur roll among several others.


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