Dates are a fruit that grows from the family Arecaceae palm trees of the genus phoenix. The scientific name is the date palm phoenix dactylifera. Dates are believed to originate from the land around the Nile and the Euphrates. Now palm tree widely cultivated in warm temperate regions on all continents, including Africa, Australia and the United States (California).
Fresh dates have fibrous flesh soft and very sweet taste, like a mixture of molasses and honey. A date containing simple sugars like fructose and dextrose are easily digested and quickly recharge the body's energy. Because of these characteristics, it is suitable dates for the commencement of fasting.
Dates have a long list of nutrients that are beneficial to the body. The table at right shows the nutrient and non-nutrient elements are there on dates.
Dates contain sugar cooked about 80%, the remainder consists of protein, fat and mineral products including copper, iron, magnesium and folic acid. Dates are rich in fiber and an excellent source of potassium. Five dates (about 45 grams) contains about 115 calories, nearly all from carbohydrates.
12 Benefits Of Dates
1. Bedouin Arabs, who eat dates on a regular basis, showed a very low incidence rate of cancer and heart disease.
2. Dates are rich in fiber which prevents the absorption of LDL cholesterol in the intestine. Palm fiber content also helps to protect the intestinal mucous membrane by decreasing exposure and binding chemical that causes colon cancer.
3. As food laxative (laxative food), dates useful launched bowel movements and prevent constipation.
4. Dates contain antioxidants known as tannins. Tannins are known to be anti-infective, anti-inflammatory and anti-hemorrhagic.
5. Dates are a source of vitamin A, which is known to have antioxidant properties and is essential for eye health. Vitamin A also required maintaining healthy skin. Consumption of natural fruits rich in vitamin A is known to help protect against lung cancer and oral cavity.
6. Dates are an excellent source of iron either. Iron is a component of hemoglobin in red blood cells that determine blood oxygen carrying capacity.
7. Potassium in dates are an important component of cell and body fluids that helps control heart rate and blood pressure, thus providing protection against coronary heart disease and stroke.
8. Calcium is an essential mineral in the formation of bones and teeth, and is needed by the body for muscle contraction, blood clotting and nerve impulse conduction.
9. Manganese is used by the body as an element of support for the antioxidant enzyme superoxide dismutase.
10. Copper is required in the production of red blood cells.
11. Magnesium is essential for bone growth.
12. Dates are rich in vitamin K and vitamin B-complex, namely pyridoxine (vitamin B-6), niacin, pantothenic acid and riboflavin. This vitamin helps the body metabolize carbohydrates, proteins and fats. Vitamin K is important in blood clotting and bone metabolism.