I have a complete obsession with dates. My previous experiences with them were limited to the occasional date loaf or a batch of date scones, but thanks to the bliss ball craze (otherwise referred to as wholefood balls), my interest in them has been reinvigorated and now I can’t get enough of them.
Here are seven reasons you should be eating more dates:
1. Dates are naturally sweet
If you want to cut back your intake of processed sugar, dates can provide a natural sweetness in cooking, smoothies, salads, baking and even in beverages. There is a beautiful Ayurvedic drink to help improve your sleep called Golden Milk which is infused with the sweetness from chopped dates as you boil the ingredients – an idea for your next hot chocolate or tea, maybe?
2. Dates are rich in magnesium
Magnesium is important for bone health, supports immunity, assists in relaxing muscles and nerves, and helps regulate other important nutrients in your body.
3. Dates have plenty of dietary fibre
Good fibre intake promotes good digestive health and can also reduce the absorption of LDL/bad cholesterol in the gut. Eat more dates to keep your tum happy and healthy!
4. Dates are a great source of iron
Ten dates contains 1.3mg of non-haem (plant based) iron which is similar to the iron content of one cup of porridge, or two slices of multigrain bread.
5. Dates are an easy snack
Grown from the date palm, this sweet fruit which is thought to originate from the lands around Iraq is typically dried and the pit/stone may or may not be removed before it reaches our supermarket shelves. Pack a handful of dried dates into a small container or bag and you’ve got yourself a simple, quick option for when you feel like snack with natural energy.
6. Dates may be a natural medicine
Used in the traditional medicines of many ancient cultures (including ancient Egyptian culture, Chinese herbal medicine and Indian Ayurveda) for their healing properties, modern studies have indicated dates may have anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant and anti-tumour properties.
7. Dates contain potassium
Potassium helps regulate the body’s heart rate and blood pressure which means dates may have a positive effect on your cardiovascular health.
Looking for more ways to add dates to your diet?
If you can’t be bothered making something using dates yourself, I‘m in love with Tasti’s new range of well priced, healthy wholefood snacks – each product contains more than 50% dates. Not to mention they’re conveniently packaged and easy to keep in the car glovebox, work desk drawer or in your handbag for on-the-go emergencies.
Made Simple Bars and Smooshed Wholefood Balls are made of natural ingredients pressed together to create a delish, healthy snack. There’s no added sugar as the sweetness comes from the dates, so even my 1-year-old Miss E has been enjoying a little of mine at break time! You can find them at all leading supermarkets in the muesli bar section or in some stores in the health snacks section.
I’ve got one of each flavour from Tasti’s new range of Smooshed Wholefood Balls and Made Simple Wholefood Bars to give away to one lucky reader. Enter here!
Thanks to Tasti for teaming up with me for this post
Images / NZ Real Health