Any food that tastes like syrupy caramel must be bad for us, right?!
For those of you who love dates, you know what I'm talking about! But rather than being a naughty treat, dates are one of the most healthful foods we can eat. At Raw Island, we especially love the Medjool variety for its juicy and toffee-like texture and taste, and these form the basis of our delicious Date Mylks.
Dates have long been enjoyed since Biblical times, and the palm trees, from which they grow, are considered one of the oldest cultivated plants in history. They’re enjoyed to this day for their delicious and sweet taste, particularly throughout the Middle East, where they’ve also provided populations living in arid regions with a nutritious and sustainable food source.
So what makes dates one of the most nutrient-rich foods on the planet?
As we all know, fibre is essential for a healthy digestive system, and dates are exceptionally high, with around 7g of fibre per 100g. The type of fibre found in dates is soluble, which is especially good because this pulls water into the digestive tract, helping to form healthy stools.
2. Potassium and Magnesium
Dates are particularly high in potassium and magnesium. These two minerals are crucial for proper nerve and muscle function, blood pressure and blood glucose regulation.
3. Other minerals
Aside from potassium and magnesium, dates are rich sources of selenium, manganese, calcium, zinc, sodium and phosphorous, which are all also essential for heart health, bones, muscles and nervous system. With depletion in any one of these minerals, your body will start to show symptoms of imbalance, such as digestive disorders, heart arrhythmias, muscle cramps and weakness, fatigue and stiff joints, amongst others.
4. High in Iron
The high iron content in dates makes them an ideal fruit source for those suffering from Anaemia. 100g of dates provides around 11% of your RDI. At Raw Island, we also pre-soak our dates prior to blending which helps iron absorption rate.
5. Low fat
While more calorically dense than many other fruits, dates are however, extremely low in fat and cholesterol-free, making them suitable for ensuring correct glucose uptake. With very little fat and high fructose and glucose content, dates make an amazing snack before exercise, and help prevent blood sugar spikes due to their high fibre content.
With delicious dates, you can truly have your cake- and eat it!