12 Dates Benefits: Are Dates Good For Your Health In 2024?

mitchelle morgan

Reviewed by Sevginur Akdas, PhD
dates benefits
Dates have many health benefits. Photo: YARUNIV Studio/Shutterstock

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Dates have become quite popular and are advertised as fruits for weight loss. However, how does this fruit from a date palm tree benefit the body?

Anyone wanting to partake in sweet dried fruits may want to know the different date benefits. Dates have a delightful nutritional profile, high in fiber and antioxidants. They may also help to promote natural labor, improve brain function, and boost heart health.

Read on and discover the different date benefits today.

Health Benefits Of Dates

  1. Supplies a rich source of nutrients
  2. High in beneficial fiber.
  3. Provides various antioxidants.
  4. It may improve brain function.
  5. It may benefit natural childbirth.
  6. Healthy substitute for white sugar.
  7. Gives a youthful glow.
  8. Helps with blood sugar control.
  9. It may improve bone health. 
  10. It may reduce the risk of cancer.
  11. It may improve male fertility.
  12. It may support good heart health.

Health Benefits Of Dates

Health Benefits Of Dates
Eat dates and enjoy numerous health benefits. Photo: AtlasStudio/Shutterstock

The benefits of dates fruit vary, and adding them to your diet is a great idea. Eating dates isn’t new, as the fruits have been a delicacy for centuries.

You can find dried dates in the market and enjoy the health benefits of dates below.

Nutrient Supply

Dates are naturally sweet and packed with crucial nutrients. They are packed with nutrients, including essential minerals, thus making them a good addition to healthy diet plans.

Dried dates have a higher caloric content than fresh ones. One hundred grams of dried dates contain 277 calories,[1] 75 grams of carbs,[2] and two grams of protein. If you ate 100 grams of dates, which is about 8-10 dates, your body would benefit from essential minerals[3] such as iron, manganese, copper, magnesium, and potassium. In addition, dates contain vitamins A, B6, and K.

Rich In Beneficial Fiber

Dates are rich in beneficial fiber[4] that improves your health and wellness. One hundred grams of dried dates contain seven grams[1] of fiber. Fiber helps with proper digestion once you consume food.

Fiber is crucial for digestive health[5] since it helps smoothen the process of eliminating waste. You can have an easier time since there’s no risk of constipation. Eating healthy dates rich in fiber promotes regular bowel movements.

You can experience better stool frequency by just eating a few dates a day. One study involved 21 participants consuming seven dates[6] for three weeks. Results show the participants all experienced better stool frequency after they ate dates.

It’s good to eat dates, even as you take a green powder to improve digestion. The best green powders contain fiber, like dates, and help with constipation.

Provides Various Antioxidants

Another benefit of dates is providing antioxidants.[7] Antioxidants are highly beneficial since they help reduce the risk of chronic diseases.

If you eat dates, your body has a chance of protecting your cells from free radicals.[8] These are unstable molecules that lead to harmful reactions in the body. Once such reactions occur, you are at high risk of becoming sick.

Dates have a higher antioxidant content than dried raisings, palms, and figs.

One of the most potent antioxidants from dates is flavonoids.[9] Eating dates rich in flavonoids helps reduce inflammation in the body. Potentially, that can help prevent chronic illnesses such as diabetes and Alzheimer’s[10] disease.

Another potent antioxidant is phenolic acid.[11] It’s known for its anti-inflammatory properties that help in disease prevention.

May Improve Brain Function

Dates are an excellent fruit to have to boost brain health. Eating these sweet fruits improves memory and learning because of their neuroprotective properties.[12]

As researchers showed in preclinic studies, they may also help lower amyloid beta protein levels.[12] Having loads of amyloid beta proteins leads to plaque formation in the brain. Once you have numerous plaques, cellular functions and communication between brain cells are disrupted.

Dates are high in beneficial antioxidants such as flavonoids[13] that reduce brain and body inflammation.

May Benefit Natural Childbirth

The benefits of dates for women’s health are being examined in the scientific world. Eating dates when pregnant may help ease labor and reduce its duration.

Frankly, there’s little data on how long you should eat dates before giving birth. However, evidence shows that eating the fruit before your due date[14] is beneficial.

Dates contain specific compounds that stimulate oxytocin receptors.[15] You need oxytocin on your due date for better labor contractions.

They also help in boosting energy levels. Dates are high in carbohydrates[16] and natural sugars. Both come in handy when you need lots of energy during natural childbirth.

Healthy Substitute For White Sugar

Healthy Substitute For White Sugar
Dates are an excellent alternative to white sugar. Photo: Drazen Zigic/Shutterstock

Dates are also good substitutes for white sugar. Many people prefer to steer clear of added sugar[17] since it’s harmful.

Dates are a natural sweetener that contains fructose and glucose.[18] The fruits are sweet and an excellent way to satisfy sugar cravings. Many people claim dates have a caramel-like taste.

Added sugar has little benefit to the body and can lead to health issues such as obesity. An alternative to added sugar, date fruit,[19] is beneficial since you enjoy the sweetness, essential minerals, and other benefits.

So, consider making a date paste to replace white sugar from your diet. Simply mix dates with water and blend to get a good paste. Also, you can snack on dates instead of cookies, biscuits, and cakes.

Gives A Youthful Glow

Eating a few grapes every day can help improve your skin health and give you a youthful glow. Dates are rich in antioxidants that help reduce free radical levels in the body.

If you experience issues such as acne leading to inflammation, dates can help. The antioxidants have anti-inflammatory properties[20] and help reduce overall cell damage.

Dates also contain pantothenic acid[9] that benefits the skin from within. It helps to improve the skin’s barrier and reduce the chances of acne breakouts.

May Help With Blood Sugar Control   

It’s common to wonder if dates are good to eat since they contain many natural sugars. People with diabetes make extra effort to control blood sugar levels. So, you might wonder, ‘Are dates good for you?’

You can enjoy a few dates as healthy snacks. Dates, when eaten in moderation, won’t cause a spike in blood sugar levels.[21] They’re categorized as low glycemic index foods despite the sweetness.

For example, eating two dates equals a glycemic index[22] of 49. At the same time, you get 36 grams of carbohydrates.

The high fiber content in dates can help control blood sugar levels. Fiber is handy during digestion since it helps slow down the process.[23] Slow digestion of carbs helps reduce the chances of a blood sugar spike

May Improve Bone Health

Lastly, eating dates may improve bone health. Dates are a rich source of essential minerals. They contain calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium,[3] which benefit bone health.[24]

A deficiency of such minerals can lead to health issues such as osteoporosis.[25]

May Reduce The Risk Of Cancer

 Eating dates with a sweet flavor may reduce the risk of cancer[26] in the body. It’s because dates contain beta D-glucan, which has antitumor properties.

In addition, dates have a high concentration of antioxidants[27] that help eliminate free radicals in the body. Free radicals are elements that cause cancer, and eating dates helps reduce the chances of it happening. Eat dates daily to boost your health and well-being.

May Help Improve Male Fertility

Dates may help improve fertility among men. Research shows that dates’ essential minerals and vitamins can help improve sperm count and sperm motility.

In addition, it helps boost sexual libido and overall performance.[28]

Dates contain microelements such as sterols and estrone that benefit male fertility greatly. The fruits also improve sperm quality, which is important in reproduction.[29] Consult with a registered dietitian before consuming dates to improve libido.

May Support Heart Health

Dates are low-calorie and are good for preventing diseases such as heart disease.[21]

Remember, dates are high in antioxidants that boost good health, protect the body, including the heart, and prevent cardiovascular diseases. Speak to a registered dietitian nutritionist before consuming dates to improve heart health. 

What Are Dates?

Dates are a high-fibrous, naturally sweet fruit that grows on date palm trees. A date fruit contains loads of natural sugars such as fructose and glucose. It’s an edible sweet fruit cultivated in North Africa and the Middle East.

Date palm trees are majestic and can grow quite tall. One tree can take four to eight years before you start to harvest fruits. 

How Many Dates Can I Eat A Day?

Dates are high in natural sugars, so you can have five or six dates daily. To consume less sugar, consider having one or two dates daily. 

Possible Side Effects

Numerous date fruit benefits make the sweet fruit a hit. However, there are some potential side effects worth noting.

Eating dates is a good idea, but only if they don’t affect your health. For example, it’s best to avoid eating dates if you have fructose intolerance[30] because they are rich in natural sugar.

In addition, be cautious of eating dates if you are allergic. People who experience an allergic reaction after eating dates may present symptoms such as skin rashes. Also, you may end up experiencing abdominal issues. 

Types Of Dates

There are many reasons to consider eating date fruits[31] today. And you have a wide variety to choose from. Some of the best types of dates include:

  • Mazafati dates.
  • Thoory dates.
  • Medjool dates.
  • Dayri dates.
  • Piarom dates.
  • Halawy dates.
  • Barhi dates.
  • Sayer dates. 

How To Eat Dates

Eating dates is straightforward. Pick a dried date fruit, split it open, remove the seed, and consume the flesh. Or, you can chop up date fruits and add them to your tasty treats. 

Final Words

Dates have loads of essential nutrients that benefit better body function. In addition, eating dates can help boost antioxidant levels in the body and improve brain function and heart health.

Apart from dates’ health benefits, also consider some potential side effects. People with fructose intolerance should avoid dates that are high in natural sugars. Sweet date fruits may trigger allergic reactions, leading to issues such as skin rashes.  

Speak to a registered dietician before you consume dates; that way, you will make the best dietary decisions. 

Frequently Asked Questions

How many dates should I eat a day?

Eating five or six dates a day is possible, especially if you don’t experience any side effects. However, lower the amount to one or two if you want to consume less sugar.

What are the benefits of eating dates daily?

Eating dates daily ensures you get beneficial minerals and vitamins. In addition, dates are a rich source of fiber and antioxidants. They may help boost better brain health, glowing skin, and bone health.

Do dates affect blood pressure?

Dates are beneficial in that they can help lower blood pressure.[2] The fruits are high in potassium and low in sodium, which helps stabilize blood pressure.

Are dates a superfood?

Yes, dates are considered a superfood. The fruits are highly nutritious and also pack loads of beneficial antioxidants. You can take fruit and vegetable supplements that contain dates to boost your health.

Are dates high in sugar?

Yes, dates are high in natural sugars, which is good for boosting energy levels.[32] However, consuming too much sugar can lead to issues such as weight gain.

Are dried dates healthy?

Yes, dried dates are healthy. However, dried dates contain more sugar than fresh ones. In addition, some dates can contain petroleum wax that’s not healthy.

+ 32 Sources

EHproject has strict sourcing guidelines and relies on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical associations. We work mostly with peer-reviewed studies to ensure accurate information. We avoid using tertiary references. You can learn more about how we ensure our content is accurate and current by reading our editorial policy.

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Mitchelle Morgan is a health and wellness writer with over 10 years of experience. She holds a Master's in Communication. Her mission is to provide readers with information that helps them live a better lifestyle. All… See More