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Their actual place of origin is unknown because it has been cultivated for a very long time from now, but it is assumed that it is native to Iraq. Currently it is being grown in northern Africa, southwest Asia, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq, Sudan, Egypt, Pakistan, Italy, Spain, California and Mexico. In the Gulf States it is consumed as a staple food.
The scientific name for date palm is Phoenix dactylifera, meaning Tree of Life. In Islam the date is known as the fruit of heaven.
Packed in it are multi-vitamins and other essential nutrients that are vital for a healthy body. You can find vitamin A, vitamin B1, vitamin E, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, folic acid, copper, iron, zinc, potassium, magnesium and manganese.
This is how these nutrients work for your body:
Dates are ideal for people who are doing extensive workouts. The high contents of vitamins and minerals work as energy boosters for your body. They are the best source of carbohydrates and dietary fibers.
Dates are known for curing constipation because of their laxative properties. All you need to do is take few dates and soak them in water over night. Consume these soaked dates in the morning empty stomach. The water soluble dietary fibers are the key contents that are beneficial for giving relief in constipation.
Good for Heart
Dates help to keep your heart healthy. They can fortify your heart if consumed twice a week. For best results soak them overnight and consume in the morning. Their high potassium contents can save you from strokes.
The dietary fibers found in dates are also very helpful in lowering bad cholesterol by decreasing its absorption by the body and eliminating it quickly from the body.
Helps in Weight Gain
If you are over slim and want to gain weight then dates are meant for you. It contains sugar, fats and proteins essential for increasing the mass of the body. You can get 3000 calories from 1kg of dates. Make a paste of half cucumber and 4 to 5 dates and consume it daily to solve the problem of over slimming.
Resolves Intestinal Disorders
Dates are beneficial for curing intestinal disorders because of the nicotinic contents found in them. It also inhibits the growth of infectious bacteria in the small and large intestine and helps to increase the growth of friendly bacteria.
Cure for Sexual Weakness
Dates can help to increase sexual stamina. Its seed oil is also very beneficial for increasing sperm count. Soak 6-7 dates in goat’s milk over night, in the morning blend these dates in the same milk and add honey and cardamom powder to this mixture. This tonic is very effective for curing sexual weakness.
Dates are abundant in potassium which is beneficial for treating diarrhea. Dates also facilitate digestion.
You can find plenty of anti-cancer agents and antioxidants in dates that work as powerful fighters against various types of cancer, especially the abdominal cancer. These cancer fighting agents protects your body from harmful effects of free radicals. For patients with abdominal cancers it can prove to be a tonic without any side effect.
Need to get rid of that hangover? Dates are the best remedy for the alcoholic intoxication, if soaked overnight.
Too much acidity in the body may lead to other diseases like cancer. Dates are known to be highly alkaline in nature and therefore help to neutralize the effects of acidity. The best way to get rid of acidity is by consuming dates early in the morning, empty stomach.
Effective for Pregnant Women
Pregnant women should add dates to their diet as they are very beneficial for the growth of the fetus. According to some researches there are some stimulants found in dates that are effective for strengthening the uterus muscles. They can be very helpful for preventing post delivery excessive bleeding and cervical dilation.
Breast feeding mothers should also consume dates as they can be very nutritious for their babies.
The high iron contents found in dates can prove to be a cure for anemic patients. Regular consumption of dates can increase your hemoglobin levels.
Dates are helpful in improving vision and also save you from night blindness.
Storage and consumption
Always choose fresh, lustrous and unwrinkled dates. Keep them in the refrigerator in an airtight jar or Ziploc bag. Avoid choosing dates with sticky surface as they may contain impurities. It is also recommended to thoroughly wash them before consuming; this will remove all the impurities from them.
You can use them in baking and other desserts. For breakfast you can make date milk shake, make it with other fruits like banana and strawberry and you can omit sugar. You can even mix some dates in yogurt to sweeten it.