1. Decrease Cholesterol
Medjool dates are a wise choice when it comes to maintaining healthy cholesterol levels. When you eat them, you increase your insoluble and soluble fiber intake, which in turn can significantly lower cholesterol naturally — particularly LDL (“bad”) cholesterol.
As we know, LDL cholesterol is a major contributing factor to heart attacks, heart disease and stroke, making these tasty dates a great heart-healthy option.
When there is too much cholesterol circulating in the blood, it can create sticky deposits called plaque along the artery walls. Plaque can eventually narrow or block the flow of blood to the brain, heart and other organs.
Blood cells that get caught on the plaque form clots, which can break loose and completely block blood flow through an artery, causing heart attack or stroke. If you suffer from high cholesterol, experts recommend a diet that includes high-fiber foods such as dates.
In fact, research out of Israel found that Medjool dates, along with a variety of other dates, “inhibited LDL oxidation, and most extracts also stimulated cholesterol removal from macrophages.”
2. Prevent & Relieve Constipation
If you’re reading a list of top foods for constipation relief, don’t be surprised if you see dates on the list. The high fiber content of Medjool dates make them a smart choice when it comes to keeping yourself regular.
If you have constipation more than occasionally or have severe pain and/or bleeding, it’s important to check with your doctor because these symptoms can be a sign of a more serious digestive disorder. But before you freak out, if there is no pain or bleeding, in most cases constipation is just a sign that your diet needs more fiber. The average adult needs around 25 to 30 grams of fiber per day to prevent constipation, which is much less than most people typically consume on a daily basis.
Dates have high levels of soluble fiber, which keep bowel movements regular by adding bulk to stool and helping it move faster through the intestines. Next time you’re looking for a natural constipation relief remedy, try having a few Medjool dates.
3. Natural Energy Booster
Need a new go-to for your pre-workout snack or a healthy post-workout option? Try Medjool dates!
Once you try a Medjool date, you won’t be surprised to learn that dates are higher in sugar than many other fruits. However, dates are high in natural sugars like fructose, glucose and sucrose. These sugars are easily processed and utilized by the body for energy.
Consuming a few Medjool dates or including them in a snack is an excellent idea when you’re looking for a healthy surge of energy. Worldwide, dates are used for an afternoon pick-me-up to ward off tiredness. Instead of reaching for another cup of coffee, try a green smoothie recipe that includes some Medjool dates!
4. Reduce Triglyceride Levels
Medjool dates can give your heart a healthy boost. A study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry found Medjool dates are high in antioxidative properties in vitro. Ten healthy subjects consumed 100 grams daily of either Medjool or Hallawi dates for four weeks. According to the study, the consumption of Medjool dates reduced blood triglyceride levels by 8 percent among the participants.
Triglycerides are a type of fat (lipid) found in your blood. Having a high level of triglycerides can increase your risk of heart disease so it’s important to keep your triglycerides at a normal level (less than 150 milligrams per deciliter).
5. Alternative Natural Sweetener
If nature had an actual candy store, Medjool dates would be front and center. When you eat a Medjool date, it can be hard to process that it really is a piece of fruit because it has such candy-like quality to it.
Medjool dates are undeniably sweet but in a completely unprocessed sort of way — so as long as you don’t overdo it, there is no guilt associated with these caramel-like gems.
Research has shown that there is a direct link between increased sugar consumption in food and increased diabetes rates. We all should aim to keep our sugar intake down and be mindful of our sources of sugar. A delicious fruit, like a Medjool date, provides a truly satisfying alternative to eating a candy bar or brownie loaded with refined sugar.
6. Boost Bone Health
The significant amounts of key minerals found in Medjool dates make them superstars when it comes to strengthening bones and fighting off painful and debilitating bone diseases like osteoporosis — thus, add dates to your osteoporosis diet natural treatment plan.
Dates are high in calcium and a food high in phosphorus, which work closely together to build strong bones and teeth. About 85 percent of the body’s phosphorus is in bones and teeth. Phosphorus is needed for the growth, maintenance and repair of all tissues and cells, and for the production of the genetic building blocks, DNA and RNA. Phosphorus is also required to help balance and use other vitamins and minerals, including vitamin D, iodine, magnesium, and zinc.
Calcium is the most abundant mineral in your body. It’s essential for the development and maintenance of strong teeth and bones.
Calcium also keeps the heart, nerves, muscles and other body systems working properly, and it’s probably best known for helping prevent osteoporosis. As people begin to age and their bones start to become weaker, maintaining a diet high in both calcium and phosphorus can ward off unpleasant bone degradation. Eating Medjool dates regularly is one way that you can up your intake of calcium and phosphorus.