Date Oil: Benefits, Uses, and Health

  • Date seed oil contains various properties and has a unique composition. 
  • You can use date seed oil for various purposes, such as for cooking, as a supplement, beauty treatments, and more. 
  • Date oil provides several health benefits including hair health, skin health, fertility, and as an anti-inflammatory agent.

 

Date seed oil is exactly what it sounds like, which is oil that comes from dates. More specifically, it refers to the oil extracted from the seeds of palm date fruits. Date seed oil has many uses and health benefits. In fact,  it is also actually highly nutritious. In this article, you will learn what date seed oil is and how you can use it. We will also discuss its other benefits,  including those for your hair health, skin health, and more.

What is date seed oil? 

With date fruit production increasing every year, the date seed has become a staple item. They contain about 5-13% oil, which has a good mix of saturated and unsaturated fatty acids. This makes the date seed oil a valuable byproduct of the date fruit industry. Like coconut oil, many find date seed oil to be a good alternative for everyday use.

The date palm has been cultivated for many uses. The fruit itself is part of traditional Mediterranean, Middle Eastern, and African cuisines. These days, you can find dates elsewhere. Because of this, palm cultivation has become more popular.

While the palm dates are harvested, the seeds of the dates are also collected. These are then used to produce date seed oil which, as already stated, has many benefits.  In fact, the date seeds are one of the most nutritious parts of the date fruit. They contain a number of important nutrients. These include fatty acids, proteins, and carbohydrates. They also have essential minerals such as potassium, magnesium, calcium, phosphorus, sodium, and iron.

 

Components of Date Seed Oil

With so many nutrients, it’s no wonder that date seed oil is particularly special. It is rich in dietary fiber, protein, carbohydrates, phenols or phenolic acids, and minerals. These compounds have antioxidant, antibacterial, and antiviral properties.

Date oil also contains five types of fatty acids: oleic acid, linoleic acid, palmitic acid, myristic acid, and lauric acid. Of these, lauric, myristic, and palmitic acids are saturated fatty acids while palmitoleic and oleic acids are monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA).  Meanwhile, linoleic and linoleic acid are polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA). Linoleic acid and oleic acid are also known as omega-6 and omega-9 fatty acids. 

Monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) and polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) are healthier fat choices because they are anti-inflammatory. They are also not stored as fat for energy. Saturated fat, on the other hand, is inflammatory and is stored much more efficiently, leading to weight gain. 

Other important components of date seed oil are phenolic compounds. These are considered to have high levels of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory activity. One gram of date seed oil is thought to have about 0.64-1.27 milligrams of these compounds.  They also give the date palm oil a specific flavor and a longer shelf-life, preventing oxidation.

Date seed oil also contains tocopherols and tocotrienols: two types of vitamin E. While this vitamin is important for metabolic functions, it can also act as a strong antioxidant. It also has anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, and immune-modulating properties. Vitamin E is known to be hepatoprotective and nephroprotective, which means it protects the liver and kidneys respectively.

Uses and Benefits of Date Seed Oil

It can be used as an edible cooking oil and nutritional supplement.

Because of its saturated and unsaturated fatty acid composition, date seed oil can be used in place of other edible oils. As it can withstand high temperatures, it can even be used for frying or sauteing foods. 

In addition to cooking, date seed oil can also be used as a natural nutritional supplement. As previously mentioned, date seed oil contains vitamins, minerals, and essential fatty acids. Oleic acid, or omega-9 fatty acid, in particular, can help reduce blood cholesterol levels and control other factors that can result in heart diseases.  

Date seed oil has a good shelf-life, which makes it useful for skin and hair care. Many people use date seed oil to keep their skin and hair moisturized. Date oil is known to prevent oxidative damage to the skin. It also promotes wound healing and reduces inflammation too. Date seed oil can also be found as a component in several hair products. This is due to their ability to promote hair growth and prevent hair loss. 

 

It promotes hair health.

Many cultures have been using date seed oil for a long time. However, they have not been given enough recognition for the benefits they provide. Recently,  many cosmetic companies have begun introducing date seed oil products. One feature they have focused on is the oil’s ability to stimulate hair follicles. This fosters an ideal environment for hair growth.

Since 90% of the fatty acids in date seed oil come from oleic acid or omega-9. Oil is not water-soluble, so moisture loss can be prevented by using it. This gives hair follicles more flexibility and hydration. On the other hand, linoleic acid, or omega-6, is an essential fatty acid that promotes a healthy scalp. This is perfect for hair growth.

 

It protects your skin.

Skin health is also something that benefits from date seed oil. Studies have shown  that date seed oil has protective effects against damage from UV-B radiation and UV-C radiation. In fact, it can even repair human skin through its antioxidant properties.

This protection can be highly beneficial because your skin is naturally exposed to intense UV rays from the sun. Long exposure to these rays can cause skin damage, like marks, spots, and even skin cancer. We recommend applying the oil directly on your skin as well as in your food. This can protect your skin from damage from oxidative toxins, like UV radiation. 

Since date seed oil contains a high amount of oleic acid, it can also be beneficial in keeping the skin hydrated. This is particularly true during harsh environments, like winter or extreme humidity. Finally, using products with date seed oil or using the oil directly on your skin could prevent exposure to hydrogen peroxide and other oxidative chemicals and toxins.

 

It may improve male fertility. 

 Studies have also revealed that date seed oil has potential effects on sperm motility and quality. Part of this is due to its prevention of oxidative damage from lipid peroxidation. Additionally, it can also improve sperm quality after exposure to oxidative damage. Other studies have also found that date seed oil can increase sperm count. Date seed oil may be used as a dietary supplement and eaten with a healthy diet.

 

It helps reduce inflammation and fight oxidation. 

 Thanks to its stearic, palmitic, and oleic acid content, date seed oil is a good resource for those seeking to treat inflammation. Studies suggest that it can be beneficial when used as a dietary supplement or in addition to other medications. This is because it might increase the potency of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen. Using date seed oil is especially good for those who suffer from acute and chronic inflammation (including from injuries, as the result of arthritis, chronic muscle pain).

 Due to its vitamin E and phenolic acid content, date seed oil can also be a powerful antioxidant. You can help reduce the risk of chronic inflammation, pain, and even cancer by adding it to your diet.

Date oil comes from the date seed and contains as many nutrients as the fruit itself. In recent years, date seed oil has become useful in various settings and offers many health benefits. Using date seed oil as a food component, supplement, or topical treatment can help. They have been known to provide benefits to your hair health, skin health, fertility. They can even reduce inflammation.

Summary

 If you like dates, it would be a good idea to try date seed oil too. This oil is constantly studied because it provides a wide range of nutrients. It also contains many properties that are beneficial to your health. Using date seed oil will give you vitamins, minerals, fiber, antioxidants, and anti-inflammatory agents. They also help boost your hair and skin health, fertility, and more.

Scientific Information

  • ​​Phenolic Acids—are a group of compounds also known as phytochemicals present in plants, vegetables, and fruits. Phenolic compounds are antioxidants and can be anti-inflammatory too.

  • Antioxidantcompounds that help fight free radicals, chemicals, and harmful toxins that cause damage to the body. 

  • Essential fatty acids—polyunsaturated fats that the body absorbs from food. They are part of many metabolic activities and have anti-inflammatory properties. 

  • Immune Modulating Agentsare those that can help boost or suppress immune cells to help fight cancer, infection, inflammation, and other illnesses.

  • UV radiation— a form of radiation emitted from the sun and other artificial sources, like tanning beds. It can cause severe health risks, including cancer.

  • Lipid peroxidation– a chain of reactions that cause the degradation of lipids. This is mainly due to oxidative reactions.

  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)– medicines that are mainly used for pain relief and reducing inflammation.
Written by:
Juliana Tamayo, MS
Nutrition and Dietetics
Reviewed by:

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