How Many Dates Should I Eat a Day?


  • Dates are superfoods that have a lot of nutrients and minerals.
  • Dates are high in antioxidants and fiber and are beneficial for heart health, pregnancy, and labor.
  • So, how many dates can an individual eat in a day?

Dates are an excellent addition to your diet because they offer a variety of health benefits! However, just like any food, dates should be consumed in moderation and eaten within a varied diet. The daily recommended number of dates may vary from person to person. It also depends on the health benefits we hope to see from eating dates. Let’s take a look at some of the benefits of eating dates. This will help you decide how many dates are needed to see results!

Dates as an Antioxidant

Dates have some of the highest antioxidant activity. Antioxidants are important because they fight harmful chemicals called free radicals. They may cause a lot of life-threatening diseases. These include diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. Dates are rich in polyphenols, carotenoids, and flavonoids. They help reduce inflammation in the body. Did you know that a 100 gram serving of dates (about 4 dates) has more antioxidants than the same serving size of other fruits? This makes dates a great choice for potentially preventing diseases!

Dates as Great Source of Fiber

Most Americans do not meet their daily recommended fiber intake. Women must eat about 25 grams of fiber per day while men must eat about 38 grams per day. According to the U.S. The Department of Agriculture, just 4 dates, provides almost 20% (about 10 grams) of the daily recommendation for fiber. This makes them an excellent and easy way to meet your fiber goals! Eating enough fiber is essential because it regulates your bowel movements. It also lowers your cholesterol and helps manage your weight. Most importantly, it can help prevent heart disease and type 2 diabetes!

Dates and Heart Health

Some are concerned about the sugar content in dates . However, research continues to indicate that the natural sugar content in dates is not as harmful as added sugars. This is because dates’ sugar does not impact blood glucose levels to the same extent. This is likely due to the presence of fiber in dates. Additionally, they don’t contribute to health risks of eating too much added sugar. A  pilot study found that consuming 100 g or 4 dates a day may improve your triglyceride levels. This is associated with heart health and the risk for developing heart diseases. The same study also found improvements in the levels of oxidative stress. Having high oxidative stress is associated with heart disease and heart attack. It may also lead to Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, diabetes, and cancer.

Dates May Positively Impact Labor and Delivery

Most studies discussed in this article used a serving size of 100 grams. This is equal to about 4 to 5 medium-size dates. This is also closely aligned with the recommended serving size of dates, which is ¼ cup or 5 dates. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, a 100 gram serving of dates provides 375 calories. It also contains 30 grams of protein, 67 grams of carbohydrates, and 6.25 grams of fat. Based on the available data, we recommend eating 3-6 dates per day in order to reap the benefits of these fruits. However, we would like to remind you that it is best to consult your doctor and a registered dietitian before making changes to your regular diet.

So, how many dates should I eat per day?

Most studies discussed in this article used a serving size of 100 grams. This is equal to about 4 to 5 medium-size dates. This is also closely aligned with the recommended serving size of dates, which is ¼ cup or 5 dates. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, a 100 gram serving of dates provides 375 calories. It also contains 30 grams of protein, 67 grams of carbohydrates, and 6.25 grams of fat. Based on the available data, we recommend eating 3-6 dates per day in order to reap the benefits of these fruits. However, we would like to remind you that it is best to consult your doctor and a registered dietitian before making changes to your regular diet.

Summary

Dates are an excellent addition to your diet because they offer a variety of health benefits. They are high in antioxidants and fiber. They are also known to improve heart health, pregnancy, and labor. However, just like any food, dates should be consumed in moderation and eaten within a varied diet. Eating 3 to 6 dates a day should be enough for an individual to absorb all the health benefits dates offer.

Scientific Information

  • Added Sugarscaloric sweeteners that are added to foods as ingredients during food processing.
  • Antioxidants –  are substances that inhibit or delay the oxidation of biologically relevant molecules. 
  • Carbohydrate – are composed of simple sugars (i.e. glucose, fructose, galactose) and are found mainly in plants (usually stored as starches or cellulose).
  • Fiber – macromolecules present in the diet that resist digestion by human endogenous enzymes.
  • Protein – are essential macronutrients that make up enzymes that fuel chemical reactions in the body.
Written by:

Allison Tallman, MS, RDN, CNSC

Registered Dietitian

Reviewed by:
Registered Dietitian
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PubMed Central

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