Dates are the fruit of the date palm tree, which is grown in many tropical regions of the world. Dates grow in large clusters which hang from the top of these palm trees. As they ripen, their skins turn brown and wrinkle as more and more moisture leaves the fruit. This is when they are usually harvested by hand, either by someone climbing up the palm or using a mechanical lift.

Nutritional value

Dates are a natural reservoir of sugars such as sucrose, fructose, and glucose. Fresh dates have about 157 calories per 100 grams, and dry dates have more than 300 calories per 100 grams. Dates include extra nutritional components in the form of proteins, crude fiber, lipids, and antioxidants in addition to their high natural sugar content, making them a functional food with substantial health advantages.

Dates are extremely sweet, containing between 50 and 88 percent of their total weight depending on the cultivar, ripening stage, and overall moisture content.

Dates contain 23 different types of amino acids, some of which are missing from popular fruits like oranges, peaches, grapes, and apples. A small quantity of vitamin C, vitamin B(1) thiamine, B(2) riboflavin, nicotinic acid (niacin), and vitamin A are also present in them.

Health Benefits of Dates

  • High in fiber

Getting enough fiber is important for your overall health. With almost 7 grams of fiber in a 3.5-ounce serving, including dates in your diet is a great way to increase your fiber intake

Fiber can benefit your digestive health by preventing constipation. It promotes regular bowel movements by contributing to the formation of stool

In one study, 21 people who consumed 7 dates per day for 21 days experienced improvements in stool frequency and had a significant increase in bowel movements compared to when they did not eat dates

  • High in disease-fighting antioxidants

Dates provide various antioxidants that have a number of health benefits, including a reduced risk of several diseases. Antioxidants protect your cells from free radicals, which are unstable molecules that may cause harmful reactions in your body and lead to disease. Dates contain several types of antioxidants that may help prevent the development of certain chronic illnesses, such as heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s, and diabetes.

  • May promote brain health

Dates may be helpful for lowering inflammation and preventing plaques from forming in the brain, which may be important for preventing Alzheimer’s disease. One animal study found that mice fed food mixed with dates had significantly better memory and learning ability, as well as less anxiety-related behaviors, compared to those that did not eat them

  • Natural sweetener

Dates are a healthy substitute for white sugar in recipes due to their sweet taste, nutrients, fiber and antioxidants.

The best way to substitute dates for white sugar is to make date paste, as in this recipe. It is made by mixing dates with water in a blender. A rule of thumb is to replace sugar with date paste at a 1:1 ratio.

For example, if the recipe calls for 1 cup of sugar, you’ll replace it with 1 cup of date paste.

  • May support bone health

Dates are a source of bone-friendly minerals including phosphorus, potassium, calcium and magnesium. They are also a source of vitamin K which is needed for healthy, strong bones.

Are dates safe for everyone?

Some people may be allergic to dates and, in addition to this, compounds called sulphites may, for some sensitive individuals, cause allergic symptoms.

A mild reaction may include symptoms such as an itching mouth or tongue, sneezing or a runny nose. If you experience these symptoms after eating dates, speak to your doctor. If a more serious anaphylactic reaction occurs, see a doctor immediately.

Where to buy Dates in Ghana

The Farmer’s Market – Labone

Cedarlane Health Foods Stores


Labone Green market

Obroni Vegetable Market

Yvaya Farm

Rainforest Market

Saagar Supermarket & Impex

Rajni’s Supermarket

MaxMart -A&C Square

Market Express

Shoprite Osu


Farmart Ghana

Fair Way Minimarket


  1. BBC Good Food
  2. HealthLine
  3. News Medical

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