What are dates?

Dates are the fruits of Phoenix dactylifera, a species belonging to the Arecaceae family. Dates are grown in warm climate areas of all continents.


What are the nutritional properties of dates?

100 g of dried dates (edible portion) provide 253 calories broken down as follows:

  • 94% carbohydrates
  • 4% protein
  • 2% lipids

100 g of dried dates contain:

  • 17.3 g of water
  • 2.7 g of protein
  • 0.6 g of lipids
  • 63.1 g of soluble sugars
  • 8.7 g of fiber, of which:
  • 1.24 g of soluble fiber
  • 7.49 g of insoluble fiber
  • 2.2 mg of niacin
  • 0.15 mg of riboflavin
  • 0.08 mg of thiamine
  • 5  g of vitamin A (retinol equivalent)
  • 750 mg of potassium
  • 69 mg of calcium
  • 65 mg of phosphorus
  • 5 mg of sodium
  • 2.7 mg of iron

100 g of dates are also a source of:

  • 15  g of folate
  • 0.805 mg of pantothenic acid
  • 0.249 mg of pyridoxine
  • 2.7  g of vitamin K
  • 0.362 mg of copper
  • 54 mg of magnesium
  • 0.296 mg of manganese
  • 0.44 mg of zinc
  • 89  g of beta carotene
  • 23  g of lutein / zeaxanthin.

Dates contain tannins. 


When to not eat dates?

Dates can interfere with diuretics.


Seasonality of dates

Dates are available on the market throughout the year.


Possible benefits and drawbacks of dates

The fibers of dates help lower cholesterol, are a laxative and protect against colon cancer. The tannins are anti-infectives, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and anti-stroke agents. Vitamin A protects vision, mucous membranes and skin and protects from lung cancer and oral cavity. Beta carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin (which guards against macular degeneration) may protect from prostate, breast, endometrium, lung and pancreas disease. The B vitamins are important for the metabolism, as well as Vitamin K, which also promotes good coagulation.

Among the minerals, iron is important for the transport of oxygen, potassium for cardiovascular health, calcium for bones, muscle contraction, coagulation and nerve impulse conduction, manganese for the antioxidant defenses, copper for the production of red blood cells and magnesium for bones.

An allergy to dates is rare. However, parameters can cross-react with pollen of the birch family.