How Many Dates Should You Eat a Day? 18 Benefits & 6 Side Effects (2024)

  • 18 Health Benefits
    • What are the health benefits of having dates every day?
  • 5 Side Effects
    • What are the side effects of eating dates?
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How Many Dates Should You Eat a Day? 18 Benefits & 6 Side Effects (1)

Apart from minerals and vitamins, dates are the best source of antioxidants.

It is ideal to have 100 g of dates or a handful of dates daily to get all the essential nutrients. However,the quantity to be consumed may differ from person to person based on calorie needs and underlying health conditions. You can ask a nutritionist how many dates you need to eat daily.

On average, a 100 g serving of dates contains the following:

  • Calories: 314 kcal
  • Protein: 2.14 gram
  • Fat: 0.38 grams
  • Carbohydrates: 80.6 grams
  • Fiber: 6.7 grams
  • Sugar: 66 grams

Apart from minerals and vitamins, dates are the best source of antioxidants. Dates are also rich in a trace mineral called selenium which may decrease the risk of bladder cancer and prostate cancer.

What are the health benefits of having dates every day?

One study concluded that dates are almost an ideal food because they contain a wide range of essential nutrients and potential health benefits. Substituting your evening snacks with dates has numerous advantages because it is loaded with dietary fibers and packed with vitamins and minerals. The various health benefits of dates include the following:

  1. Low glycemic index: As dates are high in fructose, the dates are naturally sweet. Dates have a low glycemic index; hence, it relatively has a mild impact on blood sugar levels. Foods with a low glycemic index cause less increase in blood sugar levels. Thus they are suitable for patients with diabetes.
  2. Lowers the risk of heart disease: Dates are high in dietary fibers, which helps to reduce low-density lipoproteins (LDL) cholesterol or bad cholesterol. Dietary fibers tend to bind with cholesterol and prevent their absorption into the bloodstream. Thus, the fatty deposition in the arteries is prevented, reducing the risk of heart disease.
  3. Rich in antioxidants:Dates are rich in antioxidants, which can lower yourrisk of several diseases. Antioxidants protect your cells from free radicals and unstable molecules that may cause harmful reactions in your body and lead to disease.
  4. Healthy digestion: Due to high soluble and insoluble fiber content, dates are ideal for healthy digestion. Dates may prevent constipation, diarrhea,and inflammation of the digestive tract.
  5. Promotes good gut bacteria: Dates are rich in essential compounds, such as amino acids, nicotine, and dietary fiber. This help in clearing bad bacteria lodged in the intestines promoting the growth of good bacteria.
  6. Nervous system support: As dates have high potassium content, they have played a vital role in controlling:
    • Heart rate
    • Breathing function
    • Muscular function
  7. Improved metabolism: Dates are rich in B vitamins, such as:
    • Pantothenic acid
    • Folate
    • Niacin
  8. Boosts energy: These vitamins improve metabolic processes, thus reducing tiredness and fatigue.
  9. Aids in weight management: As dates help in lowering blood sugar levels, it is useful in weight management.
  10. Regulates blood pressure: Potassium present in dates is essential to excrete sodium out of the body. Thus, potassium regulates blood pressure by eliminating sodium from the body. Potassium is also needed for the heart to beat properly.
  11. Prevents anemia: Dates are rich in iron which is vital for producing red blood cells. Higher red blood cell productions reduce the risk of anemia and can prevent symptoms associated with anemia, such as fatigue and weakness.
  12. Strengthens bones: Due to the presence of significant amounts of minerals, it helps in strengthening bones and fighting against painful and debilitating diseases, such as osteoporosis. It contains minerals like selenium, manganese, copper, and many more. These minerals contribute to the development of healthy bones.
  13. Lowers cholesterol: Dates are a healthy and delicious way to reduce the levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol or bad cholesterol in the body.
  14. Sexual health: Several studies have shown that dates are useful for increasing sexual stamina by reducing sterility caused by different sexual disorders.
  15. Reduces cancer risk: Several researchers have shown that dates help in reducing the risk and impact of abdominal cancer.
  16. Promotes oral health: Eating dates regularly is also beneficial for protecting and improving the strength of the tooth enamel, and it also helps in reducing the risk of tooth decay because it contains fluoride.
  17. Fights infections: The high amount of sulfur present in dates helps the human body fight against conditions and allergies.
  18. Boosts hair health: Dates contain Vitamin B5 which is vital for the maintenance of your hair. It reduces hair fall, improves brittle hair, and split ends. Daily consumption of 3-4 dates can help reduce hair problems.
QUESTION According to the USDA, there is no difference between a “portion” and a “serving.” See Answer

What are the side effects of eating dates?

5 Potential side effects of consuming dates include:

  • Weight gain: Dates, when consumed in excess, can lead to weight gain due to high caloric content. So, it is essential to consume dates in moderation.
  • Blood sugar: Since dates contain natural sugars, eating them in excess can increase blood sugar levels.
  • Kidney disease: Individuals with kidney disease should follow caution while having dates. Consult a doctor regarding the amount of potassium to be taken every day.
  • Allergies: Dried dates often contain sulfites that may trigger allergies in some. Monitor for these symptoms after having dried dates:
    • Stomach pain
    • Bloating
    • Diarrhea
    • Skin rash
  • Asthma: Sulfites can exaggerate the symptoms of wheezing in people with asthma.

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Medically Reviewed on 1/23/2023

References

WebMD. Medjool Dates: Are There Health Benefits? https://www.webmd.com/diet/medjool-dates-health-benefits#1

Al-Farsi M, Lee CY. Nutritional and Functional Properties of Dates: A Review. Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition. December 2008;48(10):877-87. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/23413061_Nutritional_and_Functional_Properties_of_Dates_A_Review

NutritionValue.org. Dates, Medjool. https://www.nutritionvalue.org/Dates%2C_medjool_nutritional_value.html

Al-Farsi MA, Lee CY. Nutritional and Functional Properties of Dates: A Review. Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. November 2008;48(10):877-87. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18949591/

Nagdeve M. 12 Proven Health Benefits of Dates. Organic Facts. https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/fruit/health-benefits-of-dates.html

Nutrition and You. Dates nutrition facts. https://www.nutrition-and-you.com/dates.html

How Many Dates Should You Eat a Day? 18 Benefits & 6 Side Effects (2024)

FAQs

How many dates is it safe to eat per day? ›

So, if you want to snack on something healthy while also keeping your cholesterol in check, consider adding dates in your diet. Having five to six dates per day is enough for your health. Remember, since it has some amount of sugar added, don't have them in excess as it can lead to high sugar levels and diabetes.

Is there any side effects of eating dates daily? ›

5 Potential side effects of consuming dates include: Weight gain: Dates, when consumed in excess, can lead to weight gain due to high caloric content. So, it is essential to consume dates in moderation. Blood sugar: Since dates contain natural sugars, eating them in excess can increase blood sugar levels.

When should you not eat dates? ›

If you experience stomach pain, bloating, diarrhea, or skin rash after eating dried fruits, you may have an allergy or sensitivity to sulfites and should avoid eating Medjool dates. Sulfites in dried fruits may also worsen symptoms like wheezing for people with asthma.

What happens to your body if you eat 3 dates a day for a week? ›

Your digestive health will improve.

Fiber intake prevents constipation and promotes regular bowel movements. A study published in the British Journal of Nutrition, showed that people who consume dates regularly have a much better working digestive system than those who don't.

What are the healthiest dates to eat? ›

What is the best type of dates? All dates are good for your health, however, some varieties top the chart due to their yummy taste and high nutritional value. Medjool dates are said to be the most healthy by many, however, this will solely be dependant upon your taste for the dates.

What do dates do in a woman's body? ›

Apart from being an excellent substitute for refined sugar, dates can improve the skin, aid in losing weight, reduce belly fat, prevent hair loss, and provide support during pregnancy.

Do dates clean your arteries? ›

Dates, which are rich sources of phenolic radical scavenger antioxidants, also inhibit the oxidation of LDL (the so-called "bad cholesterol") and stimulate the removal of cholesterol from lipid-laden arterial cells. Prof.

What are the symptoms of too many dates? ›

Dates are rich in fiber, and consuming too many can lead to digestive discomfort, including bloating, gas, and diarrhea, especially in individuals not accustomed to a high-fiber diet.

Do dates clean your liver? ›

Dates contain significant amounts of fiber and potassium. The Potassium and other minerals in dates help to cleanse the liver. In addition, dates will help remove heavy metals and toxins from the body. One of the requirements for people with fatty liver is weight loss because Weight loss help to reduce liver fat.

Are dates good for your bowels? ›

Dates provide a laxative effect that can help deal with constipation and other digestive issues. Constipation is a common health issue. This can occur due to various reasons, such as not drinking enough water, not eating enough fruits and vegetables or not being physically active.

How has eating dates changed my life? ›

There's also some evidence that dates may be really great for brain health as well. Laboratory studies have found that dates are helpful for lowering inflammatory markers in the brain, which could help lower the risk of neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer's and could even improve memory and learning.

Can dates increase blood pressure? ›

Beyond polyphenols, dates contain cardiovascular-protective nutrients including potassium, magnesium, folate, selenium, fiber, and vitamin C (Table 2). Most date varieties are rich in potassium and low in sodium, both of which are important dietary factors that help maintain blood pressure in the normal range [83,84].

Is it OK to eat 20 dates a day? ›

You may consume 5-6 dates every day. Since it contains sugar, exceeding that limit may affect blood sugar levels.

How much is too much dates? ›

​The appropriate number of dates to eat in a day can vary depending on various factors, including individual nutritional needs. You can have five to six dates per day at max.

Is 4 dates too much to eat? ›

How many dates should I eat a day? 5 to 6 dates a day are good enough for your health. It has some added sugar, so don't overdo it as it can lead to high sugar levels and diabetes.

Do dates spike blood sugar? ›

Dates are a low GI food, with 2 servings constituting a medium GL. Therefore, they should not cause dramatic blood sugar spikes when people eat them in moderation. A small 2011 study supports this, finding that people with diabetes did not experience significant blood sugar fluctuations after eating about 7–10 dates.

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