There are a lot of various kinds of dates available which not only vary in their taste, size and texture but also in their nutrition values. In Ramadan muslims all over the world break their fast with a date as it was guided by the Prophet (Peace be upon him). In spite of the fact that dates are stacked with a diverse profile of nutrients, carbohydrates and sugars contribute the most which makes them perhaps the best sources of instant energy and nutrition after a long day of fasting.
There are plenty of different types of dates available which not only vary in their taste, size and texture but also in their nutrition values. As carbohydrates and sugar are significant contents of nutrition profile of a date, it is ideal to be able to identity them on sight. One should know that all dates are an extraordinary source of nutrients and thus offer plenty of healthy benefits. Since dates are dried fruit, they are significantly higher in calories compared to other fresh fruit and therefore one should keep in mind that they should be consumed in moderate quantities.
Majority of the calories in dates come from carbohydrates and sugar, they also contain some vital vitamins, minerals and a significant amount of fiber .
Speaking of dietary fibers, dates on an average contain 7g to 9g of dietary fibers per 100g which is almost four times as compared to spinach for the same quantity, and almost five times compared with a similar amount of mangoes.
Dietary Fibers are great for the health of our gut, it helps keep blood sugars in control, promotes smooth bowel movements amongst many other health benefits.
Additional Health Benefits of Dates
The Flavonoids in dates are powerful antioxidants that help reduce inflammation and have been studied for their potential role in reducing the risk of diabetes, alzheimer's disease and certain types of cancer.
Carotenoids in dates have been proven to promote heart health and also reduce the risk of eye-related disorders, such as macular degeneration.
Phenolic acids in dates are known for their anti-inflammatory properties and also help lower the risk of certain types of cancer and heart disease.
Phosphorus, potassium, calcium and magnesium in dates are known for their potential to prevent bone-related conditions like osteoporosis and overall bone health.
Fructose in dates is a natural sugar and makes for a healthier substitute to white sugar in recipes due to the nutrients, fiber and antioxidants present in them.
"Famous Types of Dates"
While there are numerous types of Dates available today these six varieties are popular.
• Ajwa Dates
• Safawi/Kalmi Dates
• Sukkary Dates
• Mabroom Dates
• Sagai Dates
• Khudri Dates
1: Ajwa Dates
Ajwa dates are black in colour and also known as the King of All Dates, these are usually available in different sizes (Price goes up as the size increases ) 12 pcs of small to medium ones are roughly 100g. Ajwa amongst all dates has the highest amount of Iron, almost double compared to any other type of date. It also contains over 700mg of Potassium which is the highest amount of Potassium compared to any other type of dates. It also has a fairly better amount of vitamin D. Overall Ajwa date is best with respect to nutrients, as compared to all dates.
Recommended: better for people with anemia, constipation
Not recommended: for people with polycythemia.
2. Safawi or Kalmi Dates
Safawi dates are one of the most commonly consumed and easily available varieties. They are dark brown in colour and approx size of a thumb.100g of these dates are roughly around 7pcs and gives you almost 400 calories of which almost 93 percent are carbs. This makes them calorie rich with maximum carbohydrate content thus:
Recommended: for people seeking weight gain.
Not recommended: for obese, diabetic patients and those looking to keep a check on their calories
3. Sukkary Dates
Sukkary dates are one of the most commonly consumed dates in Saudi Arabia, lowest in calories, only 329 Kcal per 100g which is wight pieces, as compared to other dates. It is the highest source of Fibre ( 9g/100g). Highest in calcium compared to other dates. After Ajwa it has the 2nd highest amount of potassium.
Recommended: for people with constipation, calcium deficiency, osteoarthritis.
Not recommended: for people with kidney issues & hypercalcinemia.
4. Mabroom Dates
Mabroom dates are lower in Calories 9g of Dietary Fiber which makes them richest source of fibre and contains a good amount of calcium. A 100 gems is 7 pieces of mbar dates.
Recommended: for people with constipation, calcium deficiency, osteoarthritis
Not recommended: for people with Hypercalcinemia
5. Sagai Dates
It has a unique dual shade with a beige colour crown on the top of the date. It has a good amount of calcium and potassium.
Recommended: for people with calcium deficiency or arthritis patients.
Not recommended: for people with hypercalcemia.
6. Khudri Dates
Khudri dates are low in calorie and sodium, 100 gems is seven pieces.
Recommended: for people seeking weight loss ( amount ï¿½ as prescribed by your dietician )
Not recommended: for people seeking weight gain
"Good Tip for Diabetics"
With respect to diabetics, Eating Ajwa as they are small so accounts for fewer calories and sugar or Mabroom as they are amongst the highest dietary fibre and lowest in carbs.
Removing the seeds of the Dates and filling the date with Cinnamon Powder further increases the Dietary Fibre which helps in better control of Blood Sugars compared to eating a date by itself.
If not cinnamon Powder, added an Almond or a Walnut also will relatively have better blood sugar control compared to eating a date by itself.
For General population it's ideal to attempt and add all the varieties of dates on rotation to reap maximum benefits that each type of date has to bring to the table.