Dates are an important component of the holy month of Ramadan and are an essential during ‘Iftar’ (the meal at sunset to break the fast).
The association of dates with Ramadan is important from both a religious and a health point of view.
During this entire month, Muslims refrain from eating and drinking from dawn to dusk.
This fast is observed for spiritual growth, to increase empathy for the less fortunate, to celebrate the divinity of the Almighty, and to cleanse impurities of both the body and mind.
It is recommended to start Iftar by eating 2-3 dates, as it provides the body with sugar, helping restore low blood sugar after fasting all day.
You can also read, Muslims to enjoy waved duty on dates during Ramadhan.
During the holy month of Ramadan, Prophet Mohammed (PBUH) used to break his fast with fresh dates. If these were not available, he made do with a glass of pure water before he preformed Maghrib (the evening prayers).
Dates make a healthy body and a healthy, happy mind.
One of the most common reasons for headaches or dizziness during Ramadan is low blood sugar, which is why eating dates is very beneficial at the start of Iftar.
There is a common saying by health practitioners ‘an apple a day keeps the doctor away’.
In the Arab world, this can be adapted to ‘seven dates a day keeps the doctor away.’
The holy Prophet (PBUH) used the number 7, which has a religious significance in Islam. Interestingly, 7 dates weigh approximately 100 grams, and by modern-day standards, this is the perfect serving size to replenish the body with the required amount of daily vitamins and minerals.
100 grams of dates has a sufficient amount of nutrition to eliminate accumulated toxins in the body (referred to as ‘poison’ in the hadith).
Another interesting finding shows that a handful of dates is the perfect cure for hangovers!
The Prophet (PBUH) was also quoted saying that a house that has dates will never go hungry.
Given the humble date is very dense in essential nutrients; a small serving can satiate hunger very easily.
This makes dates the perfect food for dieters! With only 23 calories per date and having the ability to curb hunger pangs, dates can help with the battle of the bulge.
Dates have been prized for their health-enhancing benefits for centuries.
Ancient Egyptians, Greek physicians and Islamic scholars used dates in folk medicine to cure a plethora of ailments ranging from digestive disorders, bronchial problems, blood pressure regulation, liver ailments, tumors and fertility issues.
A regular intake of dates helps eliminate bodily toxins thus cleansing the body and are high in fibre, and therefore widely used for eliminating the symptoms of constipation.
Dates are easily digested, and are therefore the perfect food source for young, growing children.
Dates have long been consumed during childbirth. Their high sugar content makes them the ideal natural stamina booster.
Dates also have the ability to stimulate the uterus to give regulated contractions needed to facilitate birth.
The high fibre content gives dates a laxative effect which purges the colon and intestine to aid delivery.