Thursday, October 30, 2014

KHAJOOR Date Palm खजूर

KHAJOOR, Date Palm, खजूर (Phoenix Dactylifera): Health Benefits and Nutritional Values

Phoenix dactylifera commonly known as the date palm is one of the oldest trees cultivated by man and is the most nutritious fruits on the globe. Dates are one of the most popular fruits packed with an impressive list of essential nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that are required for normal growth, development and overall well-being. A variety of date palm is known as Ajwah is the most medicinal date fruit in all the date palm varieties. Dates are fat free, cholesterol free and sodium free. Dates have the largest concentration of polyphenols among dried fruits.
Dates have a lot of medicinal uses throughout history in treating cold, fever, cystitis, edema, shore throat, bronchial catarrh, liver cancer, low sperm count and abdominal trouble, respiratory illnesses, gastrointestinal disturbances, and the improvement of fertility in both males and females etc. Fruit and seed are rich with antioxidant properties and other nutrients. It exhibits various useful properties to the humankind in the form of antioxidant, antifungal, antifungal, antihyperlidimic activity and hepatoprotective activity. It is also proven that the date palm benefits the brain through neuroprotective property, protecting the brain from the actions of Reactive oxygen species (ROS; chemically reactive molecules containing oxygen. Examples include oxygen ions and peroxides) by utilizing its antioxidant property. This protects the brain cells physically.
Its high content of magnesium makes its consumers to the lowest risk of cancer diseases (especially abdominal cancer due to the presence of natural fiber and the large concentration of polyphenols.). The fiber found in date palm works as a bulk laxative thus it helps to protect the colon mucous membrane from cancer-causing chemicals binding to it in the colon. Date are moderate sources of vitamin-A i.e. also required maintaining healthy mucus membranes and skin. Consumption of natural fruits rich in vitamin A is known to help protect from lung and oral cavity cancers. Dates compose antioxidant flavonoids such as ß-carotene, lutein, and zea-xanthin which have the ability to protect cells and other structures in the body from harmful effects of oxygen-free radicals. Thus, dates offer some protection from colon, prostate, breast, endometrial, lung, and pancreatic cancers.
Date palm possesses natural anti-inflammatory properties and may be used to treat conditions such as lupus or arthritis. Respiratory illnesses have been traditionally treated with date palm. Asthma, bronchitis, and tuberculosis are specific illnesses that may be treated with this herb. The date palm can be used as an expectorant to make coughs more productive and may also help to sooth a sore throat and reduce fever.
A variety of gastrointestinal disturbances may be successfully treated using date palm. The date palm may be used as a laxative or taken to induce vomiting. Regular use of this herb may also help to treat inflammatory bowel disease. Those who have been diagnosed with inflammatory conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis or lupus may benefit from the anti-inflammatory properties of date palm. Date palm is used to cleanse and detoxify the liver and may protect the cells of the body from premature death.

Date palm has been used as an aphrodisiac and to increase fertility. This fruit has mild estrogen-like effects, increasing the chances of fertility in women. Males may develop an increased sperm count as well as improved motility.
Date palm provides benefit that is crucial to the brain, called the neuroprotective or cerebroprotective effect i.e. it protects the brain from the destructive activity of the reactive oxygen species that could come from the cell metabolism itself or from exogenous sources as date palm is an excellent antioxidant agent and this is due to the high concentrations of phenolic compounds, flavonoids (carotenoid, phenolic & β-carotenoids) and anthocyanins as well as the presence of selenoproteins, essential fatty acids, glutathione and glutathione reductase and phytochemicals. Date palm could serve as a potential therapeutic agent for treating brain ischemia and other neurodegenerative diseases.
Iron, being a component of hemoglobin inside the red blood cells, determines Consuming dates can increase the oxygen-carrying capacity of the blood as it is rich source of Iron that is helpful for maintaining haemoglobin level in blood.
Date fruits are also rich in minerals like calcium, manganese, copper, and magnesium. Calcium is an important mineral that is an essential constituent of bone and teeth, and required by the body for muscle contraction, blood clotting, and nerve impulse conduction. Manganese is used by the body as a co-factor for the antioxidant enzyme, superoxide dismutase. Copper is required for the production of red blood cells. Magnesium is essential for bone growth.
Further, the fruit has moderate levels of B-complex group of vitamins as well as vitamin K. It contains very good amounts of pyridoxine (vitamin B-6), niacin, pantothenic acid, and riboflavin. These vitamins are acting as cofactors help body metabolize carbohydrates, protein, and fats. Vitamin K is essential for many coagulant factors in the blood as well as in bone metabolism.
To get rid of alcohol intoxication soak dates in water and drink this water in which dates have been previously soaked for few hours.

Dates work as an aphrodisiac. Soak dates in goat milk at night. Next morning blend them together in the milk adding a table spoon honey and a pinch of cardamom powder and drink.

Date palm is beneficial in breaking kidney stone as well as relieving one of backache as well.
Date palm is very useful for eye health for whole life and also prevents night blindness. Date offers protection against age-related macular degeneration, especially in elderly populations as a dietary carotenoid “Zea Xanthin” found in dates provide antioxidant and protective light-filtering functions.
Dates can benefit those with diabetes when taken along with a healthy and balanced diet. Dates contain sugar more in the form of fructose more than glucose. Glucose raises blood sugar levels rapidly and needs insulin for it to be metabolized. Fructose is easily broken down and gets metabolized directly by the liver without need of insulin and so does not raise blood sugar levels. The soluble fiber beta glucan in dates also reduces absorption of glucose from the intestine resulting in lower blood sugar levels. In old people who have frequent urges of urinating eating 2 dates daily or 1 date at night with milk will benefit by reducing this frequency.
Dates strengthen the heart. Dates are high in potassium and also almost nil in sodium that keeps the heart muscles in good shape as well as reduces blood pressure. The fruit is rich in dietary fiber, which prevents LDL cholesterol absorption in the gut. Being rich in Potassium dates help to regulate heart rate and blood pressure. They, thus, offers protection against stroke and coronary heart diseases. Dates have a special fiber, Beta D glucan, that prevents absorption of cholesterol from the intestine and thus lowers cholesterol levels.
Dates can be used to prevent obesity. Dates contain a lot of nutrients. Eating a few dates provides enough energy and stops hunger pangs while its fiber keeps the stomach full longer, thus it effectively reduce food consumption and consequent weight gain. And in contrast to increase weight and strength consume dates blend with milk in morning.
Dates are useful for pregnant women as well as they strengthen the uterine walls. They aid in easy delivery and reduce bleeding too. Dates alleviate depression and also enrich breast milk. Therefore they should on the list of healthy foods for lactating mothers.
Dates given to children at night to eat for some days will stop their habit of bed wetting. A paste made of honey and dates is useful in controlling diarrhea and dysentery in children.
Seeds are used in a paste to relieve ague. Its gum (exudes from wounds) is used for the treatment of diarrhoea, it can counteract alcoholic intoxication, and its roots are used against tooth ache and pollen supply estrogens. For headache relied, grind 1 date seed with water and apply it on the forehead for relief. The seeds of dates cure styes. Grind the seed of 1 date with water and apply on the affected.

 Complete Nutritional Profile:

Dates (Phoenix Dactylifera)

Carbohydrate Factor: 3.6 Fat Factor: 8.37 Protein Factor: 3.36 Nitrogen to Protein Conversion Factor: 6.25


Refuse: 10% Refuse Description: Pits
Type


Approximates
Deglet Noor
Medjool

Nutrient
Unit
1Value per100g
1Value per100g

Water
g
20.53
21.32

Energy
kcal
282
277

Protein
g
2.45
1.81

Total lipid (fat)
g
0.39
0.15

Ash
g
1.6
1.74

Carbohydrate, by difference
g
75.03
74.97

Fiber, total dietary
g
8
6.7

Sugars, total
g
63.35
66.47

Sucrose
g
23.84
0.53

Glucose (dextrose)
g
19.87
33.68

Fructose
g
19.56
31.95

Maltose
g
0.12
0.3

Galactose
g
0
0

Minerals

Calcium
mg
39
64

Iron
mg
1.02
0.9

Magnesium
mg
43
54

Phosphorus
mg
62
62

Potassium
mg
656
696

Sodium
mg
2
1

Zinc
mg
0.29
0.44

Copper
mg
0.206
0.362

Manganese
mg
0.262
0.296

Selenium
µg
3


Vitamins

Vitamin C, total ascorbic acid
mg
0.4
0

Thiamin
mg
0.052
0.05

Riboflavin
mg
0.066
0.06

Niacin
mg
1.274
1.61

Pantothenic acid
mg
0.589
0.805

Vitamin B-6
mg
0.165
0.249

Folate, total
µg
19
15

Folic acid
µg
0
0

Folate, food
µg
19
15

Folate, DFE
µg
19
15

Choline, total
mg
6.3
9.9

Betaine
mg
0.4
0.4

Vitamin B-12
µg
0


Vitamin B-12, added
µg
0


Vitamin A, RAE
µg
0
7

Retinol
µg
0


Carotene, beta
µg
6
89

Carotene, alpha
µg
0
0

Cryptoxanthin, beta
µg
0
0

Vitamin A, IU
IU
10
149

Lycopene
µg
0
0

Lutein + zeaxanthin
µg
75
23

Vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol)
mg
0.05


Vitamin E, added
mg
0


Tocopherol, beta
mg
0


Tocopherol, gamma
mg
0.05


Tocopherol, delta
mg
0


Vitamin D (D2 + D3)
µg
0
0

Vitamin D
IU
0
0

Vitamin K (phylloquinone)
µg
2.7
2.7

Lipids

Fatty acids, total saturated
g
0.032


Fatty acids, total monounsaturated
g
0.036


Fatty acids, total polyunsaturated
g
0.019


Amino Acids

Tryptophan
g
0.012
0.007

Threonine
g
0.043
0.042

Isoleucine
g
0.049
0.045

Leucine
g
0.084
0.082

Lysine
g
0.066
0.054

Methionine
g
0.022
0.017

Cystine
g
0.067
0.046

Phenylalanine
g
0.05
0.048

Tyrosine
g
0.015
0.016

Valine
g
0.071
0.066

Arginine
g
0.136
0.06

Histidine
g
0.032
0.029

Alanine
g
0.083
0.078

Aspartic acid
g
0.213
0.22

Glutamic acid
g
0.359
0.265

Glycine
g
0.101
0.09

Proline
g
0.13
0.111

Serine
g
0.057
0.062

Flavonoids

Flavonols
mg
0.9


Proanthocyanidin
mg
10.7



Most people are able to use date palm without experiencing negative side effects, although allergic reactions are possible. A mild reaction may involve itching, sneezing, or the development of a rash. A severe and potentially fatal type of reaction known as anaphylaxis can cause chest pain, facial swelling, and difficulty breathing. If any of these symptoms develop, emergency medical attention is required to save the life of the patient.