The Health Benefits of Dates or Chhuhara

Updated on July 2, 2020
rajan jolly profile image

Rajan is a botany and chemistry major. He has worked as a poultry breeder for 23 years, breeding layer and broiler parents.


The Latin name for Date is Phoenix dactylifera. In India, fresh dates are called Khajoor while dried dates are called Chhuhara. They are known as the "bread of the desert."

The exact origin of the date palm is not clear. However, they have been cultivated in Egypt, Iran, and Pakistan since 4000 BC and in India and South Asia since 2000 BC. They probably originated around Iraq but have been grown all over in the Middle East for thousands of years. Around 1765 AD, they were introduced into Mexico and California in the United States.

Dates are the fruits of the date palm. They are oval-shaped with colours ranging from red to golden to bright yellow. They contain a single seed.

There are three main cultivars or groups of dates :

  • Soft - for eg, Barhee, Halawy etc.
  • Semi-dry - for eg, Dayri, Zahdi etc.
  • Dry - for eg, Thoory etc.

Dates ripen in four stages: viz Kimri (unripe), Khlal (ripe, crunchy), Rutab (ripe, soft), and Tamar 9ripe, sundried). The date palm begins to bear fruit four to eight years after planting and produces fruit for 7 to 10 years. Each date palm produces between 80 to 120 kgs of dates per harvest. There are over 600 varieties of dates. The date palm grows in warm climates all over the world now.

Dates are available fresh where the outer skin is sticky and waxy or they can also be sold dried. Sometimes they are deseeded before being sold. Muslims have been enjoined by their holy book - The Quran, to break the Ramzan fast with dates as it is purifying according to prophet Muhammed.

Nutritional Value of Dates

  • Dates are easily digestible.
  • Since they contain simple sugars, they provide instant energy.
  • They are rich in dietary fibre and tannins.
  • They contain antioxidants beta carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin.
  • They are an excellent source of sulphur, phosphorus, iron, potassium, calcium, manganese, copper, and magnesium.

They have decent amounts of B complex vitamins and Vitamin K.

Different cultivars of the Date Palm, Phoenix dactylifers

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Date Palm loaded with datesanother cultivar of date palm
Date Palm loaded with dates
Date Palm loaded with dates | Source
another cultivar of date palm
another cultivar of date palm | Source

Health Benefits of Dates

• Laxative properties due to fiber content.
Eat three dates and drink hot water morning and night. If dates are hard, boil in milk.
• Controls Type 2 Diabetes
Fructose, not glucose, in dates is easily broken down and metabolized without insulin.
• Strengthens the heart
Soak dates overnight in water two or three times a week. In the morning, blend and eat.
• Reduces risk of abdominal cancer
High fiber content and polyphenols.
• Manages cholesterol
Special fiber called Beta D glucan stops cholesterol absorption
• Prevents obesity
Nutrient-packed, dates prevents hunger between meals.

More Benefits

  • Two-thirds of the dates' weight is natural sugar. A single date has 23 calories and 5 to 6 dates equal to one serving of fruit. Dates are fat-free, cholesterol- and sodium-free.
  • The American Cancer Society recommends eating 20 to 35 grams of fibre daily. Research suggests that dates supply fibre, as they are dense in nutrients and polyphenols as well.

Folk Remedy Uses

  • It is believed that consuming one date every day maintains eye health for life and also prevents night-blindness.
  • Dates can help reduce alcohol intoxication. Just drink water in which dates have been soaking for a few hours.
  • Dates work as an aphrodisiac. Soak 8 to 10 dates in goat milk at night. Next morning blend them together in the milk. Add a tsp honey and a pinch of cardamom powder and drink.
  • Dates are believed to alleviate depression and also to enrich breast milk.
  • Dates are useful for pregnant women as well as they may strengthen the uterine walls. They aid in easy delivery and reduce bleeding, too.
  • A paste made of honey and dates is useful in controlling diarrhoea and dysentery in children.
  • Dates counter body weakness. Eating seven dates will provide about 70 mg calcium, 35 mg phosphorus and 7 mg iron.
  • Two dates given to children at night will prevent bed-wetting.
  • In old people who have frequent urges of urinating, eating two dates daily or one date at night with milk will reduce this frequency.
  • For a voice that has gone hoarse, eat one date that has been boiled in milk and then drink the milk. Do this at bedtime. Ensure that you do not drink water for two hours after this. It makes the voice clear.
  • Dates are useful in relieving respiratory distress. As they are hot in nature they bring out phlegm and are beneficial to the chest and lungs. Boil two to three dates in milk until they are soft. Eat the dates and drink the milk.
  • Dates and milk help to increase weight. Soak two dates in milk. blend when soft. Drink this milk to increase weight and strength.
  • The seeds of dates cure styes. Grind the seed of one date with water and apply on the affected spot two to three times daily.
  • For headache relief, grind one date seed with water and apply it on the forehead for relief.
  • Taking two dates every day is beneficial in breaking kidney stone as well as relieving one of backache as well.

Uses of the Date Plant and Fruit

The entire date tree is very useful. All its parts are used in some form or the other.

The date palm is tapped for palm wine, jaggery and palm syrup. The young leaves are cooked as a vegetable. The flowers are also edible. Finely ground seeds are used to make bread by mixing it with flour.

Date seeds are also used as animal feed. The leaves find use in making huts, mats, baskets, fans etc. Date seed oil is used in soaps and cosmetics. The leaf sheaths are used for making ropes, rough cloth, hats etc. The fruit stalk is used as fuel.

Dates may be consumed as they are or stuffed with almonds, walnuts, cream cheese, and lemon peel. They can also be chopped and added to a variety of dishes. Date nut bread is a popular type of cake. Dates are also processed into spreads, syrups, paste, cubes, powder, vinegar, chutneys etc.

The recipe for date and walnut cake and tamarind dates chutney can be checked out in the recipe videos included in the article.

Date and Walnut Cake

Nutrition Facts About Dates per 100 Grams

(click column header to sort results)
Nutrient Value  
Percent of USRDA  
277 Kcal
74.97 g
Total Fat
0.15 g
0 mg
Dietary Fiber
6.7 g
15 micro gm
1.610 mg
Pantothenic acid
0.805 mg
0.249 mg
0.060 mg
0.050 mg
Vitamin A
149 IU
Vitamin C
0 mg
Vitamin K
2.7 micro gm
1 mg
696 mg
64 mg
0.362 mg
0.90 mg
54 mg
0.296 mg
62 mg
0.44 mg
Beta Carotene
89 micro gm
Beta Crypto-xanthin
0 micro gm
23 micro gm
(Source: USDA National Nutrient data base)
Sap being procured from date palm.
Sap being procured from date palm. | Source


The information provided here is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult your physician or health care provider before taking any home remedies or supplements or starting a new health regime.

Khajur Imli Chutney (Dates and Tamarind Chutney)

Warm Stuffed Dates Recipe

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.

© 2012 Rajan Singh Jolly


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    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      2 months ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      Welcome Saurav

    • profile image

      Saurav Bhagat 

      2 months ago

      Thank you for the informative blog post.

    • profile image


      20 months ago

      what is difference in between chuharey and dates with benefits comparison.

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      20 months ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      You are welcome Disha.

    • profile image


      20 months ago

      Thanks for sharing this great information thanku soo much

    • profile image


      2 years ago

      Thanks for sharing this great information.

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      2 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      Glad you found the information useful jagwinderpal singh.

    • profile image

      jagwinderpal singh ludhiana 

      2 years ago

      Thanks for all the benifits of dates you told us about. I will be using it in my daily diet

    • profile image

      Munavvar Hussain 

      5 years ago

      Dates are wonderful for health. Its useful in many disease go for dates everyday..

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 

      5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      I love dates but they're just too sweet. I love the stuffed ones especially when the stuffing balances sweetness well.

    • Rota profile image


      5 years ago

      Dates are a staple for me. I eat 20 or 30 a day in smoothies or on their own. Great sweet snack.

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      7 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      GTF, thanks and I'll check out your hub now. Take care!

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

      Claudia Mitchell 

      7 years ago

      Hi rajan - just wanted to let you know my hub has been posted with links to this one and many of your other fruit ones. Have a great day.

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      7 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      Thanks Sophie!

    • SINewsome profile image

      Sophie Newsome 

      7 years ago from New York

      I never knew dates had so many benefits. Great hub!

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      7 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      I'm sure you can use dates more frequently for better vision. Appreciate the read, votes, the 5 stars and share. Thanks.

    • Au fait profile image

      C E Clark 

      7 years ago from North Texas

      I had no idea dates were good for healthy eyes and improving night vision, for treating diarrhea and constipation, and especially interesting is that they stop bed wetting in children and alleviate depression, and on and on it goes! Dates are simply amazing. I'm going to see if they help my night vision. I've always had bad night vision even in my 20s.

      Excellent hub and information. Voted AUI, gave you 5 stars, and will share!

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      7 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      Thanks Sasha. It's always a pleasure to see you.

    • Mama Kim 8 profile image

      Sasha Kim 

      7 years ago

      I just LOVE dates ^_^ Thank you for all the fantastic information Rajan! Wonderful hub... voting a whole bunch ^_^

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      7 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      @ vespawoolf - dates do taste different dried from fresh. I'm glad you appreciate all the goodness in dates. Wish they were more easily available in Peru but maybe the dried variety could be more readily available! Thanks for visiting.

      @ Marlene - glad you like the information. Thanks for stopping by.

      @ GTF - Nice to know you are fond of dates. appreciate your visit.

      @ Sueswan - dates are as nutritious dried as fresh. Maybe you could give the dried ones a try if you do not like the fresh stuff. Thanks for visiting, voting and sharing.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Hi Rajan

      I love date squares but a long time ago I tried raw dates and didn't like them. After reading all their health benefits, I think I will give them a try again.

      Voted up and awesome and sharing.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

      Claudia Mitchell 

      7 years ago

      Dates are the best thing! There is not much better than a fresh date. I had no idea the leaves could be used to make so many things. Thanks for providing some recipes.

    • MarleneB profile image

      Marlene Bertrand 

      7 years ago from USA

      The only reason I ever ate dates was to help cure constipation. Wow! I didn't know dates were so versatile with so much value. I think I'll start eating more dates.

    • vespawoolf profile image

      Vespa Woolf 

      7 years ago from Peru, South America

      Wow, dates really are a super food! I'm surprised they help with urinary incontinence and that diabetics can assimilate them. I think they make a great natural sweetener and wish we had easier access to them in Peru. It's interesting that in Indian the word used for fresh dates is different than that used for the dried. They are like a different fruit!

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      7 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      @ shining - thanks for the compliments and enjoy dates! Happy holidays!

      @ sweetie - I remember drinking neera too; you know it was sold at the railway stations some years back.

      @ Patricia - Glad you found this informative and thanks for dropping by.

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 

      7 years ago from North Central Florida

      I love dates in many ways. Eating them just as a date is grand. I had no idea there were so many other date parts that could be eaten. And I certainly did not know of all of the healthful properties. Thank you for sharing.

    • sweetie1 profile image


      7 years ago from India

      HI Rajan,

      We used to go to Mount Abu when we were kids and there on the banks of Lake there , there were countless trees of dates. We would just throw stones and get the dates. Also I like to drink Neera, the dates water.

    • shiningirisheyes profile image

      Shining Irish Eyes 

      7 years ago from Upstate, New York

      Rajan - I so enjoy knowing when you explain the benefits of a food item I absolutely love. Dates are one of my favorites and I use them when back Holiday treats.

      They are a great alternative to an unhealthy sweet treat as well.

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      7 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      @ Rasma - Thanks for the visit and sharing.

      @ Mike -Glad you now use dates regularly and thanks for finding it useful enough to bookmark and share. Appreciate the thoughtfulness, bro. You have a great day and happy holidays.

    • CloudExplorer profile image

      Mike Pugh 

      7 years ago from New York City

      I love eating dates, and had no clue of all the health benefits to them all, as my wife introduced me to eating them, and they are so sweet tasting and yummy too. We use dates in recipes for juicing as a natural sweetener and with nuts as well to make vegan bars.

      So yup dates are good to us indeed, thanks Rajan for this useful hub here, I will also share as well as bookmark it for research purposes if need be in the future.

      Thumbs up and out bro happy holidays.

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 

      7 years ago from Daytona Beach, Florida

      Voted up and interesting. Thank for this informative hub on dates. I love them but don't eat them as much as I should. Passing this on.

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      7 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      @ Devika - thanks and I do hope you start consuming this healthy food more often. Glad to see you.

      @ Peggy - I'll be checking this hub of yours, Peggy. Nice to know you use dates frequently. Thanks for reading and sharing the hub.

      @ Kris - I agree tastes do change as we grow up and maybe this time with the added info you will find dates more agreeable. Always a pleasure to see you and thanks for dropping by.

    • Kris Heeter profile image

      Kris Heeter 

      7 years ago from Indiana

      I've been thinking I should try dates again. I had them once or twice as a child and did not like them but my tastes have changed and as you've shown, there are so many options now for incorporating dates in recipes. Thanks for a great article!

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 

      7 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Rajan,

      This gets another 5 stars from me. I knew of some of the health benefits but certainly not all of them that you listed. We eat quite a bit of dried fruit but have generally used dates when baking. My date nut bar recipe looks a lot like the photo in that first video. It is an old family favorite recipe and I have even written a hub about it. The stuffed dates look good. Will have to consider using more dates in our diet. Up votes and sharing.

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 

      7 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      It makes me think it has been a while since I have had dates you have presented a helpful Hub to many people thanks

    • rajan jolly profile imageAUTHOR

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      7 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      @ Carol - We all have our favorite foods and the ones we do not relish but there are enough options to go around. I wish a date with dates may turn things around. Lol! Thanks for reading and sharing though.

      @ Sandra - thanks for giving the hub a read and sharing it.

      @ Aurelio - Well, a date with dates is not a bad idea after all. It sure will be healthy for the body. appreciate the comments, vote and visit.

      @ Bill - Hi, its always a pleasure to have your comments my friend. There are enough of good healthy foods to partake so this one can be overlooked. You too have a nice day and a great weekend as well.

      @ Dana - 1 0r 2 dates a day are all that is required to get all its benefits. So glad you do so. Thanks for visiting and commenting.

      @ tlmsgaa - Thanks for stopping by and sharing it.

      @ Louisa - thanks for visiting.

    • Louisa Rogers profile image

      Louisa Rogers 

      7 years ago from Eureka, California and Guanajuato, Mexico

      I'm convinced! I'll eat more of them, along with figs, another favorite fruit. Thanks!

    • tlmcgaa70 profile image


      7 years ago from south dakota, usa

      wow...i have always loved dates but never knew all this about them...thank you for writing about them. voted up and more and definitely sharing

    • DanaTeresa profile image

      Dana Strang 

      7 years ago from Ohio

      WOW! I love dates. I usually eat one or two instead of having candy or other sweets. I also am an a high fiber diet and they fit in perfectly.... I am so glad to know about all these other health benefits. It is also exciting ot see the many ways to enjoy dates. I never thought of cooking them or stuffing them. WHAT A GREAT ARTICLE!

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      7 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Rajan my friend, I can't even look at a date without getting sick to my stomach. I'm sorry, but I may not be able to follow your suggestions this time. Great information, and your research is detailed as always, but my stomach just won't put up with this one. :) Great job, Rajan, and enjoy your weekend.

    • alocsin profile image

      Aurelio Locsin 

      7 years ago from Orange County, CA

      And I thought you were going to talk about the health benefits of dating! Just kidding, Rajan. Excellent hub as usual and I do enjoy the candied dates, although presumably turning them into a sweet probably removes many of the benefits you mention. I'm going to try the constipation aid that you suggested. Voting this Up and Useful.

    • sandrabusby profile image

      Sandra Busby 

      7 years ago from Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA

      Another one of my favorites. Voted up and shared.

    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 

      7 years ago from Arizona

      I never knew there were so many nutrients in dates. It has never been one of my favorites, however so many healthful ingredients..Does going on a date work the same? HAHA. Anyway a great job as always so I feel I must share and vote UP.


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