Date seed uses and benefits
Date seeds, which constitute 6-15% of the total weight of the ripe date are actually a byproduct of date fruit and are largely produced in the Middle East and especially in IRAN.
Date seeds are composed of carbohydrates, dietary fiber, fat, ash and protein. In addition, the antioxidant content in date seed oil (DSO) was found to be similar with olive oil, which can be as a good source of antioxidant in order to fulfill the consumer’s requirements.
Date seeds are the by-product of date stoning, either for the production of pitted dates or for the manufacture of date paste. The date seed is a hard coated seed, usually oblong, ventrally grooved, with a small embryo. Date pits weigh 0.5 g to 4 g and represent 6 to 20% of the fruit weight depending on maturity, variety and grade.
Health benefits of Date seeds
Date seeds or a pit have several amazing medicinal properties.
It helps to prevent kidney and liver against toxicity or damage, useful in diabetes, rich in antioxidants, prevents DNA damage, and helps to fight various viral infections.
Listed below are a few of the health benefits of using Date seeds
1. Prevent DNA damage
According to a study, date seeds have shown a defensive effect against chemically-induced liver damage and oxidative DNA damage.
Date seeds provide protection against liver intoxication, and this hepatoprotective effect might be attributed to the antioxidant and free radical scavenging activities.
2. Useful in treating blood sugar problems
3. Antiviral Agents
Date seed act as antiviral agents against various pathogenic human viruses.
It can be useful in the treatment and prevention of many types of viral infections.
Research has shown that date pit extracts show a strong ability to prevent the infectivity of Pseudomonas phage ATCC 14209-B1 and completely prevented bacterial lysis.
4. Prevent kidney and liver damage
Date seeds are rich in proanthocyanidins that actually help to protect the liver and kidney from damage.
A study states that proanthocyanidins-rich date seed extract protects against chemically induced kidney and liver toxicity.
Date seeds are rich in antioxidants and have antioxidants and free radical scavenging capabilities.
It helps to protect the body against oxidative stress damage.
In recent research, the antioxidant potential of date seed protein hydrolysates could be used as a potential functional food ingredient for health promotion.
Another research found that Iranian date seeds are strong radical scavengers and can be considered as a good source of natural antioxidants for medicinal and commercial uses.
Health benefits of Date seed oil
Date seed oil is obtained from date seed through the Soxhlet extraction technique.
Date seed oil is mainly composed of the four fatty acids namely oleic, linoleic, lauric, and palmitic acid. Listed below are some of the well-known health benefits of using date seed oil
1. Skin Benefits
The use of date seed oil on the skin has approved the protective effects against the damage due to the exposure to UV-B irradiation when it was compared with skin that was applied with the date seed oil.
Similarly, the study found that the date seed oil could repair the human skin which could be due to the antioxidant activity.
The presence of natural antioxidants such as phenols and tocopherols in date seed oil was capable to prevent keratinocytes oxidative damage caused by the exposure of hydrogen peroxide on the skin.
In addition, they also found that date seed oil could protect the skin from the oxidative stress damage caused by hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) through the lipid peroxidation process that is better than olive oil
2. Creates a Healthy Scalp Environment
The ideal environment is needed for healthy hair to thrive. And we don’t have to look far.
The scalp is where the hair gets its nutrition, so it should always be in top condition to support proper hair growth.
Date oil consists of generous amounts of Omega-6 fatty acids, which are polyunsaturated fats that provide nourishment to the scalp.
Apart from that, date oil is also rich in lauric acid, a saturated fatty acid that contains antimicrobial and antibacterial properties.
This helps create an optimal environment for hair growth by removing dandruff and acne.
3. Thickens Hair
Thinning hair is a normal part of aging. Hair loss is caused by many factors.
But here’s the basic idea: When our cells do not generate enough energy, all our organs – including our hair follicles – will start to age.
As a result, hair growth will slow down and shedding will soon begin. When this happens, you will need vitamin B2 and amino acids to prevent it from getting worse.
Date oil has high amino acid and riboflavin (vitamin B2) content that can effectively curb hair loss.
The amino acid is essential in producing keratin, the protein responsible for strengthening the follicles and increasing hair elasticity.
Riboflavin, on the other hand, plays a major role in energy production and restoring cellular function and development.
4. Fights Free Radicals
Dates are rich in bioactive non-nutrient called phytochemicals that function as antioxidants.
In fact, dates have been reported to be the second-highest antioxidant fruit consumed in China.
Date oil consists of many classes of bioactive components, and one of them is carotenoids.
It is a well-known antioxidant that helps strengthen the hair by protecting it from free radicals.
5. Moisturizes Hair
Apart from preventing dandruff and scalp acne, date oil is also widely used for its moisturizing benefits.
The Omega-6 and Omega-9 fatty acids contained in the oil help control water loss so the hair’s moisture is kept intact and the cuticles sealed.
To revive dry, brittle hair, we recommend using hair care products made with date oil.
6. Prevents Premature Greying
Dates are high in many vitamins that help protect against pigment loss.
Two of which are Copper and pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), which help stimulate pigment production.
Hair color is determined by the amount of melanin in the strands.
As we age, our body produces lesser melanin, turning our hair grey.
While we cannot reverse aging, we can encourage our body to produce enough melanin by eating food and using products that are naturally rich in Copper and pantothenic acid, such as Date seed oil.
How to make date seeds powder at home for various health benefits?
Wash the date seeds and let them dry completely.
It may take up to 3 days to dry, depending on where you live. Once it is dried completely, grind the date seeds and use them in the manner of coffee beans.
How to use date seed?
- Some people use date seeds as an additive to coffee.
- Add date syrup in to the warm water with lemon and drink as a tea or infused water.
- Try to make healthy bread spread. Just blend date syrup with honey or Jaggery. Use this instead of jam.
- Add date powder into your smoothies or juices.
- Add date palm seed powder into your baking dishes like cookies, cakes etc.
- Add date syrup while making the salad dressing for extra health benefits.
Date seed is a byproduct of date fruit industry.
Various studies that have been conducted on date seed found that it can be an excellent source of dietary fiber.
In addition, the other component such as protein and minerals also present in considerable amount in the seed.
Based on the fatty acid composition of date seed oil, it is suggested the use of this oil for nutritional purpose, as an edible cooking oil and also for the production of margarine due to the high stability and resistance of date seed oil to thermal treatment which indicates the good shelf life and storability of this oil even for a long period of time.
|Scientific Name||Phoenix dactylifera|
|Native||The Middle East and especially in the United Arab Emirates|
|Common Names||Date seeds, dates pits, date kernels, date stones, date pips|
|Seed Shape & Size||Length from 1.2 to 3.6 cm, and the width from 0.6 to1.3 cm oblong, ventrally grooved, with a small embryo, and with a hard endosperm made of a cellulose deposit on the inside of the cell walls|
|Seed Color||Light Brown|
|Seed Weight||0.5 g to 4 g|
|Traditional Medicinal Use||
|How to Eat||
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