Okay, so here it is: another discussion on dried dates
I ordered a box last week and it's come and I've eaten a great amount and I'm sharing my experience now on what I think about dates and how my body has reacted to them.
Straight to the point:
I do not believe eating whole, dried dates are optimal because:
1) LOW WATER CONTENT-They are a dried/very low-water content fruit. Thus, to digest it, your body has to pull water out of your body and this dehydrates you. Dates don't add water to your body but takes water from your body. Whenever I eat a lot of dates, I notice I always get very thirsty and have to drink water afterwards. Even if I soak the dates in water and they have a much higher water content, I still get thirsty.
2) NOT A WHOLE FOOD- Dates, most of the time, are a dried fruit. All fruits come with vitamin C, but if you read the nutritional package on all dates, it has a vitamin C content of 0%. Being that it's not a whole food, it can cause minor to serious imbalances in your body. Douglas Graham says this in the 80-10-10 book that dates are a "refined carbohydrate," not a whole food and, being a partial food, can cause imbalances in the body. I have noticed this while eating dates that I don't feel as whole and complete as when eating whole fresh fruits and vegetables.
3) LOSS OF ENERGY- Dates, being very thick and waterless, can lead to slouchiness probably because it can takes a great deal of digestion more than high-water content fruits. When I eat dates, I can feel the energy loss and slouchiness when I'm done eating.
4) CAN CAUSE BAD BREATH- Has anyone noticed that after eating dates, it can cause halitosis. The same thing occurs when you eat too much overts, like durian or avocado. Anything that causes bad breath or any odor in your body is something that your body doesn't want in it. Nothing that you put in your body should cause any odor or bad breath at all. So it seems like your body doesn't want dates in it, since dates can lead to this.
This is just my conclusion. I've eaten a lot from Bautista dates I've gotten and noticed all of these effects. I understand that in times of calorie needs, we go to dates. But it should not be a first choice or a choice at all when other whole fruits and vegetables are available. Of course when nothing is around, it's better to eat dates than to starve just like it's better to eat any type of cooked food than to starve, but I would not go date binging.
Michael Arnstein also has a great video on this and I agree with him. Here's the video:
I feel that the topic of dates deserves more clarification. First of all, the date is not a "dried fruit" by proxy. All dates go through three ripening stages: "balah," "rutab" and "tamer." During the balah stage, the date is semi-ripe, crunchy, quite watery and probably as sweet as a ripe apple would be. Many folk enjoy consuming their dates during this stage. I myself never cared for the balah taste, as I find it leaves an unpleasant sensation in the mouth (not unlike the one caused by unripe persimmons).
During the rutab stage, the dates become quite ripe and soft, but still retain plenty of their original moisture. This is the ideal time for consumption and the date is by all means considered a fresh fruit. Rutab dates are typically in season between late August and late December. Many farmers freeze their rutab for year-round consumption. I find that dates consumed during this stage have little or no side effects.
The final "tamer" stage is when the date is either fully ripened on the tree or is picked and left to dry in the sun. Most commercial dates are exported after they reach the tamer stage. I minimize my intake of tamer and I almost always soak it in water for a good while before consumption.
Also, consider the evolutionary purpose of the date: it grows in the desert, the home of nomadic tribes. These people need a calorie-dense fuel source that is fairly storable. By design, it is not meant to be consumed in high quantities unless one is refueling following some strenuous effort.
I hope this clears up some of the confusion surrounding the date. It may not be as easy to digest as an orange, but it packs at least three times the punch in both taste and calories (pound for pound) :)
I crave mangoes (oh my!), papayas, peaches, etc... but only if I am VERY hungry do I seem to crave dates. Of course, I don't get enough strenuous exercise, so who knows how that would change if I did! When I was training for a marathon, I had datorade quite a lot and made date paste to throw in (almond) milkshakes or even fruit smoothies.
Now dates kind of gross me out, but that's because I have not yet found a good source for dates in Brazil. Dried out dates are not appealing to me at all!
What's the deal with people thinking dates are dried? The ones from The Date people are so fresh and juicy, they basically fall apart when you eat them. They are indeed a whole food. I have to disagree with everything said in this post, and I know i'm not alone.
Without dates, I find that I do not feel optimal. Dates provide my lifeforce. I find juicy fruit extremely lacking in sweetness. I crave dates and without them I'm not sure how I would even function! I go through about 10lbs a week and if I had more access to Date People dates, I'd only eat dates!
Not only do they not cause bad breath, they actually sweeten my breath!
C'mon, we need some date supporters here!
This post is full of opinions based on something that has been shipped across a country and dried.
They dry some of their dates, but anyone can order fresh barhi, halawi, medjool and others. They melt in your mouth!
I would give them a call. It's nearing the end of their season. I just spoke with Jamie today and he said they can send me one more order but that's all. I become depressed at the thought of no more Date People dates. They're heaven.
They're great to deal with and reasonably priced. Give em' a call!
Hey, Tarah . . .
I order my organic dates from Steve Jones in Arizona. Lately I have been getting just Barhis and they are the best I've ever had! Melt in your mouth caramel! These dates have gotten me through the winter. I usually order 10 pounds at a time, but these are so good I'm about to order 20 pounds!
You might want to try ordering from him. He doesn't have a website, so you can just email him: firstname.lastname@example.org. You won't be sorry! : )