Nutrition plays an important role in improving and maintaining your overall health and wellness. This is especially true for those who exercise regularly, whether it's light jogging or yoga, high performance training for a sporting event, like a marathon or triathlon.
Now, how do Dates Fruits fit into the picture and how our body can benefits from it?
Think of food as fuel for your body. Professional athletes have a team of nutritionists to help them choose the right foods, but the basic principles of nutrition can be followed by anyone, no matter what their fitness level.
While it may seem daunting to plan your diet around your workout routine, your road to a healthier lifestyle does not have to be paved with boring meals.
As long as you understand what your body needs, you can easily prepare a variety of different foods to provide you with maximum flavour and the right balance of nutrition.
Whether you are beginning your fitness journey or are an experienced athlete, there are several key nutrients that you will need:
Protein - Muscles are developed through exercise and training, and the amino acids in protein help to build and maintain them. Protein sources include lean meats and fish, eggs, as well as vegetables and fruits with a high plant-protein content.
Carbohydrates - This is the primary source of energy for your body, especially for those in high-intensity sports. Carbohydrates can be obtained from grain products like breads, as well as vegetables, nuts and fruits that are high in fructose.
Antioxidants - These have anti-inflammatory properties that greatly help in the post-exercise recovery process. Most vegetables and fruits are a rich source of antioxidants like Vitamin C and E, and they can be obtained from natural fruit juices and green tea.
Iron - Iron helps your body take in oxygen from your bloodstream, and helps prevent fatigue. It can be obtained from red meats, cereals and legumes.
Potassium - Without this, your muscles get tired faster and your reflexes may get slower. Potassium can be found in beans, potatoes, nuts and fruits.
Magnesium - This helps your body absorb oxygen and glucose, making it vital for strength and endurance. It can be obtained from brown rice, vegetables like spinach, and fruit and nuts.
Be sure to look out for superfoods, which are rich in almost all the nutrients you will need to keep yourself fueled and healthy. And there is no better example than the humble date.
Dates may look small but are packed with nutritional value. There are several varieties of dates, all containing similar types of nutrients, but some have higher levels compared to others.
One of the most recognisable varieties is the medjool date, which is larger compared to other dates, darker and has a more caramel-like taste. A single medjool date contains 20g of carbohydrates, which can fuel you for up to one hour of exercise.
Among other date varieties, the lulu date contains the highest amount of potassium (about 491mg per 100g) while khalas dates have the highest iron content (1.75mg per 100g). These slight differences could be due to numerous factors during their cultivation, including soil conditions, humidity and the time of harvest.
One of the best reasons to include dates as part of your workout diet, especially if you are undergoing high-intensity training, is their high fructose and carbohydrate content. This makes them the perfect food to fuel your body, and you can easily burn off any extra calories they would normally produce.
Dates are also the perfect choice for pre- and post-workout foods. Have them for breakfast along with your cereal or yogurt, or eat them after a particularly energetic workout to help with your recovery.
Their small size also makes them great to carry around with you during your exercise routine when you need an extra boost of energy, such as when taking a break during a cross-country run.
If you are looking for something convenient, and rich in essential vitamins and minerals, dates are the perfect power food to accompany you during your workout.
Add an extra boost to your fitness plan today, and make dates your secret weapon to help keep you fueled and ready for action.