I’ve always loved salads that were loaded with flavour, but in the past I considered loaded with flavour to mean loaded with creamy salad dressing (and maybe some cucumber chunks). I’ve since realized that most of that dressing is full of ingredients and chemicals that aren’t very good for me; so for the past few years I have switched over to making my own simple dressings, and have learned to look elsewhere for my flavour overload. Now when I think of a loaded salad, I think of a salad that is loaded with flavourful and healthy toppings! My new favourite topping to add to my salads are medjool dates! They have a great sweet taste, and are good for your body. They are especially good when paired with something that is spicy! I’ve been using my fermented hot pepper relish, but you can also just chop up some jalapeno, banana peppers, or use horseradish!
WHAT ARE MEDJOOL DATES?
Dates are a fruit from the date palm. Medjool Dates, AKA the “King of Dates” are a soft, large variation of date that are sweet with a caramel-like flavour. They’ve traditionally been grown in North Africa and the Middle East, but are now grown in North America, specifically California.
Most people enjoy Medjool dates because they satisfy your sweet tooth while also being good for you. In moderation of course, because these sweet little morsels do have a high natural sugar content. Here are some of the nutrients and health benefits linked to Medjool dates:
- Easy to digest – which means its nutrients are easier for your body to absorb
- High in fibre – Specifically soluble fibre, which helps to maintain healthy blood sugar and cholesterol levels, also softens stool 🙂
- Source of copper – An essential trace metal in your body. Aids in the absorption and use of iron, maintains normal brain and red blood cell function
- Selenium – Helps immune functioning, linked to cancer prevention and contains 23 types of amino acids
- Vitamin B6– 6% of the suggested daily intake with just 2 dates
- High in Potassium – Potassium helps to maintain heart rate and blood pressure. Bite for bite you’re getting 3X the amount of potassium with a date vs. a banana!
Medjool dates have been linked to several other health benefits, Google away and you can find additional sources and information.
If you’re interested in purchasing Medjool dates, you can find them at most supermarkets. Our local Whole Foods sells small containers of organic dates in their prepackaged section. That’s where I bought the dates I used in this Rawnola Recipe. If you don’t have a Whole Foods near you, we’ve also purchased Natural Delights dates from other supermarkets. They have a store locator on their website that shows where you can pick up these little bites of heaven!