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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    Are fresh dates my friend or foe?

    Related Topic
    I understand the nutritional value of eating fresh dates, but I've also heard mixed advice regarding how often they should be eaten and in what amount. I've hit my weight loss plateau, and was wondering if my 6 dates each day is detrimental to my weight loss. I am pretty active most days (40min mod intensity cardio)
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    Nicole Senior

    Dietitian, Nutritionist

    I'm an Accredited Practising Dietitian and Nutritionist, consultant, author, speaker and food and health enthusiast. I love talking and writing about food and health.(please note, ... View Profile

    Dates can be your friend provided you don't overdo the friendship! Fresh dates are certainly a good choice if you want a sweet snack and are much healthier than lollies because they contain fibre, vitamins and minerals, and have a low glycemic index (GI). What you need to know is they are a concentrated form of eating fruit. Six dates contain 640 kilojoules, or more than twice the kilojoules of a medium sized  piece of fresh fruit (like an apple).  I think limiting yourself to 6 dates at a time is wise but I'd encourage you to prioritise fresh fruit and limit the frequency you eat dates in order to boost your weight loss (or stop at 3 dates). You might find increasing the duration or increasing the intensity (or both) of your exercise will help push past the plateau.

  • Peta Adams

    Dietitian

    I am an Accredited Practising Dietitian locally born and working within the Riverina.I have a passion for helping people to achieve their nutrition goals, coaching ... View Profile

    Great advice from Nicole, I also have one thing to add.

    When are you exercsing and eating? If you do enjoy the dates and exercise before a meal or later in the afternoon, dates produce a quicker glycaemic response and could be used a quick fuel source for higher intensity exercise Nicole has encouraged.

    You could also try lowering your intake of dates and other concentrated sources of carbohydrates and aim for whole fruit and low GI grains in controlled portions, around your exercise.

    As Nicole said change diet and exercise can help to push past those weightloss plateaus.

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