Making a date with dates
The date fruit and the palm are mentioned in several verses of the Holy Quran. In Surah Maryam it says:
“And the pains of childbirth drove her to the trunk of a palm tree; she cried (in her anguish) “Ah! Would that I had died before this! Would that I been a thing forgotten and out of sight.” But (a voice) cried to her from beneath the (palm-tree): Grieve not! for thy Lord hath provided a rivulet beneath thee; and shake towards thyself the trunk of the palm-tree: it will let fall fresh ripe dates upon thee. So eat and drink and cool (thine) eye.” Holy Quran(19:23-26).
There are many ahadith from the Prophet SAW about dates:
Sayyidatina A’isha RA heard the Prophet SAW saying: “Indeed in dates there is a cure.”
He was also reported to have said: “ Whoever finds dates should break his fast with them and the one who does not should break his fast with water because it is pure.”
In another narration he said: “ The one who eats 7 dates in the morning will be protected that day from poison and envy.”
The Prophet SAW said: “Break your fast by eating dates as it is purifying.”
Dried dates are ideal and sufficient food for man as they contain the basic food substances such as sugar, acids, minerals, fats, proteins etc. The Prophet SAW and his family are known to have lived on dates alone for many days on many occasions when food was scarce in the household.
Dates contain several vitamins and minerals whose importance as a dietary supplement was appreciated by the desert people who, for thousands of years, ate dates with goat or camel milk as complete sustenance.
During the fasting month of Ramadan, Muslims the world over traditionally break their fast with dates and water. This tradition goes back to the Prophet SAW. Many ahadith report that the Prophet SAW encouraged his followers to eat dates for a variety of reasons.
Dates are nutritious and they help to detoxify the body from toxic metabolites. The Prophet SAW is reported to have said that whoever starts his day eating 7 semi-dried dates would be protected from poison and effects of evil power.
As mentioned above, when the mother of Prophet Jesus AS was giving birth to him and she was experiencing pain, she was told to “shake the trunk of the palm towards you and fresh, ripe dates will drop down onto you.”
Modern science have shown that eating dates are beneficial for pregnant women and nursing mothers. Dates contain certain stimulants which assist in the strengthening of the muscles of the womb which can lead to an easier delivery. The sugar content of dates is about 80% making it an ideal high energy food for nursing mothers.
Dates are rich in potassium and used as cure for deficiency diseases. They are also readily available source of iron, calcium, magnesium, boron etc. It is able to provide all such minerals in an easily digestible form without taxing the digesting system. Dates are said to be useful in the treatment of respiratory disorders, heart conditions, cancer, anemia, allergies, and constipation. Bedouin Arabs, who eat them on a regular basis, show an extremely low incidence rate of cancer and heart disease.
Modern science is continually unraveling its wonders. In the meantime, we should attempt to include dates as part of our daily menu!