Eat Well

10 reasons to add Jujube fruit to your diet

If you’ve been to any Holistic Scotland Magazine events recently, or visited us at the Just V and Allergy & Free From or Scottish Hair & Beauty Show, you might have picked up a little packet of Red Dates from Abakus Foods.

We fell in love with these healthy, vegan snacks at first taste and have since been helping Abakus Foods spread the word about the Jujube Fruit (which is their official name).

If you’ve never heard of the Jujube Fruit, it’s high time you found out about this well-kept secret from the Far East!

The Jujube Fruit has been enjoyed – thanks, in part, to its association with longevity – in the Far East for thousands of years. It’s also thought that celebrities including Cindy Crawford are avid fans who swear by it.

Jujube Fruits – also known as Red Dates – are sweet berries with a natural caramel flavour. Their texture is soft and squishy and they can be enjoyed as a snack, or sweet ingredient on top of porridge, in tea, baking, or cooking.

The fruits normally come with a pit inside similar to an olive, but some brands offer them with the pits already taken out. When shopping for Jujube Fruits, make sure to choose the ones without any sulphites.

10 health benefits of the Jujube Fruit:

1) Improves Sleep 

Jujubes contain phytonutrients compounds that are rich in flavonoids and saponins. The soothing nature of saponin can help calm the body and mind, and help soothe your nervous system. In herbal medicine, jujubes are used to help with anxiety and insomnia.

2) General Gastrointestinal Health

Consuming jujube fruit regularly can be beneficial for your gastrointestinal health. The Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry found that adequate jujube consumption can improve gastrointestinal environment and reduce exposure to other harmful compounds.

3) Chronic Constipation Relief

Jujube fruits are a source of insoluble fibre which can help speed up passing time of the food in the intestines. A study from Israel found that jujube is an effective and safe treatment for chronic constipation.

4) Anticancer Abilities

The antioxidants found in jujube can help fight free radicals in the body. Several studies have shown the ability of jujube to prevent spreading of cancer cells. A study by the University of Cambria showed that it could effectively slow down the spread of, and even kill, malignant breast cancer cells (4).

5) Uplifting and Calming Fruit

Jujubes are known for having a soothing effect on the mind and body. That’s the reason they have  been traditionally used as a natural antidepressant, anti-anxiety and anti-stress medicinal food. Results from The Journal of Ethnopharmacology found that jujube is effective in reducing anxiety.

6) Controls Weight

Jujube fruits, with less than 100 kcal per serving, are low in calories and high in fibre, which can help the slow release of energy and to keep you feel fuller for longer. Next tine, when the sweet craving hits, enjoy a few caramel-tasting jujube berries for a guilt-free alternative to sweets.

7) Skin Care 

Jujube extract has traditionally been rubbed on skin irritations like psoriasis and acne. Consuming jujube can have the same benefits and can also help reduce blemishes, wrinkles, scars while energising the skin with oxygenated blood. A study from Iran has shown that jujube fruits can help manage eczema and reduce itching.

8) Reduces Inflammation

Jujube can be used topically to address muscle aches and pains. Jujubes work as an anti-inflammatory agent, according to a study, which make them the ideal post-workout snack.

9) Boosts Immunity

Free radicals from physical and environmental stress can compromise the body’s immune system and cause premature ageing. Jujube is rich in antioxidant and vitamins which can help neutralise free radicals, and thereby strengthen your immunity.

10) Aids Protein Formation and Recovery

Jujube fruits contain 18 out of 24 essential amino acids which are the foundation for building proteins in the body. Eating foods with a complete amino acid profiles can aid tissue repair and recovery, post injury or simply after a work-out. They can also help boost protein levels for those on a plant-based diet.  

The versatile jujube fruits can be enjoyed as a snack or a sweet ingredient. Here is a delicious jujube fruit tea recipe:

Jujube Tea

Red Dates Ginger Tea Recipe – GF, DF, Vegan

Ingredients:

  • 30 grams of pitted jujube fruits
  • 2 slices of fresh ginger root
  • One piece of cinnamon bark

Instructions:

  1. Cook 300 ml of water in a kettle
  2. Tear or cut jujube fruits into smaller pieces
  3. Add jujube, ginger, and cinnamon bark inside a cup
  4. Pour the boiling water into the cup, the water should cover all the ingredients, and cover the cup with a lid 
  5. After about 5 minutes, the tea should take a lovely golden colour and smell like caramel 
  6. Enjoy and drink while hot

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