Fruits provide vitamins and nutrients to maintain a healthy body. But, only eating one kind of fruit isn’t enough. According to some studies, people should eat a variety of fruits to get all the nutrients they need. However, eating a variety of fruits regularly can be difficult. Not all types of fruits are available all year round. Also, it can be inconvenient for most people to go grocery shopping often only to get fresh fruits. That’s why many people resort to dried fruits. Besides its convenience, it has many benefits. Here are some benefits of dried fruit :
Increases nutrient intake
Eating more dried fruit than fresh fruits can give more nutrients to the body. The drying process condenses nutrients in the fruit. It can provide more potassium, folate, and magnesium to name a few.
Prevents and controls diabetes
Despite being high in sugar, dried fruit can prevent and reduce the risk of diabetes. Common dried fruits like raisins have antioxidants. Antioxidants in dried fruit can improve the response of insulin. They can also prevent oxidative stress and inflammation in the pancreas.
Boosts the immune system
For a quick immune system boost, dried goji berries may help. They’re considered as superfoods that contain iron, vitamin A, and vitamin C. Also, they have lower calorie and carb content. The vitamin C in dried fruit not only enhances the immune system. It also improves skin quality and fights off infections.
Improves colon and digestive health
Dried fruit can help improve color health. It has prebiotic fiber. This helps the healthy bacteria to keep the digestive tract going. Prunes or dried plums are high in potassium, vitamin A, vitamin K, and fiber. It’s a well-known natural laxative. They can improve constipation symptoms. They could also improve the consistency and frequency of stool.
Reduces anxiety and depression symptoms
Dried goji berries can also reduce anxiety and depression. The polysaccharides in goji berries can increase melatonin and/or serotonin levels. This would reduce anxiety and depression. The antioxidants in goji berry could also relieve anxiety and improve memory.
Aids healthy pregnancies
Eating dried dates may aid smooth labor and delivery. It can help the cervix dilate in the last few months of pregnancy. This may reduce the risks of induced labor.
Dates also have other benefits for pregnant women. They have potassium, iron, and fiber. Dried dates are among the best antioxidant sources. Eating them won’t increase blood sugar levels.
Promotes weight loss
Certain dried fruit such as apricots, dates, prunes, and raisins can help increase metabolism. Boosted metabolism can improve energy and promote weight loss.
Dried fruit can keep cravings at bay. They can fill a stomach for a couple of hours. Instead of snacking on unhealthy, sugar-filled foods, dried fruit is the better option. Also, an improved digestive tract because of dried fruit can prevent bloating.
Prevents bone-related illnesses
Women may reap the most benefits from dried fruit, especially for their bones. It’s because osteoporosis often hits more women than men.
Eating dried fruit can help reduce the risks of osteoporosis. Prunes help suppress bone breakdown, especially in old-aged women. This gives the bones enough time to recover again.
Improves heart health
Dried fruit can also improve heart health. An ounce of dried fruit contains more antioxidants and fiber than one ounce of fresh fruit. These components are essential parts in keeping your heart healthy.
Dried cranberries can help prevent blood clots. This may aid in keeping consistent blood flow from the heart throughout the body.
Keeps skin healthy
Incorporating more dried fruit in diets can also keep skin looking fresh and healthy. Dried mangoes provide omega 3 and other fatty nutrients that help improve skin quality. Raisins have resveratrol, which is a natural skin-aging inhibitor.
Prevents anemia and hypertension
Many kinds of dried fruit such as apricots are rich in potassium. It helps prevent hypertension and palpitation.
Iron can also be found in apricots, prunes, and raisins. Increasing iron intake through dried fruit can help reduce the risks of anemia. This makes dry fruit an essential part of vegan and pregnancy diets.
Reduces the risks of mental illnesses
Dried berries like strawberries and blueberries can help promote mental health. They are high in antioxidants, which can help prevent memory loss and other mental illnesses. These are best for the elderly who are more susceptible to dementia.
There’s a reason why many energy bars have dry fruit in them. It’s because it can give an energy boost. Have a quick snack of dried grapes (raisins), cherries, and apricots in between meals. They can give enough energy to last a busy day.
Things to Consider When Eating Dried Fruit
Despite the benefits of dry fruits, there are still some things to consider before eating them.
- Don’t eat candied fruit. Syrup and sugar are often added to dry fruit to make them more appealing. They may taste better, but they’re not healthy. They may result in adverse effects instead.
- Consider making dry fruit at home. Nothing beats homemade food. Dying fruit at home is best since it won’t have any harmful additives.
- Avoid allergic reactions. People with allergies to some fruits should avoid trail mix or mixed dried fruits.
- Too much is bad. Fruits, whether dried or not, still contain calories and natural sugars. When eaten in excess, it may do more harm than good. It’s best to eat them moderately.
- Don’t use them as the main source of nutrition. Aside from eating them in small amounts, dry fruit mustn’t be the only source of nutrition. They’re best eaten with other healthy foods.
People can gain benefits of dried fruit when eaten properly. It can help improve overall health. Try eating dried fruit as an alternative to drug supplements. It’s healthier and natural. It’s possible to dry most kinds of fruit. This gives people a wide variety of choices. Still, they mustn’t be eaten too much. Like other foods, eat them in moderation. Always choose natural dried fruit without the added sugar. Drying fruits at home is the best way to ensure that they don’t have any unhealthy ingredients
Ref: Drying All Foods