Dates are fruit from the Date Palm

Hello it’s Melissa from New Life Doula Services.  This is my first Wenatchee Mom Blog post!  I couldn’t decide what my first post should be but I was reminded of this one I wrote about 4 years ago when I was on a Wenatchee Mom’s facebook group the other day.   So I thought I’d better share the love!  (Yes I spell things like labour and favourite differently than the US, just ignore it if you can 🙂

I like sticky date pudding, (it’s a decadent sweet desert with a creamy caramel sauce best served with vanilla ice cream) and date loaf/bread/muffins (like banana bread), but I’ve never really been a huge fan of just eating dates plain…..that is until I just tried the Majool dates.. yum…. more expensive but yum… but my wallet decided I needed compare the nutritional value of the common dates  (which I discovered you can get at Costco in the dried fruit section seasonally so I always stock up when I see them) and they were pretty similar to the Majool dates.  And after doing a little bit more research I have decided that all dates are amazing!!!!! (the fruity kind).

Why am I talking about dates??

A small study has been done to measure the effect that eating dates might have on labour and birth. An initial investigation, published here, showed some great outcomes for women who ate six dates per day for only four weeks before their estimated due date.

What were those benefits?  Compared with the group who ate no dates…..

  • There was an increase in spontaneous beginning of labour,
  • Cervix was further dilated,
  • Waters remained intact longer,
  • The use of drugs to augment (help strengthen contractions) labour was reduced, and
  • The time it took for the first stage of labour was significantly reduced (510 min vs 906 min).

In addition another one looked at the effect of eating dates immediately after the baby was born to reduce postpartum bleeding as opposed to using synthetic oxytocin. Again the results were favourable toward eating the humble date!

They contain at least six vitamins, minerals like potassium, iron, calcium and zinc, salts and fibre as well as sugar for an energy boost.

What a easy, nutritious, cost effective and yummy way to aid your birth!!

And for those of you who don’t really like the taste of plain dates you need to make some Bliss Balls!!  There are heaps of recipes online.   My favourite recipe is super simple… And it’s approximate.

The last three bliss balls, time to make some more!

1 cup dates

1 cup almonds

1 – 2 tablespoons cocoa powder

1 tablespoon maple syrup

1/2 cup or more of flaked coconut for rolling the balls (best to get it unsweetened I found it in the bulk food section at Fred Meyer)

Put it all together in a food processor (I used a Thermomix), roll mixture into balls and into coconut and voila! Yummy date balls!  Of course play around with the quantities and ingredients to your liking.. change the almonds to oats or use peanut butter and make it your own!

Bliss Balls make great labour snacks and postpartum breastfeeding snacks too!  

I’d better go, I’ve got a date!