Int J Food Sci Nutr 2009 18;60 Suppl 1:99-111. Epub 2008 Oct 18.
Department of Nutrition and Health, College of Food and Agriculture, United Arab Emirates University, Al-Ain, United Arab Emirates.
The pits from date palm fruits (Phoenix dactylifera L.) are nutrient dense but the nutrient composition across varieties has not been extensively studied. In the present study, 18 leading varieties of date pits from date fruits cultivated in the United Arab Emirates (Khalas, Barhe, Lulu, Shikat alkahlas, Sokkery, Bomaan, Sagay, Shishi, Maghool, Sultana, Fard, Maktoomi, Naptit Saif, Jabri, Kodary, Dabbas, Raziz and Shabebe) were analyzed and compared for their chemical and physical properties. Dietary fiber, proximate analysis, micronutrients, and physical properties (weight, length, and density) were determined. Significant differences (P<0.05) in the measured parameters were observed among the different varieties. The results show that date pits, depending on the variety, contain significant but quite variable amounts of macronutrients and micronutrients, but all varieties are excellent sources of dietary fiber and may therefore serve as important constituents of functional foods.