Chinese dates, also called jujube fruit, have tremendous preventative health benefits. Dr. Zhang Yifang, author and Radiant Shenti advisor, recently summarized these benefits, and you can read her wisdom below.
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Benefits of Chinese dates
Have you heard of Chinese red dates (??)? Although not as well-known in the West, Chinese red dates (or jujube fruit) are lauded as a delicious superfruit and herbal tonic in the East. They originate from the middle and lower reaches of the Yellow River.
Chinese red dates are one of the most popular health foods in China, and their numerous health benefits are well documented. Jujube fruit tonifies the circulatory system and increase blood volume.
For example, they are an ideal ingredient to add to your diet to help restore your blood volume after menstruation. They are also great for supporting the production of gastric juices (spleen deficiency) and balancing and increasing Qi (Qi deficiency). They also help you sleep better.
Contraindications for Chinese dates
Like many functional foods, Chinese red dates come with a few contraindications, and should be avoided if you have excess dampness or stagnation (i.e., a slow metabolic rate or slow digestive system). Some symptoms of dampness and stagnation are cellulite and distention of the stomach. Chinese dates should also be avoided if you have a case of jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes).
Chinese red dates are a delicious and safe ingredient to consume either dry or as a decoction/tea. They can also be combined with other ingredients such as ginger, longan or goji berries (depending on your migraine profile). In Chinese culture, Chinese red dates are associated with a sweet life, flourishing business, fertility, harmony and happiness, and are enjoyed by thousands of people.
Nourishing jujube fruit, lotus seed, and millet porridge
In this delicious and nourishing porridge, jujube fruit combines with two additional Chinese superfoods - lotus seeds and millet. You can enjoy it for breakfast. Also, you might choose to make a large batch and reheat in a steamer pot.
How the ingredients for this Chinese red dates porridge work
Lotus seed (lotus plumule): reduces Liver heat; calms the mind; nourishes the Heart; treats irritability, insomnia, itchy red eyes, and dizziness. Contraindication if constipated or you have a weak stomach.
Jujubes (Chinese red dates, Korean dates): strengthens the Spleen and Stomach; nourishes the blood; calms the mind; reduces toxicity. No contraindications.
Millet: harmonizes the Spleen and Stomach; tonifies the Kidney; clears heat and removes toxins; can act as a diuretic; balances overly acidic situations; sweetens the breath by slowing bacterial growth in the mouth; high amino acid (protein) profile; anti-fungal; treats diarrhea (roast first), vomiting, indigestion, and diabetes. Contraindication includes people with loose stools and very weak digestion.
Usage: Eat any time of year, 4-5 days per week is fine. Ideally do not refrigerate, but it’s okay if you need to.
- 10 lotus seeds
- ¼ cup sliced jujube or 5 whole Chinese red dates
- ½ cup dried millet
- 4-5 cups water
- Add all ingredients and water to a saucepan
- Bring to a boil
- Reduce heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes
- Eat as a soup or drink as a broth
Chinese Dates References
Zhang, Y. (2021). Personal communication. Learn more ways to heal naturally with TCM foods in Dr. Zhang's books.