#WellnessWednesday with Liviya

Did you know that when you are feeling low it is quite natural for your body to crave comfort food? Living in lock down has left a lot of us craving cookies and sugary foods. We have also not been able to exercise the way we used to and that has led to a lot of us gaining weight.

Our team at Liviya Nutrition and Fitness are dedicated to help you to adjust to this new way of life and to come out fitter and healthier than what you were at the start of the pandemic. Today we are going to introduce you to a sweet super food a.k.a dates and show you how to make date syrup.

Dates are one of the healthiest foods in the world. They have a noble history that healers have used through centuries for many of the same properties they are still used for today. Dates are loaded with minerals, vitamins and health-benefiting phytonutrients. They are easily digested and the dietary fibre in dates helps you to feel fuller for longer. They help prevent the absorption of bad cholesterol and bind with substances that can decrease biological compounds that cause cancer.

Apart from the fluorine that keeps your teeth healthy, dates also contain iron, which is highly recommended for those who suffer from iron deficiency. Dates are high in potassium, which is an electrolyte the body needs for good heart health. Dates contain carotenoids which are proven to promote heart health and may also reduce the risk of eye-related disorders, such as macular degeneration.

And if that’s not enough reason to eat dates, they also taste delicious and are a fabulous alternative to sugar! What’s more – dates are a low glycemic index food which means that they do not spike blood sugar levels the way that sugar does. Eating dates and using them as a sugar substitute may help those with a sweet tooth avoid those high glycemic foods. But always eat everything in moderation as too much of a good thing won’t stay a good thing for long!

Date Syrup (makes 1 large jar)

Cost of ingredients in May 2020: Approximately R18 for 500ml

Ingredients

  • 250g pack of pitted dates
  • boiling water
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Method

  • Open the pack of dates and break it up into pieces. Put the pieces into a food processor or tall Nutribullet cup and pour boiling water over it (just enough to cover the date pieces so that the dates soften).
  • Leave to cool.
  • Add the lemon juice and cinnamon and blitz in the Nutribullet. Pour into a large glass jar and keep in the fridge.
  • Suggested ways to enjoy your date syrup:
  • Add a spoonful to cereal, porridge or yogurt to sweeten. Use instead of honey or jam on your favourite bread or use as an alternative to sugar to sweeten treats when baking.

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