Phoenix dactylifera, commonly known as date or date palm, is a flowering plant species in the palm family,Arecaceae, cultivated for its edible sweet fruit. The species is widely cultivated across Northern Africa, the Middle East and South Asia, and is naturalized in many tropical and subtropical regions worldwide. P. dactylifera is thetype speciesof genusPhoenix, which contains 12–19 species of wild date palms, and is the major source of commercial production. Date trees typically reach about 21–23 metres (69–75 ft) in height, growing singly or forming a clump with several stems from a single root system. Date fruits (dates) are oval-cylindrical, 3 to 7 centimetres (1 to 3 in) long, and about 2.5 centimetres (1 in) in diameter, ranging from bright red to bright yellow in colour, depending on variety. Containing 61–68 percentsugarby mass when dried, dates are a very sweet fruit.
The umpteen health benefits of dates has made the delicious fruit of the most sought after foods in the world of health and nutrition. Dates are a good source of various vitamins and minerals, energy, andfiber. It also containscalcium,iron, phosphorus, potassium, magnesium and zinc. It is also dubbed as the healthier substitute for sugar, as unlike sugar it does not contribute empty calories.