Raisins are produced by naturally drying fresh grape fruits containing seeds or without them under sunlight, until the moisture content becomes 16% inside the fruits. Raisins can be eaten alone, or added during cooking and in some types of sweet such as: cakes, biscuits, and some other sweets to add flavor, and raisins are made in many countries around the world, including: the United States, China, Turkey, Chile, South Africa, Argentina, and the European Union .
Raisins content of nutrients
Raisins are rich in many nutrients that are beneficial for health, and some of them are mentioned below:
- Iron: Eating raisins may help reduce the risk of anemia because they contain many minerals like iron, copper, and many vitamins, which are important in the formation of red blood cells and the transport of oxygen to all parts of the body.
- Potassium: Raisins are a rich source of potassium. Half a cup of raisins contains 618 milligrams of potassium. It is worth noting that potassium is beneficial for cardiovascular health because it helps relax blood vessels.
- Antioxidants: Raisins are an important source of some phytonutrients such as phenols and polyphenols, which are antioxidant compounds that help remove free radicals from the blood, which may reduce the risk of cell and DNA damage.
- Fiber: The amount of fiber in half a cup of raisins ranges between 10-24% of the daily recommended amount of fiber, depending on age and gender, and fiber is useful for digestion. Also, eating fiber increases the time needed to empty the stomach, which gives a feeling of fullness for a longer period of time and may contribute to promoting weight loss.
- Calcium: Half a cup of raisins contains 4% of the daily recommended amount of calcium. Calcium is an important element for healthy bones and teeth.
Benefits of Raisins
- Reducing the risk of heart disease: Eating raisins on a regular basis may help reduce factors that increase the risk of cardiovascular disease such as high blood pressure, and this effect is due to the fact that raisins contain low amounts of sodium, in addition to being an important source of potassium which helps dilate blood vessels
- Reducing blood pressure: As Raisins are a high-fiber food may help significantly to reduce high blood pressure
- Reducing insulin levels in the blood: Eating raisins helps to regulate the glycemic index after meals.
- Reduce the risk of tooth decay and gum disease. The phytochemicals in raisins help improve oral health and reduce the risk of gum disease.
- Raisins help people lose weight: Despite their high calorie content, raisins may be an excellent addition to a balanced diet. They do, however, provide good sources of carbohydrates. As dietary fiber, which is crucial for weight control. it is also rich in all the nutrients that grapes contain, and therefore it provides a healthy alternative to high-fat snacks that contain added sugars.
Allowable amounts of raisins
Grapes are generally considered safe when eaten in the amounts found in food. It is safe to consume it in medicinal quantities, but it is worth noting that eating large quantities of fresh grapes, raisins, or currants may cause diarrhea.
Side effects of eating raisins
There are some cases that must be taken with caution when consuming raisins, and we mention from these cases the following:
- Choking in children: Some foods, such as: grapes, raisins, nuts, cereals, and sweets, may cause choking in children aged 1–3 years.
- Allergic reaction to sulfites: Sometimes sulfites are added to raisins, where they keep their color from changing after drying, which makes their shape better. This material is applied to fruits that have a bright color such as raisins and apricots, but some people may suffer from an allergic reaction to sulfites. Eating them may cause stomach cramps, skin rashes, and an asthma attack.
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