Date palm fruit (Phoenix dactylifera): Effects on vascular health and future research directions

Yousef A. Al-Dashti, Roberta R. Holt, Carl L. Keen, Robert M Hackman

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Cardiovascular disease is a leading cause of death globally, presenting an immense public and economic burden. Studies on cardioprotective foods and their bioactive components are needed to address both personal and public health needs. Date fruit is rich in polyphenols, particularly flavonoids, certain micronutrients, and dietary fiber, which can impact vascular health, and have the potential to attenuate vascular disease in humans. Data from in vitro and animal studies report that consumption of date fruit or extracts can modulate select markers of vascular health, particularly plasma lipid levels including triglycerides and cholesterol, indices of oxidative stress and inflammation, but human data is scant. More investigation is needed to better characterize date polyphenols and unique bioactive compounds or fractions, establish safe and effective levels of intake, and delineate underlying mechanisms of action. Implementing scientific rigor in clinical trials and assessment of functional markers of vascular disease, such as flow-mediated dilation and peripheral arterial tonometry, along with gut microbiome profiles would provide useful information with respect to human health. Emerging data supports the notion that intake of date fruit and extracts can be a useful component of a healthy lifestyle for those seeking beneficial effects on vascular health.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number4665
JournalInternational journal of molecular sciences
Issue number9
StatePublished - 2021


  • Cardiovascular
  • Endothelial function
  • Flavonoids
  • Inflammation
  • Lipids
  • Oxidative stress
  • Polyphenols

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Molecular Biology
  • Spectroscopy
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry


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