Health Benefits of Raisins
Raisins are dried grapes consumed worldwide that contain beneficial components for human health. Raisins, sultanas and currants are different types of dried grapes that are rich in fiber, potassium and antioxidants. The word “raisin” is used for the dark-colored dried large grape, with “sultana” being a golden-colored dried grape, and “currant” being a dried small Black Corinth seedless grape.
Raisins can contain up to 72% sugars by weight, most of which is fructose and glucose. They also contain about 3% protein and 3.7%–6.8% dietary fiber. Raisins, like prunes and apricots, are also high in certain antioxidants, but have a lower vitamin C content than fresh grapes. Raisins are low in sodium and contain no cholesterol.
Health Benefits of Raisins
Raisins are good source of antioxidants, including polyphenols. These polyphenols help protect cells from the harmful damage that can be caused by free radicals and oxidative stress, which contribute to inflammation and many diseases, including chronic heart disease, aging, arthritis and cancer.
Regulate Blood Pressure
Excess salt consumption is known to cause high blood pressure. Raisins have low sodium content and good potassium which is known to lower blood pressure. New data suggest that, among individuals with mild increases in blood pressure, the routine consumption of raisins (three times a day) may significantly lower blood pressure.
Raisins possess a low-to-moderate glycemic index, which makes them a healthy snack. Regular consumption of raisins may reduce glycemia and cardiovascular risk factors, including BP rate. In a randomized, controlled trial, replacing unhealthy snacks with raisins as a dietary habit has shown positive benefits in patients with type 2 diabetes, including reduced diastolic blood pressure.
Raisins are high in fiber and they act as natural laxatives when soaked in water. Fibre-rich food helps to aid the process of digestion. Thus, eating soaked raisins helps prevent constipation and keeps your digestion process in check through the day
Raisins are rich in iron and vitamin B-complex. Iron is the most essential element required for the formation of red blood cells in our body. Raisins are also rich in copper and they help increasing production of new blood cells and thus, prevent anemia
Increase Bone health
Raisins contain about 36 milligrams of calcium per 1/2-cup and Boron, one of vital element. Not the elements help in in maintaining the health of bones. Eating soaked raisins helps in better absorption of these nutrients and thus, improves overall bone density.
Raisins are full of natural sugars but with low glycemic index and are great to curb your sweet cravings without loading on extra calories. They help in controlling your blood sugar levels and beat cravings and all this helps in supporting your weight loss goals. Being rich in fibers raisins helps us to feel full. They also help to control the “bad” low-density lipoprotein (LDL) type of cholesterol in the body
Apart from a host of health benefits, raisins are great as snacks or as a part of a dry fruit trail mix. About 30 grams or a handful of mixed dry fruits everyday to stay healthy and hearty.
Pro tip: The best way to consume raisins in order to reap its maximum health benefits is to soak it and then have it. Soaking raisins improve the absorption of nutrients from raisins thus enhance its benefits.