The fruit's English name comes from the Greek word for "finger", dáktulos, because of the fruit's elongated shape. Date palms can take 4 to 8 years after planting before they will bear fruit, and start producing viable yields for commercial harvest between 7 and 10 years. Dry or soft dates are eaten out-of-hand, or may be pitted and stuffed with fillings such as almonds, walnuts, pecans, candied orange and lemon peel, tahini, marzipan or cream cheese.
The benefits of dates include relief from constipation, intestinal disorders, heart problems, anemia, sexual dysfunctions, diarrhea, abdominal cancer, and many other conditions. Dates also help in healthy weight gain. They are rich in several vitamins, minerals, and fiber. These delicious fruits contain oil, calcium, sulfur, iron, potassium, phosphorous, manganese, copper and magnesium, which are all beneficial for health.