In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the Red Date (aka Jujube) is highly valued for it's numerous health benefits, in fact it is one of the most popularly consumed foods for medicinal purposes in China.
From a Traditional Chinese Medical perspective, one of the Jujube's most powerful functions is tonifying the 'Blood'. In Eastern Medicine, Blood is responsible for keeping the tissues and organs moist and nourished, it circulates around the internal organs and flows to the skin, bones and muscles providing nourishment to every cell in the body. Some of the symptoms of Blood Deficiency include weakness, fatigue and light-headedness, dry eyes and skin, dry, thin and brittle hair and nails, a pale complexion, scanty periods, headaches and insomnia. Needless to say, Blood plays a vital role in ensuring the body is functioning at it's optimum level. Consuming Red Dates helps reinforce the Blood and in turn boost strength and energy.
In China it is common for women to eat red dates when they are on their period to replenish Blood. These dates are also thought of as a preconception-food and eaten regularly for a few months to support a balanced, regular cycle and pave the way for a healthy pregnancy. Drinking Red Date Tea is also a well known, traditional 'confinement tea' for new mothers. 'Confinement' in Chinese culture is a 30 day period post-partum when new mothers remain at home and build up and enrich their Blood at this most needed time.
Prized for it's highly nutritional content, Jujube is incorporated into the Chinese diet at any opportunity. It can be found sprinkled on porridge and pastries, supped as a tea, cooked in soups and given as a cherished gift to friends and family.
Alexandra Ross, Traditional Chinese Medical Acupuncturist