The Humble, Yet Delicious, Raisin
Of all of the dried fruits that we have available to us, the raisin has to be the most humble. In fact, we often take raisins for granted. We use them for snacking, we bake with them, we even add them to soups, sauces and desserts. Raisins are such a versatile fruit that just about every culture in the world eats them. That puts raisins right up their with coffee, tea, rice, and pasta.
And, despite their diminutive size, raisins are packed full of energy and rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Although raisins are naturally sweet and high in sugar and calories, they are still greatly beneficial to our health when eaten in moderation. In fact, raisins can aid digestion, boost iron levels, and keep your bones strong.
Raisins Nutrition Facts
Raisins have extremely high antioxidant levels and phenol content compared to other popular dried fruits. The nutritional facts for a serving of raisins are:
- Calories – 129
- Protein – 1.42 g
- Fats – 0.11 g
- Carbohydrates – 34.11 g
- Sugars – 28.03 g
- Dietary fiber – 1.9 g
- Vitamin C – 1 mg
- Calcium – 27 mg
- Iron – 0.77 mg
- Magnesium – 15 mg
- Potassium – 320 mg
- Phosphorous – 42 mg
- Sodium – 11 mg
History Of Raisins
Grapes were first cultivated in the eastern part of Mediterranean and in Armenia around 4th century BC. Ancient people from this region buried fresh grapes in the sun-baked desert for a few days until they became dried and sweeter. Egyptian and Phoenician people popularised raisin production because their living environment was ideal for sun drying. Dried fruits were stored in jars for different temples. From the Middle East, the production of raisins spread to Europe, through Greece and Italy. Ancient Romans consumed raisins in large quantities by all levels of society. Raisins were eaten along with fresh fruits and olives. Breads with raisins were common for breakfast, along with cultured milks, beans, and grains. Raisins were also made as currency for bartering.
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