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Prunes vs Dates - Health impact and Nutrition Comparison

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Article author photo Jack  Yacoubian by Jack Yacoubian | Last updated on June 17, 2023
Medically reviewed by Elen Khachatrian Article author photo Elen Khachatrian
Dates
vs
Prunes

Summary

Prune is richer in calcium and potassium. They have 77 times more vitamin A and 21 times more Vitamin K than dates. Prune is also lower in carbs, calories, and glycemic index. 

In comparison, dates are richer in folate, selenium, and fiber. 

 

Introduction 

Dried fruits are widely used in gastronomy around the world. Dates are among the most common things eaten in the middle east across all cultures. This article compares two dried fruits, prunes, and dates. 
We will compare them according to their general differences, nutritional content, and health impacts. 

General differences

Deglet Noor dates are one of the most common types of dates that are consumed. It has a semi-dry texture. 

Prunes are dried plums that have a semi-dry texture aswell. 

Their flavor profiles are quite different from one another. Dates have a more robust flavor compared to prune. 

Consumption 

Dates are one of the most consumed dried fruits that are consumed all over the world. They are the most famous in the Middle East region. 

Palm oil is derived from the processing of the date palm oil fruit. 

Nutritional content comparison 

 The serving size of a prune is one prune which is about 9.5g, and in comparison, the serving size of a date is 7.1g. 

The comparison is based on 100g of each. 

Calories

Dates are higher in calories compared to prune. 
Date contains 282 calories, whereas prune contains 240 calories. 

Glycemic index 

Dates have a higher glycemic index compared to prune. The glycemic index of date is 42. In comparison, prune has a glycemic index of 29.

Both are classified as low glycemic index foods.

Protein and Fat

They have similar and negligible amounts of proteins and fats. 

Carbs

Their carb content is significantly different. Prune contains 64g of carbs, whereas dates contain 75g. 

Fiber

Dates have a slightly higher fiber content than prunes. Dates have 8g of fiber, and prunes have 7.1g of it per 100g.

Macronutrient Comparison

Macronutrient breakdown side-by-side comparison
:
2
Prunes
Contains more Protein +12.4%
Contains more Carbs +17.5%
Contains more Water +50.6%
Contains more Other +65%
Equal in Fats - 0.38
2% 75% 21%
Protein: 2.45 g
Fats: 0.39 g
Carbs: 75.03 g
Water: 20.53 g
Other: 1.6 g
2% 64% 31% 3%
Protein: 2.18 g
Fats: 0.38 g
Carbs: 63.88 g
Water: 30.92 g
Other: 2.64 g
Contains more Protein +12.4%
Contains more Carbs +17.5%
Contains more Water +50.6%
Contains more Other +65%
Equal in Fats - 0.38
 

Minerals

Prune is richer in calcium and potassium, while dates have a higher amount of selenium.

Below we can see their mineral distributions. 

Mineral Comparison

Mineral comparison score is based on the number of minerals by which one or the other food is richer. The "coverage" charts below show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of the food.
:
6
Prunes
Contains more Selenium +900%
Contains more Calcium +10.3%
Contains more Phosphorus +11.3%
Contains more Potassium +11.6%
Contains more Zinc +51.7%
Contains more Copper +36.4%
Contains more Manganese +14.1%
Equal in Iron - 0.93
Equal in Magnesium - 41
Equal in Sodium - 2
Calcium Iron Magnesium Phosphorus Potassium Sodium Zinc Copper Manganese Selenium 12% 39% 31% 27% 58% 1% 8% 69% 35% 17%
Calcium Iron Magnesium Phosphorus Potassium Sodium Zinc Copper Manganese Selenium 13% 35% 30% 30% 65% 1% 12% 94% 39% 2%
Contains more Selenium +900%
Contains more Calcium +10.3%
Contains more Phosphorus +11.3%
Contains more Potassium +11.6%
Contains more Zinc +51.7%
Contains more Copper +36.4%
Contains more Manganese +14.1%
Equal in Iron - 0.93
Equal in Magnesium - 41
Equal in Sodium - 2
 

Vitamins 

Prunes are richer in vitamin B2, vitamin K, and Vitamin A. Prunes have 77 times more vitamin A and 21 times more Vitamin K than dates.

In comparison, dates are richer in folate. 
 Below we can see their vitamin distributions. 

Vitamin Comparison

Vitamin comparison score is based on the number of vitamins by which one or the other food is richer. The "coverage" charts below show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of the food.
:
8
Prunes
Contains more Vitamin B5 +39.6%
Contains more Folate +375%
Contains more Vitamin A +7710%
Contains more Vitamin E +760%
Contains more Vitamin C +50%
Contains more Vitamin B2 +181.8%
Contains more Vitamin B3 +47.7%
Contains more Vitamin B6 +24.2%
Contains more Choline +60.3%
Contains more Vitamin K +2103.7%
Equal in Vitamin B1 - 0.051
Vitamin A Vitamin E Vitamin D Vitamin C Vitamin B1 Vitamin B2 Vitamin B3 Vitamin B5 Vitamin B6 Folate Vitamin B12 Choline Vitamin K 1% 1% 0% 2% 14% 16% 24% 36% 39% 15% 0% 4% 7%
Vitamin A Vitamin E Vitamin D Vitamin C Vitamin B1 Vitamin B2 Vitamin B3 Vitamin B5 Vitamin B6 Folate Vitamin B12 Choline Vitamin K 47% 9% 0% 2% 13% 43% 36% 26% 48% 3% 0% 6% 149%
Contains more Vitamin B5 +39.6%
Contains more Folate +375%
Contains more Vitamin A +7710%
Contains more Vitamin E +760%
Contains more Vitamin C +50%
Contains more Vitamin B2 +181.8%
Contains more Vitamin B3 +47.7%
Contains more Vitamin B6 +24.2%
Contains more Choline +60.3%
Contains more Vitamin K +2103.7%
Equal in Vitamin B1 - 0.051
 

Health impacts

Nervous system

Dates benefit the nervous system by decreasing inflammatory markers in brain tissue, decreasing the risks of Alzheimer’s disease. (1)

Diabetes

The glycemic index and glycemic load of dates are low, so they will not spike blood glucose levels and are considered safe for people with diabetes when consumed in moderation.

Dates have been shown to provide glycemic control in diabetic patients. Although they are high in carbs, glycemic control was observed when they consumed dates. (2)(3)

Prunes, on the other hand, also have low GI and GL, so they also will not spike blood sugar levels. However, prunes have an effect on diabetes but with another mechanism. They increase satiety levels and reduce food intake. (11)

Antioxidants 

Dates are rich in antioxidants, and they have several benefits regarding overall health. Antioxidant reduces risks of cancer and overall metabolic stress-induced damage. (4)

In addition, phenolic compounds have been shown to decrease the risks of cancer and cardiovascular diseases. (5) 

Prune has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties aswell. In addition, prunes have wound-healing antioxidative properties. (12)

Cardiovascular health 

Consumption of prunes is linked with decreased blood lipid levels and overall control of blood lipids. In turn, decreasing the risks of cardiovascular diseases such as atherosclerosis. In addition, prune consumption is linked with decreased risks of cardiovascular diseases in postmenopausal women. (6)(7)

Prune is a richer source of potassium compared to date, and consumption of potassium is linked with more controlled blood pressure levels. Resulting in decreased rates of cardiovascular diseases. (8) 

Digestive system

Section reviewed by gastroenterologist Arpi Gasparyan Article author photo Arpi Gasparyan

Dates and prunes are rich in fiber, providing several positive impacts on the overall gastrointestinal tract by keeping the microbiome healthy and lowering the risk of several gut diseases. (9)(10)

Vitamin A and K

Prune is richer in vitamins A and K, necessary to maintain normal biochemical and physiological functions regarding the immune system, blood coagulation, cellular metabolism, insulin sensitivity, and bone formation. (13)(14)

Dates do not provide these benefits. 

Article author photo Jack  Yacoubian
Education: Haigazian Medical University
Last updated: June 17, 2023
Medically reviewed by Elen Khachatrian

Infographic

Dates  vs Prunes infographic
Infographic link

Fat Type Comparison

Fat type breakdown side-by-side comparison
:
2
Prunes
Contains less Saturated Fat -63.6%
Contains more Monounsaturated Fat +47.2%
Contains more Polyunsaturated fat +226.3%
37% 41% 22%
Saturated Fat: 0.032 g
Monounsaturated Fat: 0.036 g
Polyunsaturated fat: 0.019 g
43% 26% 31%
Saturated Fat: 0.088 g
Monounsaturated Fat: 0.053 g
Polyunsaturated fat: 0.062 g
Contains less Saturated Fat -63.6%
Contains more Monounsaturated Fat +47.2%
Contains more Polyunsaturated fat +226.3%

Carbohydrate type comparison

Carbohydrate type breakdown side-by-side comparison
:
2
Prunes
Contains more Sucrose +15793.3%
Contains more Fructose +57.1%
Contains more Maltose +100%
Contains more Starch +∞%
Contains more Glucose +28.1%
38% 31% 31%
Starch: 0 g
Sucrose: 23.84 g
Glucose: 19.87 g
Fructose: 19.56 g
Lactose: 0 g
Maltose: 0.12 g
Galactose: 0 g
12% 59% 29%
Starch: 5.11 g
Sucrose: 0.15 g
Glucose: 25.46 g
Fructose: 12.45 g
Lactose: 0 g
Maltose: 0.06 g
Galactose: 0 g
Contains more Sucrose +15793.3%
Contains more Fructose +57.1%
Contains more Maltose +100%
Contains more Starch +∞%
Contains more Glucose +28.1%

Comparison summary table

Pay attention to the rightmost column. It displays the amounts side by side, giving a clearer understanding of the difference.
Dates Prunes
Lower in Sugar ok
Lower in Glycemic Index ok
Rich in minerals ok
Rich in vitamins ok
Lower in Saturated Fat ok
Lower in Sodium Equal
Lower in Cholesterol Equal
Lower in price Equal

All nutrients comparison - raw data values

Nutrient Dates Prunes Opinion
Net carbs 67.03g 56.78g Dates
Protein 2.45g 2.18g Dates
Fats 0.39g 0.38g Dates
Carbs 75.03g 63.88g Dates
Calories 282kcal 240kcal Dates
Starch 5.11g Prunes
Fructose 19.56g 12.45g Dates
Sugar 63.35g 38.13g Prunes
Fiber 8g 7.1g Dates
Calcium 39mg 43mg Prunes
Iron 1.02mg 0.93mg Dates
Magnesium 43mg 41mg Dates
Phosphorus 62mg 69mg Prunes
Potassium 656mg 732mg Prunes
Sodium 2mg 2mg
Zinc 0.29mg 0.44mg Prunes
Copper 0.206mg 0.281mg Prunes
Manganese 0.262mg 0.299mg Prunes
Selenium 3µg 0.3µg Dates
Vitamin A 10IU 781IU Prunes
Vitamin A RAE 0µg 39µg Prunes
Vitamin E 0.05mg 0.43mg Prunes
Vitamin C 0.4mg 0.6mg Prunes
Vitamin B1 0.052mg 0.051mg Dates
Vitamin B2 0.066mg 0.186mg Prunes
Vitamin B3 1.274mg 1.882mg Prunes
Vitamin B5 0.589mg 0.422mg Dates
Vitamin B6 0.165mg 0.205mg Prunes
Folate 19µg 4µg Dates
Choline 6.3mg 10.1mg Prunes
Vitamin K 2.7µg 59.5µg Prunes
Tryptophan 0.012mg 0.025mg Prunes
Threonine 0.043mg 0.049mg Prunes
Isoleucine 0.049mg 0.041mg Dates
Leucine 0.084mg 0.066mg Dates
Lysine 0.066mg 0.05mg Dates
Methionine 0.022mg 0.016mg Dates
Phenylalanine 0.05mg 0.052mg Prunes
Valine 0.071mg 0.056mg Dates
Histidine 0.032mg 0.027mg Dates
Saturated Fat 0.032g 0.088g Dates
Monounsaturated Fat 0.036g 0.053g Prunes
Polyunsaturated fat 0.019g 0.062g Prunes

Which food is preferable for your diet?

ok
ok
is better in case of low diet
Dates Prunes
Low Fats diet ok
Low Carbs diet ok
Low Calories diet ok
Low Glycemic Index diet ok

People also compare

Vitamins & Minerals Daily Need Coverage Score

The summary scores indicate the extent to which this food can fulfill your daily vitamin and mineral requirements if you consume 3 servings, consisting of 100 grams of each (an approximation of 3 serving sizes).
Vitamins Daily Need Coverage Score
12%
Dates
29%
Prunes
Minerals Daily Need Coverage Score
29%
Dates
32%
Prunes

Comparison summary

Which food is lower in Sugar?
Prunes
Prunes is lower in Sugar (difference - 25.22g)
Which food is lower in glycemic index?
Prunes
Prunes is lower in glycemic index (difference - 13)
Which food is richer in minerals?
Prunes
Prunes is relatively richer in minerals
Which food is richer in vitamins?
Prunes
Prunes is relatively richer in vitamins
Which food is lower in Saturated Fat?
Dates
Dates is lower in Saturated Fat (difference - 0.056g)
Which food contains less Sodium?
?
The foods are relatively equal in Sodium (2 mg)
Which food contains less Cholesterol?
?
The foods are relatively equal in Cholesterol (0 mg)
Which food is cheaper?
?
The foods are relatively equal in price ($2)

References

All the values for which the sources are not specified explicitly are taken from FDA’s Food Central. The exact link to the food presented on this page can be found below.

  1. Dates - https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/171726/nutrients
  2. Prunes - https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/168162/nutrients

All the Daily Values are presented for males aged 31-50, for 2000-calorie diets.

Data provided by FoodStruct.com should be considered and used as information only. Please consult your physician before beginning any diet.