Out of all the varieties of dried fruit out there, you’re sure to find at least one kind in almost every pantry: raisins! So small, so sweet, so cute in their wrinkled little skins, raisins are versatile snacks that people enjoy all over the world. 

Are raisins good for you, though? Don’t be fooled by their plain appearance. Raisins hold more health benefits than you may have thought. In moderation, these bite size dried fruits can pack a nutritional punch. 

Since raisins are dried grapes, they are nutrient-rich and calorie-dense. They’re a source of energy, and contain no additives or preservatives which makes them a good snack choice if you are trying to maintain a healthy diet. 

So, let’s unpack a few of their noted health benefits and see just how versatile they really are!

Potential health benefits of raisins

1. Gut Health

Fibre, fibre, fibre. We all know we need it, yet we often don’t get enough fibre. Our bodies need plenty of fibre to help us maintain a healthy gut and digestive system. Raisins are a good source of soluble fibre, which aids digestion and helps reduce stomach issues. They keep you full for longer and help prevent constipation.

Raisins are also a source of tartaric acid which has been known to help balance gut bacteria levels.

2. Heart Health

Are you looking for ways to keep your ticker in good working order? Raisins could have a number of health benefits for your heart. Studies have found links between regular consumption of raisins and:
  • reduced blood pressure
  • reduced blood sugar 
  • lower LDL cholesterol levels
Raisins are also a rich source of potassium, which has been known to reduce risk for high blood pressure, stroke and even heart disease. What’s more, raisins are low in sodium, which means that they help your body get the potassium it needs to function properly.

3. Lowered risk of chronic illness 

Raisins are a rich source of plant compounds called antioxidants, specifically a kind called phytonutrients. In fact, raisins contain higher levels of phytonutrients than other dried fruits. The drying process actually preserves them, leading to higher antioxidant activity in the body when eaten. Antioxidants reduce the effects of oxidative stress on our bodies, and fight off harmful free radicals that can otherwise cause illnesses like cancer, osteoporosis or diabetes.

The phytonutrients found in raisins are also known to have anti-inflammatory properties, helping to reduce inflammation, provide pain relief and even brain protection. 

4.  Oral health

Raisins have even been linked to improvements in oral health! Some of the natural acids they contain are said to have some antibacterial properties which can control the bacteria that forms plaque in our mouths. They also support normal pH levels which keeps saliva from becoming too acidic - and therefore helps prevent tooth cavities!


Enjoy raisins in moderation

There’s something about raisins that makes you want to munch them by the fistful, but a word to the wise: moderation is key! It’s easy to overeat raisins as they don’t fill you up quite like fresh fruit does, so be mindful of how many you eat at a time.

While loaded with health benefits, raisins also contain lots of natural sugars. Too many calories can cause unwanted weight gain, as well as stomach issues like bloating, gas or cramps.

Interesting ways to include raisins in your diet

Raisins may be humble little nuggets, but they can add something special to plenty of meals and snacks. They are delicious on their own, of course, but here are some fun ways to add a little raisin inspiration to your favourite goodies.
  • Mix raisins into bran, oat or banana muffin mix
  • Add a handful of raisins to granola or trail mix
  • Whip up a yummy raisin loaf (ideal for French toast when it goes a bit stale)
  • Bake some raisin and oat cookies
  • Mix raisins into your warm morning oats 
  • Swirl raisins into your cinnamon roll dough
  • Bake into homemade snack bars with cranberries 
  • Use raisins in savoury mince and babotie 
  • Enjoy carrot, raisin and pineapple salad
  • Toss and handful of raisins into coleslaw 
  • Make couscous with raisins and almonds
  • Add raisins to bread and butter pudding 
  • Use raisins in stuffings for pork or lamb
  • Try making your own pickled raisins 
  • Add raisins to home made rice pudding
  • And of course, enjoy raisins in fruit cakes

'Raisin' the bar for healthy snacking

Need more raisins in your life? Take your meals, desserts and lunchboxes to the next level with these sunshine-packed snacks. Stock up on premium quality raisins online or at a Montagu Branded Store near you!
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