9 Health Benefits Of Dried Apricots + Nutritional Facts

Reviewed By Registered Dietitian Staci Gulbin, MS, MEd, RD, LDN
by Ravi Teja Tadimalla

Dried apricots are made by drying apricot fruits. Their water content is evaporated without reducing their nutritive value (1).

These apricots are energy-dense. A cup of dried apricot halves contains around 313 calories (2). They also are rich in potassium, fiber, iron, and vitamins A, C, and E.

Their fiber content could have a role to play in treating constipation. The fruits are also good sources of lutein and zeaxanthin, two antioxidants that are known to boost eye health. They may also have beneficial effects on diabetes and inflammation. In this post, we will elaborate on the health benefits of dried apricots.

What Are The Benefits Of Having Dried Apricots?

Dried apricots are rich in important nutrients, including fiber, potassium, iron, and vitamin C. Some research shows that they may be of help during pregnancy. If consumed in moderation, dried apricots, like most dried fruits, may also help supplement your weight loss efforts.

1. Are Rich In Nutrients

Dried apricots are rich in vital nutrients. They are replete with potassium, fiber, and several other nutrients.

A hundred grams of dried apricots (or about 30 dried apricot halves) contains the following (2):

  • 241 calories
  • 4 g of protein
  • 5 g of fat
  • 63 g of carbohydrates
  • 3 g of fiber
  • 1160 mg of potassium
  • 55 mg of calcium
  • 3 mg of iron
  • 32 mg of magnesium
  • 71 mg of phosphorus
  • 2 mcg of selenium
  • 180 mcg of vitamin A
  • 1 mg of vitamin C
  • 10 mcg of folate

Apricots of different cultivars contain varying amounts of polyphenolic compounds. These commonly contain gallic acid, rutin, epicatechin, ferulic acid, p-coumaric acid, catechin, procyanidins, caffeic acid, epigallocatechin, and chlorogenic acid (3).

2. May Help With Weight Loss When Taken In Moderation

As discussed, dried apricots are high in calories. But they also contain fiber, and consuming them in moderation may help with your weight loss plans.

Six dried apricots (40 grams) contain about 10 grams of total fiber (4).

In a cross-sectional study, a lower intake of fresh whole and dried fruits was associated with a higher BMI in subjects. Some research also suggests that both fresh and dried fruits can help reduce hunger, increase meal satisfaction, and decrease energy intake when taken as snacks or along with meals (4).

Dried apricots are healthy, and their high fiber content may complement your weight loss diet. But there is no research linking dried apricots directly to weight loss. Hence, practice moderation and consult a registered dietitian.

3. May Be Beneficial During Pregnancy

Apricots contain iron that may help improve blood health.

A woman’s blood volume increases by 50 percent during pregnancy. This means she would need more iron in her diet. Dried apricots are a good source of iron and may help in this regard (5).

Pregnancy and lactation may cause metabolic changes in your body. Too little exercise or an unbalanced diet can often lead to constipation. Drinking enough water and consuming fiber-rich foods, like dried apricots, may relieve digestive issues (6).

4. May Help Treat Anemia

The iron in apricots could help in the treatment of anemia.

In anemia, your blood lacks an adequate supply of healthy red blood cells (RBCs). This occurs due to a deficiency of hemoglobin (the oxygen-carrying molecule in the blood). Hemoglobin shortage occurs due to iron deficiency (7).

Severe blood loss, chronic bleeding in the stomach, and chronic inflammation may also cause anemia. Pregnant and menstruating women are at a higher risk of anemia (8).

Consuming iron-rich foods is the best way to reverse anemia. Dried apricots are very good sources of iron. Also, the vitamin C they contain further enhances iron absorption (9).

However, you may not be able to meet your daily iron intake through dried apricots alone. A cup of dried apricot halves contains about 3.5 milligrams of iron (2). You may have to consume 10 such cups to meet your daily iron intake. Hence, we suggest you also include other sources of iron in your diet, like spinach, lentils, and beans.

5. May Help Relieve Constipation

The fiber in dried apricots may play a role here.

Dietary fiber increases stool bulk and accelerates its movement through the colon (10).

When fiber is fermented in the intestine, it produces short-chain fatty acids (butyrate, propionate, acetate, etc.). These alter the gut microbiome (microorganisms) by decreasing the luminal pH. This further improves stool consistency, quantity, and mobility, thereby treating constipation (10).

Dried apricots contain fiber and can aid in constipation treatment (11).

6. May Aid Diabetes Treatment

Dried fruits, like apricots, have a low glycemic index. As per studies, they would not increase blood glucose levels excessively (12).

Moderate amounts of fructose from dried fruits (including dried apricots) may also help control postprandial glucose levels (12).

Dried apricots were also found to have beneficial effects on insulin levels (13).

7. May Promote Eye Health

The lutein and zeaxanthin in dried apricots may contribute to eye health. These nutrients function as blue light filters and protect the ophthalmic tissues from phototoxic damage (14). They may also lower the risk of cataracts (14).

8. May Improve Bone Mineral Density

Low bone mineral density is common in aging and post-menopausal women. It is the leading cause of osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, and other similar bone disorders (15). The boron in dried apricots may help improve bone mineral density.

In studies, postmenopausal women who took 3 to 4 mg of boron a day for a year showed an improvement in bone mineral density (15).

9. May Protect Your Skin From Damage And Aging Effects

Apricots contain beta-carotene, which gets converted to vitamin A in your body. Dried apricots also naturally contain a ton of vitamin A (retinol). This vitamin plays a role in skin health (16).

As is the case with any other food, there is a limit to the number of dried apricots you can eat in a day.

How Many Dried Apricots Can You Eat In A Day?

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, we need to consume about 1 to 2 cups of fruit every day. Those who are more active may need more (17).

When it comes to dried fruits, half a cup of them counts as a cup of fruit (17). Though there is no information about the dosage of dried apricots, you may have a cup of them in a day.

There is less information on the side effects of dried apricots. The fruit is naturally healthy in normal food amounts. However, you should be careful while purchasing dried apricots (or any dried fruit) from the market.

Dried fruits that are improperly stored may be contaminated by toxins and other fungi (18), (19).

Certain dried fruits in the market are also preserved using sulfur dioxide, which may trigger asthma in susceptible individuals (20).

Conclusion

Dried apricots are replete with several essential nutrients. They can be an excellent healthful snack. But as they are calorie-dense, we suggest you limit their portion sizes. A cup of dried apricots (about seven or eight) a day should suffice.

When you purchase dried apricots from the market, ensure you read the nutrition labels and double-check the manufactured dates.

Expert’s Answers For Readers’ Questions

Can eating dried apricots give you gas?

There is limited information available. Dried apricots are high in fiber, and studies show that a sudden intake of high fiber may lead to gas (21).

Should you wash dried apricots?

Unless the package says they are ready to eat, you should wash dried apricots. Once you wash them, allow them to dry before storing them in the refrigerator.

How can you enjoy dried apricots?

You can eat them as they are as an evening snack. You may also add them to your fruit salad or smoothie. You can also sprinkle your ice cream with pieces of dried apricots. Dried apricots also taste well when you simply dip them in your favorite cheese and munch (gouda cheese pairs well with dried apricots).

Are dried apricots anti-inflammatory?

Dried fruits, in general, have some anti-inflammatory benefits. However, there is no direct research stating the anti-inflammatory effects of dried apricots.

21 sources

Stylecraze has strict sourcing guidelines and relies on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical associations. We avoid using tertiary references. You can learn more about how we ensure our content is accurate and current by reading our editorial policy.

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Ravi Teja Tadimalla

Ravi Teja Tadimalla is an editor and a published author. He graduated from SRM University, Chennai, and has been in the digital media field for over six years. He has a Professional Certificate in Food, Nutrition & Research from Wageningen University. He considers himself a sculptor born to chip away at content and reveal its dormant splendor. He started his career as a research writer, primarily focusing on health and wellness, and has over 250 articles to his credit. Ravi believes in the great possibilities of abundant health with natural foods and organic supplements. Reading and theater are his other interests.
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