Due to harsh desert conditions, the traditional food of the United Arab Emirates uses a lot of meat, grain, and dairy. Vegetables are easy to grow in some areas, and are strongly featured in the diet.Seafood has been the mainstay of the Emirati diet for centuries. The United Arab Emirates cuisine is a reflection of a great Arabian heritage and vast exposure to civilizations over time. Popular beverages are coffee and tea, which can be supplemented with cardamom, saffron, or mint to give it a distinct flavor.At the close of the meal, it is usual to be served with a red tea infused with mint, which aids the digestion. Other traditions to the meal include a welcome with dates and gahwah (Arabic coffee), which are offered on arrival and are kept available through the guests visit.