Have you ever stopped to consider the health benefits of pumpkin?
As the days become shorter and the temperatures drop, it becomes time to enjoy some of the many dishes prepared from the golden orange gourd we know as the pumpkin.
From pumpkin soup to pumpkin pie, pumpkins are a tasty and versatile fruit that’s sure to satisfy the whole family.
The word pumpkin is derived from Greek term for large melon and it is indeed a large fruit. Some species of pumpkin are capable of reaching over eighty-five pounds in weight.
When you enjoy a big bowl of fresh pumpkin, you don’t have to feel guilty. A full cup of pumpkin cut into cubes has low fat. This makes it a naturally sweet and tasty treat if you happen to be watching your calorie intake. Here are given below Surprising Health Benefit of Pumpkin.
Pumpkin Nutritional Values
Raw pumpkin contains only 15 calories per 1/2 cup. It is high in Vitamin C and beta carotene and low in carbohydrates and calories with zero cholesterol
Prepared pumpkin for pie isn’t as healthy as a raw pumpkin but still not bad. One slice of pie (without crust) has include:
- 316 calories,
- 41 grams of carbs,
- 65 mg of cholesterol,
- 5 g of fat,
- 349 mg of sodium.
It is super high in beta carotene at 7366 mg. Pumpkin has good levels of calcium, potassium, and vitamin A.
Pumpkin seeds have 373 calories per 1/2 cup. They are a good source of
- Copper, and
They are also a good source of protein and fiber. They are a little high in fat but relatively low in carbohydrates with zero cholesterol.
Read More: Further Pumpkin Nutritional information
What are the Health Benefits of Pumpkin?
The health benefits of pumpkin and pumpkin seeds are numerous. It has several beneficial nutrients with properties. These can help maintain vital bodily functions and treat many ailments.
1. Healthy Bone
Pumpkin seeds provide carotenoids, zinc, and omega-3 fats, which are believed to be beneficial to the male prostate.
The zinc property in pumpkin seeds aids bone mineral density.
It is orange just because of the lutein, alpha-carotene, and beta-carotene, which convert to vitamin A in the body. Beta-carotene is an antioxidant that helps against free radicals.
According to the research data, the seed oil has anti-inflammatory properties. It reduces the pain of arthritis without negative side-effects.
2. Lower Cholesterol
Pumpkin Seeds contain phytosterols are compounds found in plants that are believed to lower cholesterol, strengthen the immune response, and lower the risk of some cancers.
Studies show that pistachios and sunflower seeds are rich in phytosterols (270-289 mg/3.5 ounces) followed by pumpkin seeds (265 mg/3.5 ounces).
It helps kidney and gallbladder illnesses.
They also help remove tapeworm and roundworm from our intestines when we are infested.
3. Boost Immune System
Have you ever surprised what gives pumpkin its brilliant orange color? The credit can be given to the beta-carotenes which are found in such abundance in this fruit. Beta-carotenes are antioxidants which are converted to vitamin A in the body. They are thought to increase the immune system and help to repair free radical damage to cells.
Beta-carotenes are being studied to determine what role they play in the prevention of various disease states. These healthy, bright orange pigments are also found in carrots. This is one reason your mom always pushed you to eat your carrots. She would have wanted you to eat pumpkin too.
4. Normalize Blood Pressure
Pumpkin is a rich source of vitamin C and potassium which may help to prevent heart disease and normalize blood pressure.
Pumpkin can be a good substitute for higher-calorie desserts when served warm with a sprinkling of cinnamon and a little sugar-free pancake syrup.
Of course, if you turn it into pumpkin pie, you’ll boost the calories unless you use low fat, sugar-free ingredients. Even standard pumpkin pie is lower in calories than most pies and desserts.
5. Prevent Prostate
A study carried out in Budapest, Hungary showed that patients with a benign enlarged prostate (BPH) who were treated with pumpkin seed oil extract had a stronger urine flow and a reduction in the frequency of nighttime urination.
It’s thought that pumpkin seed oil may help to prevent prostate enlargement by blocking testosterone, the male hormone that can trigger prostate growth.
Ways to Eat Pumpkin
Pumpkin pie is popular in American and becoming common in France. Other desserts include muffins, cookies, cakes, and more.
Pumpkin can be eaten raw.
The whole pumpkin can be baked by putting holes in it and baking until the skin caramelized. Then, it can be cut and peeled.
It can be boiled or steamed for pumpkin purees, soups, and juices.
It can be sautéed as a side dish.
Pumpkin seeds have a chewy texture and a sweet & nutty flavor. While roasted pumpkins seeds are mostly seen as a Halloween treat, they can be eaten throughout the year.
Pumpkins seeds can be roasted as a snack. You can buy pumpkin seeds in stores or prepared yourself. You remove the seeds from the pumpkin, wipe them off, and let them dry out. Then bake them in a single layer in a little oil on a pan at 160-170ºF for twenty minutes. Then lightly salt them.
Pumpkins seeds can be added to sautéed vegetables, salads, salad dressing, hot or cold cereal, cookies, and even in burgers.
Pumpkin lasts the longest when it is uncut and stored in a cool and dry area with plenty of air circulation. They must be handled carefully because bruising causes it to spoil.
Uncut, they can be stored for up to three months. Once cut, they should be eaten within one week and stored in a plastic bag and refrigerated.
You can store pumpkin seeds in an airtight container in the refrigerator. They can store for several months, but they lose their peak after one to two months.