Pumpkin fruit is one of the widely grown vegetables incredibly rich in vital antioxidants and vitamins. Pumpkin is a type of winter squash that belongs to the Cucurbitaceous family. While commonly viewed as a vegetable, pumpkin is scientifically a fruit, as it contains seeds. That said, it’s nutritionally more similar to vegetables than fruits. Pumpkin has an impressive nutrient profile. Besides being packed with vitamins and minerals, pumpkin is also relatively low in calories, as its 94% water. Eating only a small amount of them can provide you with a substantial quantity of healthy fats, magnesium and zinc.
It is one of the most popular field crops cultivated around the world, including in the USA at commercial scale for its fruit and seeds. Pumpkins, in general, feature orange or yellow exterior skin color. However, some varieties can exhibit dark to pale green, brown, white, red and gray. It’s also very high in beta-carotene, a carotenoid that your body turns into vitamin A. Beyond its delicious taste, pumpkin is nutritious and linked to many health benefits. Pumpkins are great for your eyes, as just 100 g can meet 170% of your daily vitamin A requirement.
Pumpkin seeds and seed oil also pack many other nutrients and plant compounds that have been shown to provide health benefits.A 100 g serving has 91 g water, just 7 g carbs, 0.1 g fat and just 26 calories. A 100 g serving can meet a phenomenal 170% of your daily requirement of vitamin A.
Health Benefits of Pumpkin:
Pumpkin benefits can be derived from its leaves, fleshy shell, seeds, and the flowers. Pumpkins are rich in vitamins, pantothenic acid, folate, antioxidants, carbohydrates, dietary fiber and minerals such as calcium, iron, potassium, sodium and zinc
- Pumpkin is a storehouse of many antioxidant vitamins such as vitamin-A, vitamin-C and vitamin-E.
- Pumpkin seeds are highly nutritious and packed with powerful antioxidants.
- The fruit has an impressive 91% water content to keep you hydrated and its low in calories as well – all tick marks for weight loss.
- The vegetable is one of the food items recommended by dieticians in cholesterol controlling and weight reduction programs.
- From fighting against infections to keeping your bones strong, vitamin A has a truckload of responsibilities. And this particular vitamin is extremely high in pumpkin.
- Pumpkins have been found to decrease inflammation.
- pumpkin seed extract daily improved urinary function.
- It is also an essential vitamin for good eyesight. Research studies suggest that natural foods rich in vitamin-A may help the human body protect against lung and oral cavity cancers.
- Fiber slows the rate of sugar absorption into the blood, as well as promoting regular bowel movements and smooth digestion
- One study found out vitamin C can help reduce the severity of a cold. Pumpkins are a rich source of vitamin C.
- Pumpkins are also great sources of folic acid, manganese, and riboflavin – all essential for a healthy immune system.
- It may offer protection from age-related macular disease (ARMD) in the older adults.
- It’s thought that the high levels of antioxidants in pumpkins seeds are partly responsible for their positive effects on health.
- The chemical components of pumpkins reduce the risk of cataracts and development of other optical issues.
- There are also links between eating pumpkin seeds and raising testosterone levels and increased sexual desire.
- Healthy magnesium levels are important for your blood pressure, blood sugar levels, as well as heart and bone health.
- Pumpkin seeds indeed are an excellent source of dietary fiber and monounsaturated fatty acids, which are good for heart health.
- Pumpkin seed oil reduced inflammation with arthritis without side effects.
- Magnesium is another reason why you need to eat pumpkin. It’s a vital mineral for your heart.
- The seeds are an excellent source of health promoting amino acid tryptophan. Tryptophan converted into GABA in the brain.
- It has a good amount of fiber, Fiber is just what your digestion needs to make things a lot smoother and a heavy dose of fiber every day can help with weight loss.
- Eating pumpkins could help lower blood glucose levels and improve the production of insulin.
- Pumpkins help in countering substances that trigger production of kidney stones. Pumpkin seeds are used treat urinary problems and gastritis and are helpful in expelling roundworms and tapeworms.
- Pumpkins can work wonders for the skin as well. They help delay signs of aging (thank you, beta-carotene).
- Eating pumpkin works wonders for your mood. Pumpkin seeds have a high amount of tryptophan, a type of amino acid that is the building block of a mood-lifting neurotransmitter called serotonin.
- Tryptophan produces serotonin and this, in turn, relaxes and calms you, so you eventually fall asleep.
- Pumpkin seeds helped reduce the risk of bladder stones.
- Pumpkin seed oil reduced postmenopausal signs. This includes headaches, hot flashes and joint pains.
- Nutrients in pumpkin seeds may help keep your heart healthy by reducing blood pressure and increasing good cholesterol.
- This is especially important for people with diabetes, who may struggle to control their blood sugar levels.
- Beta carotene and other vitamins present in pumpkin help in regeneration of cells. The antioxidants help in revitalizing the body and skin and preventing free radical damage.
- Pumpkins and their seeds contain essential fatty acids that help maintain normal cell growth, keeping the skin and other tissues soft and supple.
- Dietary fiber helps in digestion and aids in prevention of heart diseases, cancer and low blood sugar levels
- Green pumpkins help abate cholesterol levels, fatigue and indigestion.
In fact, pumpkin seeds have been shown to improve heart health, blood sugar levels, fertility and sleep quality. They may even protect against certain types of cancer. Pumpkins are pretty versatile. You could make smoothies, desserts, energy bars, curries and a lot more. Some people use pumpkin seeds in baking, as an ingredient for sweet or savory bread and cakes. Pumpkin benefits can be derived from its leaves, fleshy shell, seeds and the flowers.