How many times have you carved a pumpkin and just thrown the guts away? There are so many reasons to eat pumpkin for your health instead of just loading it with sugar and cream and turning it into a pie. If you love pumpkin pie like me I will re-post my tofu pumpkin pie that I make every season. For now, here are 5 reasons to eat your pumpkin and not just carve it:
1. Fiber: Pumpkin flesh is very high in fiber and low in calories. Add it to smoothies to treat GI problems like constipation or indigestion.
2. Get Glowing Skin: Pumpkin seeds are high in essential fatty acids (EFA’s). Also called pepitas, pumpkin seeds can be removed and roasted, then sprinkled over salads or added to a trail mix. The EFAs are important for healthy glowing skin among other great benefits.
3. Protein: One ounce of pepitas contains 7 grams of protein. Again, add them to salads, trail mix or salt them and eat them by themselves. You don’t always have to get your protein from animals.
4. See Better: The orange color of pumpkins is due to the high amount of carotenoids present. Carotenoids are bascially antioxidants that help squash free radical damage. Specifically, pumpkins are high in lutein and zeaxanthin which help protect the eyes against long term damage like cataracts.
5. Bones, Teeth and PMS: Pumpkins are high in magnesium which is great for bone ad teeth maintenance. Ladies – magnesium supplementation prior to PMS symptoms can help reduce the bloating, moodiness and cramping. Get your pumpkins quickly!
Next time you carve your pumpkin into a Jack-o-lantern and leave it in your doorway, picture it scaring away cancer, cataracts and PMS!
I will be posting more pumpkin recipes this month. Stay tuned…