Pumpkins: they are not just for carving anymore! One of my favorite things about Fall is pumpkins. I love decorating them, but eating them ranks pretty high on my list of fall musts. This is the time of year where you see pumpkin flavored things everywhere. Let me give you some reasons why you should be eating this vibrant fruit.
- High Fiber-Low Cal. One cup of pumpkin has 5 grams of fiber and only 30 calories! Thus, eating pumpkin will work wonders for your digestion while making you feel full faster. Studies also link diets high in dietary fiber to increased weight loss.
- Disease Fighting. It’s rich orange color tells you that pumpkin is high in carotenoids. Carotenoids are known to protect you from cancers, heart disease, lower your cholesterol, and even diminish signs of aging.
- Electrolytes. Pumpkin actually contains more potassium than a banana (560 mg compared to 420 mg). So, snacking on some pumpkin after a workout can be a great electrolyte booster!
- Vision Improver. Pumpkin contains large amounts of Vitamin A and Zeaxanthin which enhance your eye health. One serving of pumpkin will provide you with twice your daily needs for vitamin A.
- Mood Booster. Pumpkin seeds contain high amounts of tryptophan, the amino acid necessary for serotonin production. Thus, snacking on pumpkin seeds will keep you happy for the holidays.
- Immunity. The large amounts of carotenoids, zinc, and vitamin C found in pumpkin will improve your immune system and reduce your chances of getting sick.
- Detox. Pumpkins are natural diuretics, which aid in flushing out toxins from the body, keeping you feeling refreshed and snazzy.
Fun Fact of the day: Pumpkins were once used for removing freckles and curing snake bites. Hmm….
Try avoiding pumpkin sweets. Pureed pumpkin can be added to almost any of your favorite recipes. Try roasting pumpkin with some of your favorite vegetables, Add pumpkin cubes to soups and chili, Toss pumpkin seeds into your salads, or even try pumpkin juice and smoothies!
Fights diseases, aids in weight loss, and boosts mood? No wonder that pumpkin has a huge grin on its face!