With Halloween right around the corner I am obsessing over everything pumpkin right now! I went to Trader Joe’s a couple of days ago and picked up a ton of pumpkin goodies. Pumpkin butter, pumpkin spice latte mix and a couple of cute mini pumpkins just for decoration. I couldn’t resist researching to see what the health benefits of pumpkin are, and here is what I found.
Pumpkin is low in fat and calories and rich in disease fighting nutrients such as:
- Alpha-carotene: healthy vision & proper immune function, can also slow aging.
- Beta-carotene: can reverse skin damage & act as an anti-inflammatory.
- Fiber: one-half cup serving contains 5 grams of fiber. Fiber helps reduce bad cholesterol levels, protects the body against heart disease, control blood sugar levels, promote healthy digestion, and plays a role in weight loss.
- Vitamin C: boost immunity, reduces risk of high blood pressure and heart disease and regulates cholesterol levels.
- Vitamin E: promotes healthy skin and protecting from sun damage.
- Potassium: aids in balancing fluid levels in the body, promotes strong bones, necessary for energy production and helps control blood pressure.
- Magnesium: aids the body in hundreds of functions, including promoting a healthy immune system, contributing to bone strength and normalizing heart function.
Pumpkin seeds also contain essential vitamins and minerals and are a good source of vitamin E, iron, magnesium, potassium, zinc and are excellent plant-based source of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids.
Did you also know that canned pumpkin is also just as nutritious as fresh? This is all awesome news to me, and I am so ready to start making pumpkin soups, muffins, breads, smoothies as well as eating pumpkin seeds alone.
I came across a couple of recipes that I wanted to share. They all look amazing, but here are my favs: (click on the link to see the recipe)
- Pumpkin protein bars
- Skinny Taste pumpkin nut muffins
- Pumpkin smoothie
- Low Fat pumpkin spice chocolate chip cookies
- Skinny pumpkin overnight oats in a jar
- Pumpkin spice oatmeal pecan cookies
Speaking of Halloween, are you all planning on getting into the spirit and dressing up in costume? If so, please share! Have a great week everyone!