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5 Health Benefits of Pumpkin

Did you know that the pumpkin you carve into a Jack-O-Lantern for Halloween or bake into a pie at Thanksgiving is filled with many year round health benefits?  You may want to consider filling your freezer with this seasonal vegetable after reading this article!

 

Five Health Benefits Of Pumpkins!

 

1.  Loaded With

 

   

Antioxidants help protect the cells in your body from damage, either due to the natural aging process or due to smoking, pollution and exposure to chemicals.  They help lower the risk of developing cancer and other chronic diseases.  Pumpkins are not alone in providing these antioxidants.  Other orange vegetables such as carrots, butternut squash and sweet potatoes are packed with antioxidants and are equally delicious!

 

2.    Improved Eyesight

 

You may have heard that eating carrots strengthens your vision, which is true.  It's the high level in carotenoids found in orange coloured veggies that's responsible for this health benefit.  Carotenoids are converted into Vitamin A which is essential for optimal vision particularly night vision. One cup of pumpkin contains 200% of the daily recommended intake of Vitamin A!

 

3.  Great For Weight Loss

 

Pumpkin has less than 50 calories per cup and 3 grams of fibre!    The fibre helps you feel full, normalizes the bowel and helps to control blood glucose levels.  All of which are beneficial for losing or maintaining weight.

 

 

4.  Boost Your Mood

 

Don't throw out the pumpkin seeds!  Pumpkin seeds are rich in the amino acid tryptophan.  You may have heard of the sleep inducing effect of eating too much Thanksgiving turkey due to the tryptophan in the meat. Tryptophan plays an important role in the production of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that regulates mood.  Bottom line, pumpkin seeds can make you feel happier and improve your quality of sleep.

 

5.  Lower Your Cholesterol

 

Pumpkin seeds have a powerful cholesterol lowering effect. The seeds are rich in a plant based chemical called phytosterol which can lower LDL or "bad" cholesterol levels.  They do this by blocking the absorption of cholesterol from your diet.  It's best to eat them raw for maximum benefit.

 

Pumpkins are a delicious and affordable way to boost your health this Fall.  Be sure to cook extra and store it in you freezer to benefit year round!

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