The variety of mouthwatering dishes you can make with pumpkin is endless. From raviolis, pies and breads to risottos and beers, there are just so many things that can be made using pumpkin as the main ingredient. You can also eat oven roasted pumpkin as a delicious desert. Pumpkins are a good source of Vitamin A, fiber and many other vitamins and minerals. It is not just tasty when included in the meals, but it also packs a healthy punch. Here is a glance at the 7 impressive health benefits of pumpkin.
1. Improves vision
One cup of cooked pumpkin provides more than 200% of the recommended daily intake of Vitamin A and as suggested by health professionals, Vitamin A is vital for eyesight protection.
2. Aids in weight loss
Have you been struggling to get rid of the extra weight? Now you can easily lose weight and get in shape by incorporating pumpkin in your diet. Pumpkin contains fiber which not only helps in digestion, but also helps you feel fuller for longer. Pumpkin also contains fewer calories making it easy to achieve your weight loss goals.
3. Promotes heart health
The seeds of pumpkin contain phytosterols which helps reduce bad cholesterol in the body. Pumpkin seeds are rich in magnesium which is essential for a number of physiological functions such as creation of ATP, synthesis of DNA and RNA, and pumping of the heart. Magnesium is also beneficial for maintaining blood pressure which helps prevent cardiac arrest and heart attacks.
4. Reduces risk of cancer
Juts like carrots, butternut squash and sweet potato, pumpkins contain beta carotene which is an antioxidant that plays a crucial role in the prevention of cancer. According to a number of studies, foods that contain beta carotene are better than supplements and this is a great reason to start including pumpkin in your diet. In addition, the plant sterols contained in the seeds may also help fight certain cancers.
5. Hair and skin benefits
The benefits of pumpkin juice for the hair and skin cannot be ignored. In fact, pumpkin juice is a great substitute for carbonated drinks and with its vitamin and mineral content, it can promote hair growth and give you beautiful skin. Pumpkin also has healing properties and therefore can be used as an effective treatment for burns, insect bites and inflammation. Due to its high nutritional value, pumpkin is often used in hydrating creams and anti-aging products. A mixture of cooked pumpkin, honey, yogurt and coconut oil can be used as a conditioner to get rid of dry and damaged hair.
6. Boosts immunity
Pumpkins are a good source of Vitamin C which can help boost your immunity and protect your body from diseases and illnesses.
7. Boosts your mood
Pumpkin seeds are an excellent source of tryptophan which is an amino acid responsible for the production of serotonin that plays a major role in boosting your mood. Serotonin can also help you get rid of stress and depression. Consuming just about half cup of pumpkin seeds can give you the required mood boosting and relaxation dose. You can add pumpkin seeds to cereals, salads, toast them or eat them plain.