Nutritional Value of Pumpkins and Squash

 
 
 
 

Nutritional Value of Pumpkins and Squash

The arrival of fall means a change of the menu, and with that comes a variety of recipes including classic fall flavors such as pumpkin and squash. As tasty as these are, they also have great nutritional value that people may be unaware of. Pumpkins happen to be low in Saturated Fat, and very low in Cholesterol and Sodium. They are also a good source of Vitamin E (Alpha Tocopherol), Thiamin, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Folate, Iron, Magnesium and Phosphorus, and a very good source of Dietary Fiber, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Riboflavin, Potassium, Copper and Manganese. They have much more to add than just taste! Pumpkin is an often overlooked good source of fiber, but 3 grams per one-cup serving and only 49 calories, it can keep you feeling full for longer on fewer calories. Pumpkin seeds have also been shown to reduce cholesterol. They have also been linked to fighting off cancers and food sources of beta-carotene which is healthier than taking a supplement. Not only that, but pumpkins are also good for the skin, keeping your skin wrinkle-free for longer! Pumpkin seeds are rich in the amino acid tryptophan, the famed ingredient in turkey that many think brings on the need for that post-Thanksgiving feast snooze. While experts agree that it’s likely the overeating rather than the tryptophan lulling you to sleep, the amino acid is important in the production of serotonin, one of the major players when it comes to our mood, WebMD reports. A handful of roasted pumpkin seeds may help your outlook improve. While there is some debate as to how much Vitamin C actually helps the immune system, what’s not up for debate is that pumpkins are a good source of it, with 11 milligrams of Vitamin C in each pumpkin. With so many health benefits, now is the perfect time to start working pumpkin into your diet.