Pumpkin is a type of winter squash that belongs to the Cucurbitaceae family. It’s native to North America and particularly popular around Thanksgiving and Halloween.[Source]
In the US, pumpkin typically refers to Cucurbita pepo, an orange type of winter squash. In other regions, such as Australia, pumpkin may refer to any type of winter squash.
Here are 5 impressive nutrition and health benefits of pumpkin.
1. Highly Nutritious and Rich in Vitamin A
Pumpkin is high in vitamins and minerals while being low in calories. It’s also a great source of beta-carotene, a carotenoid that your body converts into vitamin A.
Besides being packed with vitamins and minerals, pumpkin is also relatively low in calories, as it’s 94% water. It’s also very high in beta-carotene, a carotenoid that your body turns into vitamin A.
2. High Antioxidant May Reduce Your Risk of Chronic Diseases
Pumpkin contains the antioxidants alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, beta-cryptoxanthin, and many others, which may protect your cells against damage by free radicals.
Test-tube and animal studies have shown that these antioxidants protect skin against sun damage and lower the risk of cancer, eye diseases and other conditions.
However, keep in mind that more human-based research is needed to make health recommendations.
3. Packs Vitamins That May Boost Immunity
Pumpkin is high in vitamins A and C, which can help boost your immune system. Its supply of vitamin E, iron and folate may strengthen your immunity as well.
Aside from the two vitamins mentioned above, pumpkin is also a good source of vitamin E, iron and folate — all of which have been shown to aid the immune system as well.
4. Nutrient Density and Low-Calorie May Promote Weight Loss
Pumpkin is packed with nutrients and yet has under 50 calories per cup (245 grams). This makes it a nutrient-dense food. It’s also a good source of fiber, which may suppress your appetite.
In fact, pumpkin clocks in at under 50 calories per cup (245 grams) and consists of about 94% of water.
What’s more, pumpkin is a good source of fiber, which can help curb your appetite.
5. Contains Compounds That Promote Healthy Skin
Pumpkin is high in beta-carotene, which acts as a natural sunblock. It also contains vitamins C and E, as well as lutein and zeaxanthin, which can help keep your skin strong and healthy.
Pumpkins are loaded with nutrients that are great for your skin. For one, it’s high in carotenoids like beta-carotene, which your body turns into vitamin A. Studies show that carotenoids like beta-carotene can act as a natural sunblock.
5 Best Pumpkin Recipes
Here are 5 best and popular pumpkin recipes for you.
This Pumpkin Pie Spice Granola makes a healthy and tasty breakfast bowl. Learn the recipe here.
Starbucks Pumpkin Bread is a favorite of my family. This Starbucks Copycat Pumpkin Bread is well spiced and soooo moist. Do you know how much a whole loaf of pumpkin bread would cost if you purchased it from Starbucks? I can show you how to make this yummy pumpkin bread.
The Pumpkin Spice Latte is a coffee drink made with a mix of traditional fall spice flavors (cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove), steamed milk, and espresso, topped with whipped cream and pumpkin pie spice.
Kids will love these yummy and fun Great Pumpkin Cookies! The cookies not only include pumpkin, but they also have oats and can be decorated with all sorts of goodies like chocolate chips, icing, and candies or enjoy them plain. Read more for the instruction.
These playful pumpkin sandwich cookies are sure to please kids of all ages. You just need 1 package Pillsbury™ Ready to Bake!™ pumpkin shaped sugar cookies, 1 container (1 lb) vanilla or chocolate creamy ready-to-spread frosting, Assorted candy sprinkles, as desired. Learn the recipe here.