Autumn is an excellent time to enjoy pumpkin, a digestive vegetable full of beneficial properties for our body. A botanical relative of melon, zucchini, watermelon, and cucumber, the pumpkin plant is native to the American continent, and its fruits provide us with essential vitamins and minerals without providing hardly any calories. Therefore, the WHO recommends its consumption.
There are endless pumpkins of different colors and sizes (the American, the Spanish green, the violin, the crooked neck …). Most of the pieces weigh from 2 to 8 kilos, but giant pumpkins can reach 600 kilos. Despite such diversity, they all share a sweet pulp, a cavity full of seeds (a small nutritional treasure since they are rich in zinc and magnesium, among other minerals), and a hard skin that prolongs its conservation.
Pumpkin is very versatile and lends itself to many preparations and cooking. With it we can prepare soups, creams, purees, garnishes, custards, cakes, jams … and we can cook it in the oven, boiled, sautéed, sautéed, au gratin … Of course, to preserve all its nutrients, it is not advisable to overcook the pumpkin, maximum about 20 minutes.
Properties and benefits
Strengthen our defenses
It keeps the immune system in good condition and prevents flu and colds.
Its combination of minerals and vitamins makes pumpkin a powerful antioxidant.
Take care of the cardiovascular system.
High blood pressure, prevention of angina pectoris, maintenance of adequate cholesterol level.
Suitable for the digestive system
Gentle for our digestive system, pumpkin is indicated to combat gastritis, gastroduodenal ulcer, and constipation.
Benefits our eye health
The composition of the pumpkin helps prevent cataracts, photophobia, and night blindness.
Take care of the urinary system and kidneys.
Pumpkin prevents cystitis, kidney stones, fluid retention, and kidney failure.
Calories 28 kcal.
Proteins 1.13 g.
Carbohydrates 4.59 g.
Fiber 2.16 g.
Total fat 0.13 g.
Water 92 g.
Calcium 22 mg.
Iron 0.80 mg.
Iodine 1.40 mg.
Magnesium 8 mg.
Zinc 0.20 g.
Sodium 3.10 mg.
Potassium 304 mg.
Vitamin B2 Riboflavin 0.07 mg.
Vitamin B6 Pyridoxine 0.11 mg.
Folic Acid 336 mg.
Vitamin C 12 mg.
When you think of pumpkins, what comes to mind? Pumpkin lamps? Pumpkin pie? Charlie Brown? Lattes with a hint of pumpkin?
Well, these orange fruits go beyond Halloween and are sugary (but delicious!) Desserts and drinks. Pumpkins have numerous health benefits, and none of them take center stage in the more frequent fall sales.
Do you have doubts about getting the pumpkin out of the cake (or the cup)? These health benefits could change your mind:
Pumpkins are rich in fiber, which slows down the rate of digestion. “Pumpkins keep you are feeling full longer,” says Caroline Kaufman, who has a master’s of science, is a professional nutritionist and dietitian, and an upwave diet and nutrition expert. “There are seven grams of fiber in a cup of canned pumpkin. That’s more fiber than you would get in two slices of whole wheat bread.”
Pumpkin might fill you up, but it’s also a low-calorie superstar. Canned squash is almost 90% water, so in addition to helping you stay hydrated, it has less than 50 calories per serving, “says Kaufman.
The solid orange color of pumpkins comes from their wealth of beta-carotene, which is converted to vitamin A in the body. Vitamin A is essential for healthy eyes, and it helps the retina absorb and process light. A single cup of pumpkin contains more than 200% of the recommended daily intake of vitamin A for most people, making it a terrific option for optical health.
Pumpkin also contains lutein and zeaxanthin, two antioxidants believed to help prevent cataracts and may even slow the development of macular degeneration.
Are you looking for a way to protect yourself from disease and improve your immune system? Try the pumpkin. The large amount of vitamin A that the fruit provides helps your body fight infections, viruses, and infectious diseases. Pumpkin oil even helps fight various infections caused by bacteria and fungi. Plus, pumpkin has nearly 20% of the RDA for vitamin C, which may help you recover from colds more quickly.
Sure, eating pumpkins might help you look younger (the beta-carotene in squash protects us from the sun’s UV rays that cause wrinkles), but the pulp also makes a great all-natural face mask that exfoliates and softens. All you need is a quarter cup of pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie), an egg, a tablespoon of honey, and a tablespoon of milk. Mix the ingredients, apply them, wait about 20 minutes and wash with warm water.
Lower risk of cancer
Beta-carotene is suitable for your eyes and skin, but do you know what other benefits it has? Fight cancer. Research shows that people who eat a diet high in beta-carotene may have a lower risk of certain types of cancer, including prostate cancer and lung cancer.
Vitamins A and C are “a kind of defense squad for cells,” says Kaufman. Both are antioxidants, and they act as shields for your cells against cancer-causing free radicals. “
Can pumpkin helps treat diabetes?
In scientific experiments, pumpkin has been shown to lower blood glucose levels, improve glucose tolerance, and increase the body’s amount of insulin. Other tests need to be done before we can say the benefits of pumpkin for people with diabetes, but if you have diabetes, eating pumpkin certainly won’t hurt.
It helps to lose weight.
Its water and fiber content makes the pumpkin have satiating and moisturizing effects. Together with the fact that it is low in calories, this fruit is an ideal ally for people following a diet.
Protect the heart
The potassium, fiber, and vitamin C found in pumpkin help stabilize blood pressure; In addition, a study published in Nutrition, Metabolism, and Cardiovascular Diseases (NMCD), indicated that taking potassium is essential for people with hypertension because together with a reduction in salt consumption it can improve the disease. Potassium also reduces stroke risk, protects muscles from deterioration, and preserves bone and dental health.