Pumpkin seeds are actually nutritional powerhouses with various nutrients that range from manganese and magnesium to zinc, copper, and protein.
These seeds are also packed with plant compounds called free-radical scavenging antioxidants and phytosterols that could give your health an additional boost.
As they are rich in fiber, they can help increase your intake of fiber, which helps you reach the perfect amount of 50 g per 1,000 calories consumed.
What’s more, as pumpkin seeds do not require refrigeration and are highly portable, they make a fantastic snack to keep with you whenever you are on the go. You can also use them as a quick snack at your home.
Health Benefits of Pumpkin Seeds:
The consumption of pumpkin seeds can have a positive impact on your immune system, heart, and liver. It can also help regulate diabetes, alleviate the symptoms of menopause in women, and improve prostate health in men.
A study conducted in Spain showed that cucurbitacins found in pumpkin seeds could help kill cancer cells.
Cucurbitacins have powerful anti-inflammatory properties that may help in the treatment of many early stage cancers. A study done in Germany suggested that the consumption of pumpkin seeds could benefit women in menopause because it could decrease their likelihood of breast cancer. Researchers concluded that the regular pumpkin seed consumption decreased the risk of breast cancer by a whopping 23 percent.
That’s not all, raw pumpkin seeds are packed with beneficial compounds that can improve your physical and mental health.
Pumpkin seeds are also abundant in selenium, phosphorus, iron, calcium, potassium, copper, manganese, magnesium, and many other minerals. They are also high in bioavailable protein and fiber that can improve your digestion.
Zinc and magnesium lead to better nutrient absorption. That’s why pumpkin seeds should be consumed by those suffering from nutrient deficiencies. You should also introduce pumpkin seeds to your daily diet in order to reduce your blood sugar, enhance your sleep, boost your immune system, improve your vision and skin complexion.
The high amount of zinc and phytosterols, particularly beta-sitosterol found in the seeds make them a possible preventive measure against abnormal prostate cancer cell development. They also have powerful anti-inflammatory properties that help protect against oxidative damage, thus promoting DNA repair and preventing the growth of cancer in the early stages of the disease.
Plus, pumpkin seed oil has been found to help in the treatment of prostate-related health issues. The oil abounds in antioxidants and phytochemicals that could prevent free radical damage as well as block cancer cell growth.
How to Include Pumpkin Seeds or Pumpkin Seed Oil in Your Diet:
It is advisable to have a bottle of cold-pressed pumpkin seed oil in your kitchen. In addition, you can use it in your meals and salads for an additional healthy kick. Avoid heating the oil since high temperatures can interfere with the bioavailability of its nutrients.
Also, you should consume raw pumpkin seeds for maximum benefits. You can also slightly roast them and add them to your favorite salads and meals.
- Murray, Michael. ˮEncyclopedia of Healing Foodsˮ;
- Mateljan, George. ˮThe World’s Healthiest Foods: Essential Guide for the Healthiest Way of Eatingˮ;