The pumpkin is ubiquitous with fall and Thanksgiving. Most of us associate pumpkin with pie, which is delicious. However, pumpkin has numerous health benefits and can be used in so many ways. We should not limit it to pie once a year!
Pumpkin is a nutritonal powerhouse. One cup provides 200% RDA for beta-carotene. Beta-carotene converts to vitamin A in which helps eyesight and protects against cancer. Pumpkin is loaded with fiber and is low in calories, both good for weight loss. This orange superfood boosts the immune system with its high vitamin C content. Carotenoids in pumpkin neutralize free radicals, fending off cancer and other disease. Pumpkin is high in potassium,, higher than bananas! Potassium is an important mineral for replacing electrolytes in the body. Pumpkin seeds offer a healthy dose of zinc and magnesium.
I use pumpkin all year round. When it is in season I roast and puree the flesh. When it is not in season it is easily found in your grocery aisles.( I prefer the tetra pack organic pumpkin. ) You can also use canned ( make sure you buy BPA free cans). Add a cup of pumpkin puree to protein shakes with cinnamon, stevia, and pumpkin pie spice for a refreshing boost after a workout. Add some pumpkin and cinnamon to a pancake recipe for a tasty immune boosting breakfast . Mix pumpkin puree with greek yogurt or kefir for a treat that wll boost your gut flora. There are recipes for pumpkin bread , muffins, etc. Pumpkin can be sweet or savory. I always enjoy the sweet — I love pumpkin pie and enjoy the flavor of cinnamon and pie spices in many recipes. There are so many ways to enjoy this squash. What will you enjoy pumpkin in?
Rethink the pumpkin …. not just for Thanksgiving anymore!!