Pumpkin seeds: Benefits, Nutrition & Diet Tips
Do you get sudden hunger pangs during the day but can’t find something healthy? Have you ever thought of trying Pumpkin Seeds as a snack? These seeds consist of several nutrients starting from magnesium and copper to protein and zinc, which are essential for a good immune system.
Pumpkin seeds are edible, flat, oval-shaped green seeds. Once removed from the flesh of a pumpkin, they can be rinsed and roasted with the addition of other flavors such as oils and spices to create a delicious, crunchy snack.
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Nutrition Facts of Pumpkin Seeds
According to research, a 28g or a 1-ounce serving of pumpkin seeds approximately consists of the following amount of nutrients:
RDI= Reference Daily Intake
- Calories: 151(mainly from fat and protein)
- Fiber: 1.7 grams
- Carbs: 5 grams
- Protein: 7 grams
- Fat: 13 grams (6 of which are omega-6s)
- Vitamin K: 18% of the RDI
- Phosphorus: 33% of the RDI
- Manganese: 42% of the RDI
- Magnesium: 37% of the RDI
- Iron: 23% of the RDI
- Zinc: 14% of the RDI
- Copper: 19% of the RDI
Here is how these nutrients in pumpkin seeds can help our overall health.
Benefits of Pumpkin seeds
Pumpkin seed benefits health in many ways
Promotes bone health
Pumpkin seeds are a great source of magnesium, which is essential for the formation of bones. Intake of a high amount of magnesium is associated with improved bone density and is known to help decrease the risk of osteoporosis in women after menopause.
Helps control diabetes
Reactive oxygen species (ROS) play a role in causing diabetes. Antioxidants in pumpkin seeds can help reduce this risk and protect against type 2 diabetes. According to studies, a 100-milligram increase in magnesium intake per day reduces the risk of developing type 2 diabetes by approximately 15%. A 100-gram serving of pumpkin seeds may consist of over 90 mg of magnesium.
Improves heart and liver function
Pumpkin seeds consist of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, antioxidants, and fiber. This combination of nutrients has benefits for both the heart and liver. The fiber in pumpkin seeds helps lower the level of cholesterols in the blood, thereby decreasing the risk of heart diseases. Pumpkin seeds are also full of magnesium. An intake of 365 milligrams of magnesium per day has shown an improvement in lipid profiles. According to research, scientists have found that there is a total of 265 milligrams of sterols in every 100 grams of pumpkin seed kernel. Plant sterols and phytosterols are known to help reduce LDL levels or bad cholesterol.
Aids in weight management
Pumpkin seeds, when consumed, keep the tummy full for an extended period of time, given its high fiber content. Since the stomach feels full, munching throughout the day reduces, while curbing hunger pangs. The seeds, in turn, help keep the weight in control.
Help treat insomnia
Pumpkin seeds are a rich source of an amino acid called tryptophan. The body converts tryptophan into serotonin, the “feel-good” or “relaxing” hormone, and melatonin, the “sleep hormone.” Therefore, consumption of pumpkin seeds before bed, along with some kind of carbohydrates like fruit, may be beneficial in providing your body with the tryptophan needed for melatonin production, thereby helping to treat chronic insomnia disorders.
Protects the skin
Squalene is an antioxidant in pumpkin seeds, that is quite similar to beta-carotene, also an antioxidant found in plants. Squalene is present throughout all body tissues and consumption of pumpkin seeds increases the squalene content in the body. Squalene is known to play a vital role in protecting the skin from UV rays and other types of radiation exposure.
How to Eat Pumpkin Seeds
- Eat them either raw, salted, or unsalted.
- Add them to smoothies, Greek yogurt, and fruits.
- Incorporate them into meals by sprinkling them on salads, soups, or cereals.
- Use pumpkin seeds in baking.
- Prepare homemade granola with a mixture of nuts, dried fruits, and pumpkin seeds.
- Prepare pumpkin seed butter (like peanut butter) by blending whole, raw pumpkin seeds in a food processor until smooth.
- Toss pumpkin seeds with olive oil, season them with cumin or garlic powder or both and bake until the seeds turn brown and toasted.
Pumpkin seeds are incredibly nutritious and loaded with powerful antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins. Including them in your regular diet may help solve dietary deficiencies and may protect against various health problems. It is known to show improvements in heart health, blood sugar levels, immune system, and overall energy. However, it is essential to remember to always go for natural and chemical-free pumpkin seeds while buying. Himalayan Natives Pumpkin Seeds are 100% natural as well as free from chemicals and preservatives. The seeds are sourced locally and ethically. These seeds are of premium quality and are also GMO-free.