It’s that time of the year again when you’re all out with the whole family choosing the right pumpkin and then carving it out for Halloween. However, as we told you in a previous article be careful and do not throw away those seeds as they are packed with essential vitamins and nutrients.

In this story, the focus of our attention is pumpkin—the seasonal, yet the ever-so-popular vegetable that is packed with the goodness of health. Did you know a cup of cooked pumpkin has more than 200 percent of the recommended daily intake of vitamin A? It is also rich in beta-carotene and fiber.

Here are five ways in which pumpkins can benefit your health.

1. Prevent Cancer
Pumpkins are rich in beta-carotene, which helps prevent the onset of cancer. It is especially helpful in preventing breast cancer as well as colon and prostate cancer. [1]

2. Protect Against Obesity
Pumpkins are loaded with fiber, which keeps you full for a longer period of time and prevents you from unhealthy snacking. [2]

3. Reduce Diabetes Risk
Eating pumpkin will help reduce your blood glucose levels and improve your glucose tolerance. It will also increase the levels of insulin produced by your body, reducing your chances of getting diabetes. [3]

4. Good For The Heart
The fiber content in pumpkins is good for your heart. It reduced the chances of coronary heart disease in subjects of a major  study as compared to those who did not eat pumpkins. [4]

5. Keep Blood Pressure In Check
Pumpkins contains potassium, vitamin C and fiber that will help keep your blood pressure levels in check and prevent them from getting too high. [4]

For more interesting stories, visit our Health page. Read more about Diseases & Conditions here.

Read More:
7 Healthy Reasons To Not Throw Away Those Pumpkin Seeds
Did You Know Pumpkin Seeds Could Treat Urinary Incontinence?
Holiday Pumpkin Seeds: Don’t Trash Them, Rehash Them

Reference:

1. Effects of phytoestrogen extracts isolated from pumpkin seeds on estradiol production and ER/PR expression in breast cancer and trophoblast tumor cells. 1: Richter D, Abarzua S, Chrobak M, Vrekoussis T, Weissenbacher T, Kuhn C, Schulze S, Kupka MS, Friese K, Briese V, Piechulla B, Makrigiannakis A, Jeschke U, Dian D. Effects of phytoestrogen extracts isolated from pumpkin seeds on estradiol production and ER/PR expression in breast cancer and trophoblast tumor cells. Nutr Cancer. 2013;65(5):739-45. doi: 10.1080/01635581.2013.797000. PubMed PMID: 23859042. (Accessed 23 Oct 2015)

2. Fibre from pumpkin(Cucurbita pepe L.) seeds and rinds: physico-chemical properties, antioxidant capacity and application as bakery product ingredients. 1: Nyam KL, Lau M, Tan CP. Fibre from pumpkin (Cucurbita pepo L.) seeds and rinds: physico-chemical properties, antioxidant capacity and application as bakery product ingredients. Malays J Nutr. 2013 Apr;19(1):99-109. PubMed PMID: 24800388. (Accessed 23 Oct 2015)

3. Anti-diabetic effects of pumpkin and its components, trigonelline and nicotine acid, on Goto-Kakizaki rats. 1: Yoshinari O, Sato H, Igarashi K. Anti-diabetic effects of pumpkin and its components, trigonelline and nicotinic acid, on Goto-Kakizaki rats. Biosci Biotechnol Biochem. 2009 May;73(5):1033-41. Epub 2009 May 7. PubMed PMID: 19420712. (Accessed 23 Oct 2015)

4. Antihypersensitive and cardioprotective effects of pumpkin seed oil. 1: El-Mosallamy AE, Sleem AA, Abdel-Salam OM, Shaffie N, Kenawy SA. Antihypertensive and cardioprotective effects of pumpkin seed oil. J Med Food. 2012 Feb;15(2):180-9. doi: 10.1089/jmf.2010.0299. Epub 2011 Nov 14. PubMed PMID: 22082068. (Accessed 23 Oct 2015)

A pregnancy & babycare writer as well as wellness believer, Debolina is always trying to bring in health and wellness into her family’s, especially her kids’, lives. With a Master’s degree in English literature, she has worked with several mothercare and babycare brands. In her free time, she helps with campaigns that work towards promoting the health and well-being of women and babies. Her experiences as a mother help her talk about busy modern-day parenting and its changing trends.