10 Reasons to eat more pumpkin
Are you a pumpkin lover like me? Luckily, it's healthy — and here's why you should be eating even more of the delicious fall fruit (yes, it's a fruit!).
Fall is my favorite time of year strictly because of all things pumpkin. Pumpkin pie, pumpkin coffee creamer, pumpkin ice cream, pumpkin bread, pumpkin cookies and even pumpkin chips (to name a few) hit the shelves of the grocery stores and signify the start of this wonderful, cozy season. Thankfully, pumpkin's not all that bad for you (OK, except in the form of cookies or chips), so there's no reason you shouldn't be loading up on this festive fruit. Here are 10 reasons you should be eating even more pumpkin this season!
Check out these 29 sweet and savory pumpkin recipes >>
It's high in fiber
One cup of canned pumpkin contains a whopping 7 grams of fiber. Fiber keeps your digestive system in check and helps wash out toxins.
It's low in calories
It's a good source of vitamin A
Did we say good? We meant great. Pumpkin contains more than 200 percent of the recommended daily value of vitamin A. Vitamin A is necessary for vision, it helps fight cancer and it keeps mucous membrane cells healthy.
It's high in potassium
One cup contains almost 400 milligrams of potassium. Potassium is good for the heart, it helps relieve anxiety and it enhances your muscles. Throw some in a smoothie post-workout to give yourself an extra boost.
It's high in vitamin C
Pumpkin contains almost 20 percent of the recommended daily value of vitamin C in just 1 cup. We all know vitamin C helps the common cold, but did you also know it's the first line of defense against cancer? Neither did we!
It enhances your mood
Pumpkin doesn't just lift your mood because you're happy to be eating it, but it actually helps your body produce serotonin — the natural mood-enhancing hormone.
It's low in fat
I'll eat a food strictly because it's low in fat, not necessarily because it tastes great. With pumpkin, I get the best of both worlds — a tasty food containing less than 1 gram of fat per cup.
It reduces your risk of breast cancer
Pumpkins contain carotenoids which decrease the risk of cancer. In fact, women who consumed high amounts of carotenes had the lowest risk of breast cancer.
Pumpkin helps keep the skin from getting wrinkles both when eaten and applied to the skin. Massage a little pumpkin pie filling into the skin and let it sit for a few minutes for smoother, younger looking skin.