10 Reasons to eat more pumpkin

Oct 30, 2013 at 11:00 a.m. ET

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!).

Woman holding pumpkin pie

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

One cup of cubed pumpkin is just 30 calories, meaning you won't ruin your diet by loading up on large quantities of this superfood. We love the cubed pumpkin in our Thai curry pumpkin noodle soup.


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.


It's anti-aging

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.


It tastes great

Pumpkin is good — are we right or are we right? Try this chai pumpkin Greek yogurt smoothie or these easy two-ingredient pumpkin cookies.

More pumpkin recipes

Simple toffee pumpkin cake
Vegan spicy pumpkin soup with lemongrass and coconut milk
Pumpkin and whipped cream-filled whoopie pies