Did you know that pumpkins are not only something that you can carve and display in your garden on Halloween? They also contain pumpkin seed protein that has plenty of health benefits to offer.
What are some key health benefits you can get from pumpkin seed protein?
A type of squash, pumpkins are round in shape and deep yellow to orange in color, with slightly ribbed, smooth skin. They are a great source of pumpkin seed protein, which is a plant-based protein that has been linked to the following health benefits:
Improving your vision
Pumpkin seeds are an excellent source of vitamin A, a nutrient that is essential to eye health. By adding pumpkin seeds to your regular diet, you can improve and support healthy eye functions.
Lowering your risk of cancer
Pumpkin seeds are loaded with antioxidants and carotenoids, which provide protection against free radicals that cause cancer. Certain studies found that people who consumed more carotenoids, particularly alpha-carotene and beta-carotene, showed reduced risks of breast, stomach, pancreas, throat, and other types of cancer.
Supporting heart health
Pumpkin seeds are rich in essential vitamins and minerals that are crucial to your heart health. They contain high levels of fiber, vitamin C, and potassium, which help in lowering blood pressure levels, reducing bad cholesterol levels, and protecting against stroke and heart disease.
Building your immunity
Pumpkin seeds are high in beta-carotene, vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E, folate, iron, and other nutrients that are key to strengthening the immune system. According to studies, vitamin A is critical in effectively fighting off infections and vitamin C boosts the production of white blood cells, allowing the immune system to function better.
Pumpkin seeds contain an amino acid called tryptophan, which helps in the production of serotonin in the body. Known as the feel-good hormone, serotonin helps stabilize your mood and emotions. It also plays an important role in your sleeping patterns. If your body has low serotonin levels, you may experience some negative physical or psychological effects, such as low energy, negative thoughts, fatigue, depression, irritability, memory issues, anxiety, and sleep problems.
Pumpkin seeds are a low-calorie, high-fiber food. A serving of pumpkin (1 ounce or 28 grams) contains 151 calories and 1.1 grams of fiber. By eating them, you can feel full faster and not eat as much, which could help you lose some weight. You can also enjoy improved digestive health and avoid bloating, constipation, and other gut issues.
How can you get pumpkin seed protein from pumpkin seeds?
There are various ways to prepare and eat pumpkin seeds to avail of the benefits of its plant-based protein. Below are a couple of examples that you might want to try:
Raw or roasted pumpkin seeds – Whether raw or roasted, pumpkin seeds can be used as toppings for your salad. They can also be blended into your favorite smoothie, shake, and other beverages.
Pumpkin seed protein powder – You can buy pumpkin protein powder and mix some pumpkin protein powder in your favorite protein shake or smoothie recipe to make your own pumpkin protein shake or pumpkin protein smoothie at home.