7 Potential Health Benefits of Pumpkins

7 Potential Health Benefits of Pumpkins

Carving pumpkins, roasting the seeds for a nutrient-dense snack, and displaying the candlelit faces on your porch are fall traditions many people enjoy. But these bright squashes aren’t just for show, and their nutritional potential isn’t limited to pumpkin seeds alone.

Pumpkin flesh, or pulp, is a vehicle for many nutrients. “Pumpkin is a powerhouse of potassium and fiber, two nutrients that most adults lack in their diets,” says Joan Salge Blake, RD, clinical professor of nutrition at Boston University.

While pumpkin pies, breads and muffins are common ways to enjoy the fruit — yes, pumpkin is technically a squash — baked goods aren’t the only option. You can roast pumpkin cubes and serve them with your main dishes or incorporate the cooked flesh into soups, stews, curries, salads and chilies. Fresh pumpkin is best when it’s in season, which is during the fall and winter months, according to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

With canned pumpkin, you can enjoy the flavors of fall all year round. Canned Pumpkin makes it easy to add steamed pumpkin to smoothies, hummus, oatmeal, and pasta sauces. Just be sure to get regular canned pumpkin instead of pumpkin pie filling, which may include added sugar.

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