It’s almost Halloween and that means you’ll see pumpkins somewhere! But this is autumn vegetables It’s much more than just cutting them up to make scary decorations.
Pumpkin It can have a positive impact on our health and well-being, from It helps you lose weight, improve your skin, and even reduce your risk of developing it Cancer, researchers say University of Warwick.
“It’s easy to see pumpkins as a new vegetable, used more for seasonal decorations than for our diet. But there are many reasons why we should eat more of these vegetables: they are cheap, easy to grow and rich in antioxidants and vitamins. Josh Gibbsa researcher in plant nutrition at Warwick Medical School.
Contains pumpkin It is about 90% water and is relatively low in calories compared to other vegetablesPerfect for Helps lose weight.
“The calorie content per 100 grams of pumpkin pulp ranges between 15 calories and 46 calories. “This makes it a great option for bulking up meals while keeping calories low, keeping you full and promoting weight loss,” says Gibbs.
Pumpkin also contains Beta carotenewhich gives it its distinctive orange colour, explains Gibbs: “The bright orange color of pumpkin is a reflection of its most sought-after nutrients: Beta carotene It is a carotenoid, a group of molecules that have antioxidant properties that our body converts into vitamin A.
the Vitamin A It is necessary for eye health and eating large amounts of it Beta carotene Reduces the risk of cataracts and macular degeneration. It also improves the immune system and Helps maintain healthy skin. Gibbs It is recommended to combine pumpkin with a healthy source of fat, such as olive oil, to help absorb vitamin A.
Pumpkin also contains many other antioxidants, such as Lutein and lycopene And vitamin C. A high intake of antioxidants protects against cancer and cardiovascular disease by reducing DNA damage and inflammation, Gibbs says.
It’s not just the fleshy parts of pumpkin that have a number of health benefits: Seeds have it too“Most of us throw away the most nutritious part of the pumpkin: the seeds!” Gibbs explains. “Pumpkin seeds are an excellent source of fiber, protein, unsaturated fatty acids, and minerals like zinc and vitamin E.”
But if the traditional options of pumpkin soup or pumpkin pie don’t appeal to you, Gibbs She recommends adding them to smoothies or curries, or roasting them in the oven for a sweet side dish.. the The seeds are also great with granola.
but this is not all. Pumpkins are also good for the environment and affordable.
“Pumpkins can be grown across the UK and are suitable for our climate, as long as they are planted after the danger of frost has passed and harvested before the autumn frosts set in,” says the professor. Richard Napier. “They are generally problem-free and fun to grow, but watch out for slugs!”
“Pumpkins are huge, local production and short supply chains make sense to reduce long food journeys and reduce dependence on EU imports,” he adds. “It’s a healthy, affordable vegetable and a celebration of the season.” Let’s learn how to cook with pumpkin to avoid unnecessary food waste.
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