Pumpkin seeds

Pumpkin: the most fabulous squash in the world. It’s so versatile! Pumpkins can be cut up and prepped for so many sweet, spicy and savory dishes. And, bonus: come mid-October, you and your friends can slash, carve and stab the sturdy squash to your heart’s content!

One part of the pumpkin I’m quite fond of are those seeds. Pumpkin seeds are super easy to remove and cook, and are filled with ridiculous amounts of nutrients.

Pumpkin seeds are an alkaline-forming food and contain protein, zinc, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, iron, vitamin K, E, C, D and B, and copper. The little, easily roasted seeds also contain phytosterols, which reduce LDL cholesterol, and L-tryptophan, which can help you sleep sound and ease depression! And if you’re a vegetarian or vegan seeking a healthy way to consume omega 3,6 and 9 fatty acids in food, pumpkins can now be one of your go-to snacks.

Need more proof that these seeds are stellar? Pumpkin seeds can:

  • Prevent calcium oxalate kidney stone formation.
  • Keep bones healthy: pumpkin seeds contain the formerly mentioned zinc. Zinc helps protect against osteoporosis.  Zinc is also essential for maintaining healthy sperm production and helps men stave off testosterone deficiency.
  • Reduce inflammation without the side effects many anti-inflammatory drugs cause.
  • Help men maintain prostate health: pumpkin seed oil helps alleviate difficult urination, which occurs when a prostate is enlarged.

Ready to get your munch on? Try out the following pumpkin seed recipe: Sweet-Hot Pumpkin Seeds with Autumn Spices.

Resources:

http://www.care2.com/greenliving/13-health-benefits-of-pumpkin-seeds.html?page=1

http://realfoodforlife.com/5-sources-of-power/

http://www.livestrong.com/article/266586-health-benefits-of-pumpkin-seeds/

Image: shawncampbell