By: LECOM Wellness
This time of year, you may see pumpkins used for Halloween décor, to make a tasty hot drink or sweet dessert. However, adding pumpkin to your diet can help improve your health and fitness. Here are three health benefits of pumpkin:
Pumpkin contains several nutrients that are essential to keeping your immune system strong. Vitamin A helps protect you against infections, viruses and infectious diseases. Vitamin C helps you to recover from existing colds faster and pumpkin oil helps to fight bacterial and fungal infections (Obenschain, 2017).
With seven grams of fiber per cup, pumpkin is a perfect diet option to aid in weight loss. Fiber will help you to feel fuller longer and curb your appetite (Obenschain, 2017).
Beta-carotene is a yellow/orange pigment that the human body converts to Vitamin A. Since a cup of pumpkin contains 200 percent of recommended daily intake of Vitamin A, this will support your optical health, skin and help lower your risk of certain cancers (Obenschain, 2017).
Protein Pumpkin Shake
Try this recipe for a sweet and filling fall treat (Owens, 2014).
One-half cup pumpkin puree One teaspoon of honey
One banana One teaspoon of chia seeds
One-fourth cup of Greek nonfat yogurt, plain One-half teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
One-fourth cup of almond milk, vanilla flavored One cup of ice
One tablespoon of protein powder Granola for topping (optional)
Directions: Blend ingredients together until well combined. Top with granola or pumpkin pie spice.
Obenschain, C. (2017). 6 Surprising Health Benefits of Pumpkin. Retrieved from WEBMD: http://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/features/6-surprising-health-benefits-of-pumpkin#1
Owens, C. (2014, April 22). Protein Pumpkin Shake. Retrieved from A Pumkin and a Princess: http://apumpkinandaprincess.com/2014/04/protein-pumpkin-shake.html
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