Last week I had 2 pumpkin-themed articles posted and a third in draft when I realized that 3 is enough for a themed week. And so, I pulled and rescheduled the two posted articles and scheduled the third. Welcome to Day 1, where I show you why you need more pumpkin in your life.
1. Pumpkin is loaded with Vitamin A for overall health
Carotenoids are pigments. They're why pumpkins are orange. Carotenoids, found in plant foods, can turn into a form of vitamin A. There are more than 500 known carotenoids. One such carotenoid is beta-carotene, an antioxidant. Antioxidants protect cells from damage caused by substances called free radicals. Free radicals are believed to contribute to certain chronic diseases and play a role in the aging processes. Food sources of carotenoids such as beta-carotene may reduce the risk for cancer. Beta-carotene protects cholesterol from oxidation, which assists in the prevention of heart disease and it is anti-inflammatory.
Julie Daniluk points out that pumpkin is one of the first foods introduced to babies because of its ease of digestion (source link above). It's also recommended for dogs with an upset stomach.
(I forget about this every time my dog's stomach is upset even though I've had this knowledge for a long time)
5. Pumpkin is a good source fiber
1 cup of mashed pumpkin has 11% of your daily recommended fiber intake. This is good for digestion (see #4), helps keep you regular (pooping) and will help keep you full. Remember this when you read my new two blog posts. Tomorrow you'll get 2 recipes for pumpkin lattes – with real pumpkin – and on Wednesday you'll get pumpkin smoothie recipes.
6. Vitamin C
19 % of your daily recommended vitamin C intake might not seem like a lot, but it's definitely a benefit. Vitamin C is good for the immune system. On Thursday, I'll post a pumpkin soup recipe. The soup will be nourishing, warming and comforting whether you're warding off a cold or not.