Healthy Eating

Go Orange: Amazing Pumpkin Health Benefits, Allegedly

Fall is here, supposedly. In Miami we've still got 90-degree days, and a monster electric bill.

But at least pumpkins are here again because despite what the weather would have you believe it is in fact "that time of year."

Here are some alleged pumpkin health benefits that'll have you going for the gourd:

  • "Pumpkins are high in lutein and zeaxanthin, which scavenge free

    radicals in the lens of the eye. Therefore, they may help prevent the

    formation of cataracts and reduce the risk of macular degeneration." [AssociatedContent]

  • The distinctive bright orange color of pumpkin clearly indicates that it's an excellent source of that all-important antioxidant beta-carotene. [HowStuffWorks]
  • Pumpkin seeds are high in protein, potassium, magnesium, zinc, iron, copper and essential fatty acids. [Dietobio]
  • Half cup of pumpkin seeds contains 92 percent of your daily value of magnesium, a mineral in which most Americans are deficient. [HealthDiaries]
  • Modern folk healers believe the pumpkin to be beneficial in ridding the body of intestinal worms and also believe the ground stem of the pumpkin brewed into a tea may help ease women during their menstrual cycle. [HubPages]
  • A full cup of pumpkin cut into cubes has only thirty delicious calories and almost no fat. [HealthMad]
  • Phytosterols are compounds found in plants that have a chemical structure very similar to cholesterol, and when present in the diet in sufficient amounts, are believed to reduce blood levels of cholesterol, enhance the immune response and decrease risk of certain cancers. [WHfoods]
  • The alpha-carotene and beta-carotene are potent antioxidants found in pumpkin and are pro-vitamin A carotenoids, meaning the body converts them to vitamin A. [Food-Facts]