Why We Love Pumpkin and Why You Should Too
by Alexandra Mamalider on Sep 22, 2021
If we had to sum up fall into 3 words, it would be Pumpkin Spiced Everything. It may sound like an exaggeration, but we assure you, this isn’t a drill. We are pumpkin obsessed over here and once we tell you why, you will be too!
Great Carb Alternative
Even though many of us go pumpkin crazy in the fall months, pumpkin isn’t just a fall must-have. Not only do they grow all year long, but they also pack a nutritional punch. Like many other vegetables, pumpkins are low in calories and high in nutrients. On average, one cup of pumpkin clocks in at roughly 50 calories. Yup, you read that right. Being made up of about 90% water, you can consume more of it than other carb sources (like potatoes, rice or our personal fave, pasta) and STILL take in fewer calories. We’re not done. You know what else pumpkins are filled with? Fiber. You know what fiber does? Slows your digestion, leaves you feeling full longer AND curbs your hunger. Pinch us because something this delicious cannot possibly be this good for us!
With winter quickly approaching we can appreciate the importance of staying healthy. Building up your immune system in preparation for flu season is a must. Pumpkin is high in beta-carotene, which our bodies turn into vitamin A. Vitamin A is used to boost our immune systems and help fight infections. Pumpkin is so high in vitamin A that 1 cup of pumpkin puree is 8x our daily suggested intake. Not only is pumpkin a major source of vitamin A, but it is also high in vitamin C. This is proven to increase white blood cell production, helping our immune cells work harder and heal us faster.
Do you know what else beta-carotene is good for? Maintaining healthy skin! This time though, we are going to add carotenoids to the mix. Carotenoids are little molecules found in brightly coloured fruits and vegetables such as, you guessed it, pumpkins! Once ingested, our bodies move them to different organs including our skin. This combination of beta-carotene and carotenoids work together to protect skin cells from harmful UV rays. Pretty cool right? The high amount of vitamin C found in pumpkin is also important for healthy skin. Vitamin C produces collagen in our bodies, a protein that keeps our skin strong and healthy.
High in Antioxidants
We’ve said it once, we’ll say it 100 times. Antioxidants are SO important when it comes to overall health and guess what, pumpkins are rich in them! Antioxidants help fight free radicals in the body. Although free radicals are produced naturally, a buildup can cause oxidative stress which can then lead to chronic inflammation. This inflammation could lead to chronic illnesses such as cancer or heart disease. So, in short, pumpkin helps our bodies protect itself from cell damage while also potentially preventing further, more serious health issues.
Improves Heart Health
Pumpkins, as you might have gathered so far, are a source of many different nutrients. Antioxidants, magnesium, zinc, and fatty acids specifically are great for keeping our tickers ticking. Heart health is something none of us should take lightly and should strive to protect. The great part about pumpkins is that they are rich in these nutrients in various forms. Pumpkin seed oil for example has been proven to reduce high blood pressure and cholesterol levels. This reduction paired with high levels of potassium found in pumpkins appears to reduce the risk of stroke. Back tracking to the antioxidants again, they protect bad cholesterol from oxidizing, clumping along the vessel walls and restricting said vessels.
We hope we’ve converted you to a pumpkin lover! Although fall seems to be the ultimate #pumpkinszn, pumpkins are an amazing source of vitamins (and more) all year round! Not only are they delicious, but they’re also so versatile! You can have them in soups, stews, and even in a latte – as long as it's made with real pumpkin of course. Speaking of real pumpkin, don’t forget to check out our new Limited Edition Pumpkin Spice Latte – here for a good time not a long time! Get yours while quantities last!