Benefits of Pumpkin

 

Fall is in full swing and pumpkin patches are popping up everywhere! Not only are pumpkins fun to carve and great decorations around the house, studies show that this fall festive has several health benefits too! So this season, when you go carve pumpkins grab an extra and read below of how you can reap the benefits of this trendy vegetable into your fall lifestyle!

Benefits:

Sharpen Eyes

Consuming a cup of mashed pumpkin contains over 200% of the daily recommendation of vitamin A. Vitamin A aids in vision especially in dim or dark light. Pumpkins are also rich in carotenoids, the compounds that give the gourd their bright orange color, including beta-carotene, which the body converts into a form of vitamin A for additional peeper protection.

May Reduce Cancer Risk

Just like sweet potatoes, carrots and butternut squash, pumpkins too are packed with great beta-carotene. This natural supplement is known to play a role in cancer prevention. Even pumpkin seeds have been linked to keeping cells at bay.

Help After Hard Workout

Have you ever heard that Bananas are the best post workout snack? Pumpkin is better! Studies show that cooked pumpkin has more of the refueling nutrient potassium with 564 milligrams to Banana's 422.

Healthier Heart

Pumpkin seeds are naturally rich in plan based chemicals called phytosterols that are known to reduce bad cholesterol. A Healthy option to preparing pumpkin seeds to roast in the oven with olive oil with your choice of seasoning. Pumpkin seeds make for a great snack for a party, tailgate or packed lunches for your children! 

Sleep Better

Pumpkin seeds are the new glass of milk when it comes to sleep remedies. Pumpkin seeds contain zinc which help the brain convert tryptophan into serotonin for proper sleep. They are high in magnesium which help relax your muscles fibers before sleeping.

 

Need a new healthy pumpkin recipe? Check out this great recipe from Kim's craving blog!

PUMPKIN OATMEAL MUFFINS

Author: Kim Lee

Recipe type: Breakfast

Prep time:  8 mins

Cook time:  30 mins

Total time:  38 mins

Serves: 12 muffins

 

These Pumpkin Oatmeal Muffins are the perfect grab-n-go breakfast or snack with our favorite fall flavors!

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats, gluten-free as needed
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 1 egg or 2 egg whites
  • ¼ cup pure maple syrup (honey works too)
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (any milk will work)
  • ¼ cup chopped pecans or walnuts (optional)
  • ¼ cup dried craisins or any dried fruit (optional)
  • ¼ cup mini chocolate chips(optional, but recommended)

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray. In a large bowl, stir together oats, baking powder, seasonings and salt.
  2. Add pumpkin, egg, maple syrup, vanilla extract, milk and add-ins. Stir well to incorporate.
  3. Allow the mixture to set and thicken for about 3-5 minutes before spooning into your muffin pan.
  4. Fill muffin cups almost completely full with batter. The muffins will not rise.
  5. Bake for 30 minutes and until the center of each oatmeal muffin is set. Allow to cool for 10 minutes before serving. If you don't allow these to cool before taking them out of the muffin pan, they will fall apart. I used a knife around the sides to make removal easier. After cooling, they will set well. Store in a covered container in the fridge for about a week or freeze for up to 3 months.

NOTES

Nutritional information calculated using 1 egg and ¼ cup mini chocolate chips.

NUTRITION INFORMATION

Serving size: 1 muffin Calories: 116 Fat: 2.7g Saturated fat: 1g Carbohydrates: 20.3gSugar: 9.1g Sodium: 103.3mg Fiber: 2.3g Protein: 2.9g Cholesterol: 16.2mg

http://www.kimscravings.com/2015/10/pumpkin-oatmeal-muffins/