Pros of Pumpkins

1. Low calorie weight loss

Pumpkins are extremely low calorie. And the good news is the fact that they are low in calories does not take away from their high fiber. This leads to feeling full longer, with a low calorie option. Unfortunately, consuming pumpkins in pies and breads doesn’t really apply to this idea. But if some cooked mashed pumpkin is not your idea of fall fun, there are healthier versions of pumpkin pies, breads, lattes, and cookies for your content.

If you’re craving a sweet treat but don’t want to be a victim to fall’s familiar muffin top, check out this healthier recipe of pumpkin bread from Cooking Light!

To make it healthier, opt out of all purpose- flour for whole wheat flour. If you don’t feel comfortable with this, try half and half!

2. All the good stuff

Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin D, Vitamin K, the list of antioxidants goes on. With high Vitamin D, pumpkin provides the necessary support for your immune system.

3. Post Workout Warrior

Are pumpkins the new banana for fall? A banana is a popular post workout snack, but it turns out a cup of cooked pumpkin has more potassium than a banana. Not only is it a delicious fall snack, but it balances the body with providing electrolytes and maintaining muscles after a tough workout.

4. Pumpkin seeds—heart health

Nuts and seeds provide the necessary phytosterols, or plant based chemicals, that can help with heart health. Why? They are a catalyst to lowering cholesterol.

5. Eyesight

Orange is definitely not a sight for sore eyes.  According the National Institutes of Health 200 percent of one’s recommended daily intake of Vitamin A can be found in a mere cup of mashed up and cooked pumpkin. This in turn aids in vision- most notably in dim lighting. Carotenoids, which give pumpkins their orange glow (so lucky they have year round), contain another form of Vitamin A, allowing for extra eye help.

6. Smiling

Instead of skipping the pumpkin patch adventure of the season because you are too tired, think that pumpkins might be the boost you need! Pumpkins are rich in the amino acid tryptophan, which elicits serotonin, keeping your mood in good spirits. However, it should be noted that tryptophan might be a cause of the sleepy feeling after Thanksgiving turkey. This has been attributed to overeating by most though, so maybe one slice of pumpkin pie instead of three would work best.