Pumpkin is a perfect vegetable to cook with and it differs from other vegetables in its unique color and taste. While the pumpkin has numerous health benefits, it’s seeds are not far behind either.
Pumpkin seeds or pepitas are great for your heart as they contain magnesium that play vital role in heart maintenance. Magnesium helps in relaxation of blood vessels in the body and maintenance of proper supply of blood to the heart. They are great preventative measure for serious conditions such as heart attack and stroke. In addition to that, steady levels of cholesterol in the body are being maintained by phytosterols present in the seeds which in turn reduce a risk of cardiovascular disease.
Pumpkin seeds are great as they help regulate sleep. They are loaded with high levels of tryptophan which is the essential amino acid in production of serotonin. Serotonin in turn gets converted into melatonin which is the sleep hormone. In order to get a good night’s rest, it may be advisable to eat a handful of pumpkin seeds and a small fruit before bedtime.
Loaded with zinc, pumpkin seeds give our immune system a boost by helping to regulate immune function of the body along with decreasing the risk of viral infections. These seeds are also rich in vitamin E and selenium which prevent tissue injury caused by free radicals in our body. Overall, pumpkin seeds are great in strengthening our body’s defence mechanism.
Another significant role that pumpkin seeds have is maintaining prostate health in men. Various studies have shown that zinc is important in support of normal functioning of prostate gland and helps in the treatment of an enlarged prostate (benign prostatic hyperplasia). As it turns, pumpkin seed oil and the seeds itself are very rich in zinc.
Pumpkin seeds are found to prevent onset of diabetic complications as they improve the regulation of insulin. They are loaded with good fats and iron which is imperative to keep blood sugar levels balanced.
As they are abundant in magnesium, pumpkin seeds can decrease complications that can occur during menstruation. Such complications include breast pain, bloating, insomnia etc. As per studies, these seeds reduce hot flashes, joint pain, headaches while improving HDL cholesterol levels and mood in postmenopausal women.
It is believed that depression by various factors such as chemical imbalance in the brain. In addition to that, hormonal imbalance can also cause depression. Pumpkin seeds contain healthy fats that decrease inflammation in the brain. They also contain high levels of tryptophan, which is an amino acid that is responsible for serotonin production. Serotonin is a hormone that plays a vital role in behavior regulation while helping improve sleep, mood, pain and appetite.
Bladder discomfort can be relieved by eating pumpkin seeds as there are certain chemicals that are present in the seeds that have a diuretic effect (increase urination) on person’s body. Intestinal worms found in the digestive system can also be eliminated by eating pumpkin seeds as they also contain an amino acid cucurbitin that acts as an antibacterial agent.
People with arthritis can also benefit from eating pumpkin seeds as they are rich in fatty acids such as omega-3 and omega-6 . Among numerous benefits of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids are its anti-inflammatory properties that lower risk of arthritis and providing relief from pain.
And last but not the least, pumpkin seeds are source of protein which is great in managing hunger and aiding in weight loss. As they contain iron, they improve energy levels in the body and prevent us from craving sugary and high-calorie foods.