‘Tis the season for all things pumpkin, and it turns out this winter squash can actually help improve your health. Pumpkins are tasty and packed with vitamins and minerals that offer health benefits from boosting immunity to helping with weight loss.
This is why you might want to add pumpkin to your meals this fall:
- To protect your eyesight- They’re high in vitamin A, which is important for eye health. The nutrient can “lower the risk of developing cataracts,” according to dietitianChristine Gagnon. Pumpkin is also one of the best sources of lutein and zeaxanthin, two compounds linked to lower risk of age-related macular degeneration.
- To boost immunity- These orange gourds are also loaded with vitamin C, which is associated with immunity-boosting.
- To help you stay limber- Pumpkins are also a great source of potassium, and dietitianKimberlyBakerexplains that the mineral “helps to contract muscles, regulates fluid and mineral balance within the cells of the body, and helps to maintain normal blood pressure."
- To shed a few pounds with a healthier diet- Since pumpkins are low in calories, high in fiber that can help you feel full longer, loaded with nutrients and largely made up of water, they can be beneficial for weight loss.
- To help you look younger- All those antioxidants in pumpkins help protect cells from damage caused by free radicals and as a result, slow the aging process, according toHarvard Medical School.Baker explains that beta carotene, one of the most prevalent antioxidants in pumpkin, can “prevent aging in the skin.”