Pumpkins, pumpkins everywhere it seems. But, now that Halloween is past with jack-o-lanterns carved, what good is a pumpkin? The answer is plenty. Pumpkins offer a great nutritional value to your diet. If you didn't carve your pumpkin, there still may be time to roast it and enjoy. The typical pumpkin (1 cup cooked, boiled and drained - No salt added) Contains the following nutrition - A great food choice for parents to feed their children and for any adult to snack on:
49 Calories - (In cup of pumpkin)
Protein 2 grams - All living cells are made up of proteins. They are necessary for growth and repair of the body's tissues. Proteins also provide energy and aids in building muscle and can even help in losing weight.
Carbohydrate 12 grams - Carbohydrates supply your body with glucose, which is our body's fuel. There are complex and simple carbs. Pumpkins provide a good source of healthy carbs. Of course, any carbs can overload your body if eaten in excess.
Dietary Fiber 3 grams - Fiber helps digestion and also aids in reducing cholesterol and has even been found helpful in the prevention of cancerous cell growth.
Calcium 37 mg - Calcium helps our bones and teeth stay strong. This is helpful in preventing osteoporosis and allowing our bones to stay healthy so they can produce marrow.
Iron 1.4 mg - Iron is essential for life. It is a component of hemoglobin, the red pigment in blood that transports oxygen to the cells and removes carbon dioxide from the cells.
Magnesium 22 mg - Magnesium is the fourth most abundant mineral in the body. It helps maintain normal muscle and nerve function. It helps to keep the heart rhythm steady and promotes healthy blood pressure. It helps support a healthy immune system, keep bones strong & regulates blood sugar levels.
Selenium .50 mg - Selenium has been found helpful in fending off some types of cancers. Selenium is an essential trace element and a powerful antioxidant.
Vitamin C 12 mg - An antioxidant that has been proven helpful in helping the immune system and healing wounds. It is used to create collagen which is a protein that makes the skin, joints and bones strong.
Niacin 1 mg - Niacin is a B vitamin that has been used to increase high-density lipoprotein (HDL), the "good" cholesterol.
Folate 21 mcg - Folate is a water-soluble vitamin that helps the body form red blood cells.
Vitamin A 2650 IU - Among other things, Vitamin A helps with eyesight, healthy growth and taste (appetite).
Vitamin E 3 mg - vitamin E helps as a powerful anti-oxidant to the immune system. The vitamin protects fats in the body from oxidation and in so doing, eliminates free radicals that can damage the skin. Vitamin E plays a role in skin anti-aging as it helps skin look younger by reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
So, if you don't have a pumpkin ready to roast, it's time to go out and find one.