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Pumpkin Power!

Don’t just carve them or decorate them, cook them!

Halloween is around the corner and families across the country are planning their parties, their kids are starting to think about what they want to dress up as, and the candy is everywhere!

If your neighborhood is anything like ours, you are starting to see pumpkins everywhere!

Most people look at pumpkins as something they carve for fun with the kids or a popular filling for pie at Thanksgiving … but there’s more to pumpkins than meets the eye!

What many people don’t know is that pumpkins contain many important and beneficial nutrients.

According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, one cup of cooked, boiled, or drained pumpkin (without salt) contains:

  • 1.76 g of protein

  • 2.7 g of fiber

  • 49 calories

  • 0.17 g of fat

  • 0 g of cholesterol

  • 12.01 g of carbohydrate

This amount of pumpkin also provides:

  • Over 200% of the recommended daily allowance (RDA) of vitamin A

  • 19% of the RDA of vitamin C

  • 10% of the RDA of vitamin E, riboflavin, potassium, copper, and manganese

  • 5% of thiamin, B-6, folate, pantothenic acid, niacin, iron, magnesium, and phosphorus

This giant orange gourd can be delicious but also a healthful ingredient to embed into your fall recipes. One of my favorite things to recommend to kids with constipation is 1 tablespoon of pumpkin puree. While pumpkin may be considered a high glycemic food, the low carbohydrate content of this nutrient rich food prevents a spike in blood sugar in those struggling with diabetes.

Let’s go far beyond the, not so healthy, pumpkin pie this year and explore some amazing meals you can enjoy with pumpkin this fall. Google “pumpkin recipes” and you will be surprised how many different options there are from pumpkin pasta, spicy pumpkin chili, to pumpkin bread and more!

Also try roasting the pumpkin seeds in the oven. The health benefits to the seeds alone are endless.

  • Add roasted pumpkin seeds to healthy sautéed vegetables.

  • Sprinkle roasted pumpkin seeds on top of mixed green salads.

  • Grind roasted pumpkin seeds with fresh garlic, parsley and cilantro leaves.

  • Mix with olive oil and lemon juice for a tasty salad dressing.

  • Add chopped roasted pumpkin seeds to your favorite hot or cold cereal.

  • Add roasted pumpkin seeds to your oatmeal raisin cookie or granola recipe.

One great healthy way to enjoy the benefits of pumpkin this time of year is with a delicious healthy pumpkin soup.

Here’s a great recipe I like from -

Treat yourself and your family to some Pumpkin Power this Fall season!

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