The benefits of pumpkin seeds aren’t something you hear a whole lot about these days, and I’m not sure why. Sure, almonds are great, as are chia seeds, but what about pumpkin seeds? These little green gems are just bursting with benefits, many of which most people are missing out on. Next time you pass by them at the store, be sure you pick some up. With all the benefits of pumpkin seeds, there’s just no reason not to enjoy them each and every day!
One of the most unknown benefits of pumpkin seeds is their antifungal properties. Pumpkin seeds have been found to help fight off yeast overgrowth such as candida albicans, which many women and men suffer from due to a high sugar diet. Eliminate your sugary foods and have a couple tablespoons of pumpkin seeds instead!
2. High Protein
Pumpkin seeds are also very high in protein, with actually more grams of protein than hemp seeds per serving. Per ¼ cup of pumpkin seeds, you’ll get 14 grams of protein, which is incredible for a little green seed. For this reason they are excellent at preventing and treating low blood sugar, and will keep you fuller longer.
3. Alkaline Forming
Most seeds are slightly acidic, but pumpkin seeds are actually alkaline forming, which means they help balance the pH in your body and bring nutritional balance to your cells. An alkaline body can ward off inflammation, along with acne, weight gain, and stress.
4. High Fiber
Per ¼ cup, pumpkin seeds boast 6 grams of fiber, with absolutely no sugar. This can help keep your digestive system working well, and also reduce your blood sugar levels.
5. Unique Taste
I personally love the taste of pumpkin seeds. They’re slightly nutty, a bit creamy, just crunchy enough, and even a tad sweet. I like to top my smoothies or oatmeal with them, but they’re delicious all on their own too.
Pumpkin seeds can be used anywhere, even in healthy baked goods, entrees, raw dishes like desserts or energy bars, or even made into homemade veggie burgers or stirred into yogurt, oats, and smoothies. They also make a fabulous addition to any trail mix, by the way! With the versatility pumpkin seeds offer, it gives you an easier chance of including them in your diet, which will help keep you fuller longer, and give you additional health benefits.
Since pumpkin seeds are a complete protein, they contain one of the most essential amino acids for your health- tryptophan. Tryptophan helps relax your blood pressure, reduce stress, enhance your mood, and can help you rest as well. Pumpkin seeds are perfect to have during a time when you’re stressed, and are exceptionally high in this amazing amino acid.
Pumpkin seeds are also magnesium rich, and I’m sure you’ve heard about how important magnesium is for your health. This one mineral helps your entire nervous system function properly, and aids in enzyme functions within your entire body. Consuming more magnesium rich foods is a fantastic way to improve your health and will even help you lose weight and keep your digestive system regularly. Most all seeds are rich in magnesium, so eat more seeds like pumpkin seeds to get the fantastic benefits they have to offer.
9. Healthy Fats
Pumpkin seeds are high in fat, and sadly this is why many people avoid them, but you truly shouldn’t. Pumpkin seeds, like all nuts and seeds, should be eaten in the correct portions. You don’t need a huge amount to get the benefits. In fact, your stomach will absorb the nutrients better if you eat smaller quantities. Choosing healthy fats from foods like pumpkin seeds can improve your mood, metabolism, your skin, nails, and hair, so be sure you include them in your diet.
Always choose your pumpkin seeds in the form of raw and unsalted for the healthiest varieties. You might also see them sold as pepitas, which is just another name for them. My favorite economically friendly brand is Whole Foods 365 brand. I buy their shelled pumpkin seeds for around $4 a bag, and have about a month's supply of non-GMO, unsalted, raw pumpkin seeds in my fridge to enjoy anytime I want. Do you eat pumpkin seeds? What’s your favorite way?