You know it’s autumn when vegetable also provides a significant amount of and potential benefits. Before you dig into your next squash for pie, or the crunchy seeds, it is best to understand all of the nutrients, possible benefits, and methods for preparing and storing pumpkin.becomes a part of your seasonal diet, and aside from being a and , this
What is a Pumpkin?
Pumpkin is a broad categorization of where you are in the , the term pumpkin may be used to define a specific type of squash, or for all varieties of squash. What many don’t realize is that are actually a fruit, since they are the -bearing structure of this plant. However, due to the texture and flavor of pumpkins, they are commonly grouped as ., and this cultivar is most commonly known as Cucurbita pepo. Depending on
These particular forms of squash tend to be light to deep fiber, pulp, and are stored, surrounded by a thick, dense outer layer of its flesh, which is often sought after for various culinary preparations, such as pie! While the of pumpkins in some parts of the world are linked specifically to or (e.g., autumn, Halloween etc.), these winter squash varieties are important sources in some parts of the world. This is also one of the most comprehensively used , as the flesh, seeds, and leaves of the fruit are used in different preparations.in color, when , and are rounded, with slight ribbing around the exterior. Inside a pumpkin is a hollow area where the
There are quite a few different pumpkin types, including Crookneck pumpkin, Field pumpkin, Cucurbita Maxima, Cucurbita Argyrosperma and more than 40 other varieties, all of which share similar characteristics and nutritional profiles.
- Crookneck Pumpkin: This cultivar has smooth or bumpy skin and is normally yellow in color. They rarely form the perfect rounded appearance that people expect from pumpkins and should be harvested when for best results.
- Cucurbita Maxima: This species contains more than a dozen individual , making it one of the most common forms of pumpkin, but many of the varieties are little known by most people.
- Cucurbita Argyrosperma: Also known as the Japanese pie pumpkin, this is a species of winter squash that -colored pumpkins, with and green , and more of an oblong shape.
- Field Pumpkin: This is the “classic” type made famous during Halloween and autumnal celebrations, with a perfectly round, ribbed and orange appearance.
Pumpkin Nutritional Information
Pumpkins are far more than a seasonal treat, as they are packed with nutrients, such as vitamin A, as well as moderate amounts of many other important compounds, including copper, iron, B vitamins, , vitamin E, phosphorous and magnesium. In a single cup of this vegetable, there are only 30 , which makes it ideal for weight loss . There are also several types of , low levels of , and small amounts of protein and .
Health Benefits of Pumpkin
Pumpkin has been connected to a number of health benefits, such as the ability to reduce cancer, improve vision, protect health, boost immunity, increase , improve density, and aid loss, among others.
With high levels of vitamin C in every bite, pumpkin is an excellent way to promote the health of the system, as it can stimulate the production of white , which are the ’s first line of defense against and foreign .
Pumpkins are surprisingly low in calories, making them ideal for people who are trying to lose weight. While their dietary fiber content is not as impressive as some other vegetables, they can help suppress your without your daily caloric intake.
With notable amounts of beta- , , and , these vegetables are excellent ways to boost vision health, as these antioxidants can slow down the progression of both and . These squash varieties also have more than 250% of your daily requirements for , which is linked to vision health.
The antioxidants found in pumpkins, including the active ingredient cucurbitacin, can help prevent certain types of and reduce oxidative throughout the body.
Neural Tube Defects
There is a good amount of folate found in pumpkins, which is a key nutrient in the prevention of neural tube defects; therefore, women would do well to add a bit of this vegetable to their diet!
There are many ways to use this vegetable in your diet besides pumpkin pie, including the use of pumpkin seed , pumpkin seeds, a pumpkin mask, and in numerous delicious , such as pumpkin and pumpkin .
- Pumpkin face popcorn. are a great way to and revitalize the , while pumpkin seeds are nutrient dense, that can be eaten just like
- Pumpkin soup makes for a hearty and delicious winter , particularly when combined with squash.
- The seed oil can be applied to for flavor, as well as to the skin and for topical relief of inflammation and the delivery of antioxidant benefits.
How to Store?
Pumpkins can be quite large, meaning that you might not use all of it at the same time, so knowing how to properly store this vegetable is important. In general, they can be stored for up to 3 months, provided you keep them dry and store in a cool place off the ground. For extended storage, and to prevent rot, you canthe outside of the pumpkin with a mild solution to protect against and .
Theplace to store this vegetable is on a piece of dry wood or cardboard, kept away from humidity and direct . Once you slice this squash open and remove the flesh, the pieces can be stored in an container for no more than 2 weeks.