Pumpkin has so much to offer beyond autumnal front porch decoration and a latte flavor to signal to the world your inherent basic-ness!
Side note: today I learned that there are 42 types of pumpkin. Oh my gourd, who knew? Although they’re all edible, the pumpkin variation that is the most delicious and best for cooking is the sugar pumpkin a.k.a. pie pumpkin. Apparently, the larger variations of pumpkins that make the best jack-o'-lanterns don’t taste particularly pleasant and are a pain to prep.
Here are 5 reasons to make the most of the season and pack more pumpkin into your diet!
1. Great for weight loss
Pumpkin is a great choice for anyone looking to slim down! It's nutrient-dense, low in calories, high in appetite-suppressing fiber, and is very filling.
2. Easy to prepare
Roasted pumpkin is a deliciously simple dish to make. All it takes is some salt, oil, and an oven. Scroll down the get the recipe for perfect roasted pumpkin!
3. Low in carbohydrates
Keeping an eye on your macronutrients? Watching your carb intake? With only 8 grams of carbohydrates per cup, pumpkin is lower in carbohydrates than other starches such as potatoes, corn, and other winter squashes.
Pumpkin is loaded with vitamins and minerals that can help give your immune system a boost. Influenza activity starts to pick up around October…Add more pumpkin to your diet and heighten your defenses!
5. Supports beautiful, youthful skin
Pumpkin is an excellent source of antioxidant beta-carotene which gives skin a healthy glow and naturally provides protection against the sun's wrinkle-causing UV rays as well as harmful free radicals.
It’s also a good source of vitamin C which is pertinent to the body’s production of collagen. Collagen loss = fine lines and wrinkles, enlarged pores, and reduced skin elasticity. Eat more pumpkin and give your skin a glow-up!
RECIPE: Simple Roasted Pumpkin
- 1 sugar pumpkin, 2-3 lbs.
- 2 tbsp olive oil, coconut oil, or avocado oil (your choice!)
- 1 tsp sea salt
- ½ tsp black pepper
Makes about 4 servings
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees
- Cut the pumpkin in half and scrape out the seeds with a spoon (PS: Roasted pumpkin seeds also make a tasty and healthy protein-rich snack, so you may want to hang on to them!).
- Drizzle pumpkin with oil, then season with sea salt and pepper. Feel free to incorporate other spices to suit your personal taste preferences such as cayenne, paprika, turmeric, cumin… get creative!
- Place both pumpkin halves face-down on a baking sheet. Roast for about 40 minutes or until very soft.
- Cut into 1-inch slices or cubes and serve!