While pumpkin seeds are freshest in the fall, when pumpkins are in season, you don’t have to wait until Halloween to enjoy this nutty treat—they’re available all year round. Here’s why you should include pumpkin seeds in your diet.
Pumpkin seeds are an excellent source of the minerals phosphorus, magnesium and manganese, and a good source of iron, copper and zinc. In fact, zinc may contribute to pumpkin seeds’ role in maintaining prostate health—making it a wonderful addition to men’s diets. And zinc-rich foods like pumpkin seeds also support bone mineral density in men.
And if that wasn’t enough, pumpkin seeds are also a good source of vitamin K, protein and omega-3 fatty acids. Plus, there are many ways to incorporate pumpkin seeds into your diet.
If you munch on commercial trail mixes, ditch it and create your own using slivered almonds, walnuts halves, pumpkin seeds and raisins or chopped dates.
Spice up oatmeal with pumpkin seeds, dried cranberries and turmeric (pictured above).
If you’re a vegetarian, try protein-loaded quinoa cereal with fresh fruit. Mix ¼ cup of cooked oatmeal with ¼ cup of cooked quinoa. Top with ½ cup of soymilk, 1 tsp honey, ¼ cup blueberries and 1 tbsp pumpkin seeds.
You can also benefit from pumpkin seed oil. According to Healthy Oil Planet, the benefits of pumpkin seed oil include:
- Prevent and reduce bladder and prostate problems.
- Lower your cholesterol and blood pressure.
- Give you smoother and healthier-looking skin.
- Increase your energy levels and provide excellent antioxidant protection.
Why does this matter to you? Because it’s easy to get stuck in a food rut. And since there are so many superfoods to benefit from, it’s important to include a variety of them in your diet. Pumpkin seeds are a tasty alternative to slivered almonds, pecan pieces or chopped walnuts.