Autumn is pumpkin time. At this time of year you encounter them everywhere, on your plate or as decoration, and especially at Halloween people let their imagination run riot carving them into lanterns. But pumpkins (and other types of squash) are also gaining recognition as a source of nutrition − and for very good reason.
Low-calorie flesh with rich health benefits
Since pumpkin consists primarily of water, its flesh yields a mere 26 calories per 100 grams. It’s also a source of many important vitamins and minerals such as potassium that help keep our body strong. Pumpkin also contains dietary fibre, which is good for the digestion and great if you’re trying to lose weight.
Good for the cells and eyes
Pumpkin contains large amounts of beta-carotene, an antioxidant that protects our cells from damaging molecules called free radicals. This helps neutralise potentially cancerous cells and regenerate damaged skin cells. The body processes beta-carotene further to produce vitamin A, essential for good eyesight.
It’s not only the flesh that’s healthy. Pumpkin seeds are also very good for your health. They’re often used as a delicious garnish in salads or eaten as a crunchy snack. While they have more calories than the flesh, they’re a rich source of unsaturated fats, which have important health benefits – for example they contain valuable minerals and vitamin E, which is particularly good for the skin. The secondary plant substances in pumpkin seeds are also good for the heart because they help reduce cholesterol.
SWICA – for the best medicine
Beyond improving your health, a healthy lifestyle also has benefits for people insured with SWICA in the form of help and support with taking care of your health. Please call us toll-free on 0800 80 90 80 for non-binding advice.