Never Fear, The Great Pumpkin Is Here!
Eating healthy can still be festive! Pumpkin is not only a delicious pie, but also a secret super food. One cup of canned pumpkin has seven grams of fiber and three grams of protein, even more than the fresh stuff, believe it or not! Packed with vitamin A, C and K, eating pumpkin on a regular basis could help boost your immune system. Pumpkins have only eighty calories per serving, and they have the immune-boosting powers essential for eye health and heart health. The high fiber can help lower LDL cholesterol and regulate blood sugar levels. Pumpkin flesh contains L-tryptophan, a chemical that can help trigger happiness by acting as a natural anti-depressant!
The seeds classify the pumpkin as a hidden super food. One ounce, or about 140 pumpkin seeds, contains about seven grams of protein. They also have essential fatty acids that help protect us from diseases such as high blood pressure, arthritis and cancer. Fatty acids can also help improve skin health and brainpower. Be careful, though, because too much pumpkin consumption can cause a condition called carotenemia, in which your skin temporarily turns yellow. The seeds have amazing antioxidants, protein, magnesium, zinc and potassium.
After carving your jack-o-lantern, let the pumpkin seeds soak in water. When you’re ready to bake the seeds, rinse out the pulp and strings. Add two tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil to a baking sheet and just a sprinkle of sea salt. Pop the pumpkin seeds in the oven at 350°F for about 10 – 15 minutes.
Your Jack-o-lanterns won’t be the only things smiling after you fill up on these other great pumpkin recipes. Try these pumpkin recipes for all of your fall holiday parties!
These 6 Creative Pumpkin Recipes for Fall are the ideal way to celebrate the changing leaves and crisp air of autumn. Try them and tell us what you think!
Get a little crafty with pumpkin hummus! This pumpkin hummus will keep both health and holiday in mind – a great way to spice up your fall themed party or have a little snack! Full of protein, try pairing it with whole wheat pita bread or sprinkle it with pumpkin seeds.
Not ready to let go of summer just yet? These Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream Sandwiches are spectacular snacks make an excellent fall alternative to the favorite ice cream sandwich. This healthier option will help curb that ice cream craving.
This Spicy-Sweet Pumpkin Soup is a fantastic way to warm up to the fall festivities! Using non-fat Greek yogurt instead of heavy cream, this pumpkin soup is a healthy way to warm up and feel full.
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, so why not try Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal! With 6 grams of fiber and protein, it’s a great way to start your day or eat as a pre-workout snack. Make sure you use Steel Cut Oats so you get the most health benefits. Not into oatmeal? Try adding 2 tablespoons of pumpkin puree with 1 teaspoon maple syrup to a ½ cup of non-fat Greek yogurt to add a little extra spice to your yogurt!
Try a vegan-friendly pumpkin recipe with these dairy-free Skinny Pumpkin Banana Bars! It’s a great alternative to pumpkin pie and only 141 calories if you leave off the icing. Try adding some protein powder for a pre-workout snack by substituting 1 teaspoon of baking soda and 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar for each egg.
Pumpkin Pie is a holiday favorite, but no one wants the extra calories that come with a delicious treat. This No-Bake Layered Pumpkin Pie is a great healthy alternative to the fatty, high caloric pumpkin pie, where your average piece runs at 323 calories and a whopping 14.6 grams of fat. This recipe cuts out a ton of fat using pudding instead of heavy cream, graham cracker pie crust instead of the doughy alternative, and is only 195.5 calories per serving!