Where I live, as soon as the thermometer falls below 80 people start talking about what pumpkin treat or drink they’re going get first. Pumpkin, as Fall’s flavor of choice is certainly trendy, but is it healthy?
Often pumpkin is associated with foods like pumpkin bread, pumpkin pie, pumpkin ravioli and many more delicious options. While these are all fantastic ways to show off this squash, the health benefits of pumpkin are often overlooked. This delightful member of the squash family is loaded with fantastic nutrients like the four listed below*.
- Good source of fiber – beneficial for digestive health and weight loss.
- Rich source of carotenoids – a colorful pigment that helps the body make vitamin A.
- Significant source of potassium – one cup of pumpkin has more potassium than a banana!
- Good source of Vitamin C – great for supporting your immune system and keeping your skin healthy.
I always remind my clients that even the healthiest of foods can be made into something that’s a dieting disaster, and the same rule applies here for pumpkin. So here are four of my favorite ways to use pumpkin whether its trendy or not!
- Add canned or boxed pumpkin to your waffle or pancake mix for a fiber and nutrition boost.
- Create a parfait, layering canned pumpkin with Greek yogurt, nuts and granola.
- Roast peeled and diced pumpkin in the oven with a little coconut oil, salt and cinnamon.
- Add pumpkin (canned or roasted) to your smoothie, so filling and so delicious.
I love that Smoothie King is so ahead of the game and has already launched their Pumpkin Spice Smoothies – it’s a great option to get in fiber, vitamins and minerals from Pumpkin all while enjoying every sip! You can also choose between using frozen yogurt or Greek yogurt in your pumpkin smoothie, depending on your purpose. Have you tried it yet?
What’s your favorite way to enjoy pumpkin? Share photos of your answer with #PumpkinPassion and tag @smoothieking!
*nutritional information based on 1 cup mashed pumpkin nutritionals as reported by: http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/vegetables-and-vegetable-products/2601/2