You buy pumpkins for eating, for Halloween… But do you know what you’re buying? Do You know anything about its nutritional and health benefits? If no, read this to get some things clear!
Apart from its delicious and perfumed taste, health benefits of pumpkin are also superb.
This vegetable is ranked above other vegetables as one of the most nutritious food we have…it’s a super food. It’s packed with very powerful anti-oxidants and bioflavonoids that inhibit cancer; improve digestion and fight other much feared diseases.
The plant is a creeping plant that belongs to cururbitaceae family just like squash, cucumber, cantaloupes…etc.
Structurally, the fruit has a thick outer shell, which turns orange or yellow when mature and the inside pulp becomes orange yellow in color. In the middle, there is a hollow net like structure with numerous seeds (white in color) engulfed.
Pumpkins are readily available in the market all round the seasons. Although different varieties may vary in taste, color, size and shape; buy a well mature pumpkin.
Fully grown pumpkin is heavy in hand, fine woody note on tapping, stout stem and orange-yellow in color. A fresh whole pumpkin can stay up to two months at room temperature if in good condition.
If chopped, keep the remaining portion refrigerated to prevent dust or germs getting in and maintain flavor.
Avoid pumpkins that have wrinkled skin, cuts or bruises on the surface or soft parts as they are signs of spoiled or overstayed stock.
To ensure you enjoy all the health benefits of pumpkin, don’t waste the seeds. Pumpkin seeds are edible and they are the most nutritious. They are excellent source of essential omega-3 fatty acids, minerals, vitamins and proteins.