Tagged in: nutrition

Health Benefits Of Pumpkin Seeds You Never Knew

While most people only think of pumpkins for Thanksgiving or Halloween, the seeds of this powerhouse of a fruit offer a unique cocktail of health-enhancing and disease-fighting compounds, minerals, and vitamins. While emerging evidence reveals its miraculous potency in battling heart disease, anxiety, arthritis, bladder dysfunction, and osteoporosis, pumpkin seeds have long been used in many cultures for their medicinal properties for centuries.
 
Some Interesting Trivia
 

    • The earliest known evidence of domestic use of pumpkin seeds dates back to 7000 B.C in Mexico.
    • Pumpkin seeds were first embraced by Native Americans for their miraculous properties before the knowledge of its use was spread to Europe.
    • There is proof of usage of pumpkin seeds in Greek societies.
    • Pumpkin seeds are among the few foods whose nutritive value improves with age. Tests conducted at the Massachusetts Experimental Station reveal that pumpkin seeds stored for more than five months show a marked increase in protein content.
    • Today pumpkin seeds, called pepitas by Mexicans, are a basic ingredient in Mexican dishes.
    • In Russia and Ukraine, pumpkin seeds are a popular snack. If you crave to binge next time, pumpkin seeds are the right option!

 
Nutritional Facts And Health Benefits
 

  1. Bone Protection

 
Pumpkin seeds are a good source of zinc, phosphorous, magnesium, manganese, iron, and copper, thus optimizing bone health. By consuming these magical seeds, it helps prevent osteoporosis.
 
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  1. Battling Heart Disease

 
Rich in phytosterols, pumpkin seeds are very effective in thwarting heart diseases by lowering LDL cholesterol levels. Containing magnesium, pumpkin seeds benefit blood pressure and help prevent cardiovascular diseases.
 

  1. Tryptophan For Restful Sleep

 
Pumpkin seeds contain an amino acid, known as tryptophan, which is a natural sleep inducer. Since carbohydrates increase the bioavailability of tryptophan to the brain, try combining pumpkin seeds with your favorite cereal or a peanut butter sandwich and enjoy a pleasant rest if you have trouble sleeping at night.
 

  1. Improving Bladder Function

 
Among its multitude of health benefits, pumpkin seeds possess the unique ability to improve prostrate health. This is in part because of their high zinc content, which is important for prostrate health, and also because pumpkin seed extract and oils may play a role in treating benign prostatic hyperplasia or enlarged prostrate.
 

  1. Antimicrobial Benefits

 
Pumpkin seeds have long been valued for their anti-microbial benefits including anti-fungal and anti-viral properties. They have even shown to eliminate seriously dangerous microbes from the body including parasites like tapeworms. Furthermore, pumpkin seeds may contribute to preventing yeast overgrowth and yeast infections.
 

  1. Easing Arthritis

 
It has powerful antioxidant properties which are supplemental in reducing arthritis induced inflammation.
 
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  1. Acting As Protein bombs

 
Pumpkin seeds are a great alternative to boost your protein intake without resorting to red meat.
 

  1. Chock-full Of Antioxidants

 
Pumpkin seeds are unique in their abundance of vitamin E, phenolic acids, and antioxidant phytonutrients. The diverse mixture of these compounds in pumpkin seeds may provide them with anti-oxidant related properties that are rarely found in food.
 
Ways To Enjoy Pumpkin Seeds
 

  • Add pumpkin seeds to sautéed vegetables, soups, meatloaf, and stew.
  • Sprinkle pumpkin seeds on top of green salads.
  • Enjoy chopped pumpkin seeds by adding them to your favorite cereal.
  • Bake them in the oven and enjoy roasted pumpkin seeds as a snack.

 

Whether you’re growing an 1800 pound whopper, or you’re reaching for your second serving of pumpkin pie, or if you’re enjoying the anti-inflammatory and antioxidant benefits from this miraculous alkaline squash, you’re in for a powerful health punch offering protection against common health problems.

 

10 Surprising Benefits Of Eating Three Bananas Daily

Bananas are amazingly multipurpose fruits which can be utilized for making refreshing smoothies, adding flavor to any meal, or eaten simply as it is. This is a good explanation of why they’re amongst the world’s most popular fruits: Above 96% of families in U.S. buy bananas minimum once every month, according to a report.

So, we love having bananas! However, is this fascination okay for us?

The research confirms. Bananas not only have a sweet flavor, but they also come at a reasonable price. According to studies, if you eat 3 bananas a day, your body is provided with around 1500 mg potassium and many other benefits.

So what are the benefits exactly?

Mentioned below are 10 health benefits linked to having bananas everyday:

1. They Reduce High Blood Pressure

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According to studies, having at least 3 bananas every day might significantly lower your blood pressure. A banana of a medium size is almost sodium free and has approximately 422 mg of potassium. The higher potassium compared to zero sodium helps in neutralizing the blood pressure that rises due to sodium.

Seems that your mother’s reprimand of getting a banana as a substitute for a bag of chips is very good advice.

2. Bananas Help Digestion

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Bananas are full of fiber, both insoluble and soluble. Fiber is a necessary nutrient for the body as it helps in regulating the digestion speed, easing it down. If you have a banana, you will feel fuller for longer and constipation problems will also be solved.

Hence, they are usually a part of daily breakfast. You begin your day feeling energized and satisfied for longer.

3. Bananas Strengthen Cardiovascular Health

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Having high fiber foods are good for the heart. Also, bananas are filled with fiber. Diets that are high in fiber help to reduce the risk of coronary heart disease (CHD) and cardiovascular disease (CVD). A banana’s soluble fiber, specifically, is linked with a reduced heart disease risk.

A balanced and healthy diet will grant the necessary antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins needed by your body – include one or two for an additional four grams fiber a piece.

4. Bananas Aid Creating Healthy Cells

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Bananas are full of vitamin B6, comprising of 20% of the total amount necessary for adult intake every day. Vitamin B6 aids the body in producing non-essential amino acids, hemoglobin, and insulin essential to producing healthy cells. It also helps in producing antibodies that combat infections.

5. Bananas Advance GI Tract Health

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As bananas are comparatively digested easily, they’re not considered irritating for the gastrointestinal tract (GI tract) of humans. In effect, bananas cannot only relieve digestive sprain, but also ease the digestive tract and aid in restoring wasted minerals post diarrhea. This is the reason why they are the initial solid foods given to babies.

Additionally, this is also a reason why bananas are part of BRAT diet; bananas, rice, apple sauce, dry toast – which is used by dietitians to take care of severe diarrhea.

6. Bananas Are Loaded With Vitamin C

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Strawberries and oranges are the first fruits that come to our mind when we think of vitamin C. However, bananas supply us with an enormous 15% of vitamin C’s daily requirement. It’s an essential antioxidant neutralizing free radicals that are harmful in the body. These free radicals are un-charged ions, molecules, or atoms that constantly destroy body cells. Moreover, vitamin C helps to keep the blood vessels in good health as well as produces collagen which holds together bones, muscles, and additional tissues.

7. Bananas Enhance Athletic Performance

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The reason why most athletes prefer bananas is because they enhance the muscles and supply other nutrients and antioxidants. According to Appalachian State University Human Performance Lab’s study, having half banana in each 15 minute interval during a cycling-time trial test is equally effective as having a sports drink during every 15 minute interval. No wonder the Jamaican Olympic runner Yohan Blake allegedly consumes 16 every day!

8. Bananas Battle Anemia

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Since bananas have a high amount of iron, eating them can boost the production of blood hemoglobin and help in fighting anemia, which is a disease where the blood hemoglobin or red blood cells is reduced, leading to conciseness of breath, paleness, and fatigue. Furthermore, Vitamin B6 in bananas regulates glucose levels in the blood that can also aid those suffering with anemia.

9. Bananas Repress Hunger Pangs

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This happens because having bananas lets you feel fuller for longer, also because of their pleasant smell. That is true, the bananas’ smell can suppress hunger and appetite pangs! Here’s an interesting fact: if you smell them when you’re feeling hungry, your brain will be tricked to think that you have eaten them!

So, bananas can aid you in losing weight.

10. Bananas Boost Your Mood and Make You Feel Happy

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A banana of a medium size has 27 mg of magnesium. It can aid in boosting your mood, also in getting a good night’s sleep. Men need 420 mg and women need 320 mg magnesium every day. If you have low magnesium, you will likely suffer from depression, irritability, anxiety, and other disorders.

As a lot of us do not get sufficient magnesium in our diets, think of eating a banana the next time you are craving to eat something at 3 p.m. It will not only fill you up, but also make you feel positive.