You might think pumpkins are just for carving, but they're actually really good for EATING. Unfortunately pumpkin pie and Pumpkin Spice Lattes don't count. Anyway, here are five potential health benefits of eating pumpkin . . .
1. It could lower your risk of cancer. Pumpkin is high in carotenoids, which are compounds that can function as antioxidants. And that allows them to neutralize free radicals, which may protect you against certain cancers.
2. It might boost your immunity. Pumpkin is loaded with nutrients that can boost your immune system, like beta-carotene, vitamin C, vitamin E, iron, and folate.
3. It could protect your eyesight. Pumpkin contains lutein and zeaxanthin, which have been linked to stronger eyesight as your body ages, and could lower your risk of macular degeneration and cataracts.
4. It could help you lose weight. Pumpkin is packed with nutrients AND low in calories . . . we're talking less than 50 calories per cup. And it's got a bunch of fiber, which can help curb your appetite.
5. It might improve your heart health. Pumpkin's got a lot of potassium, which has been linked to lower blood pressure and a reduced risk of strokes.
It's also high in antioxidants, which might help stop "bad" LDL cholesterol from clogging up your blood vessels and increasing your risk of heart disease.