Pumpkin seeds, also called ‘pepitas’, are rightly termed ‘superfood’. Even though they are tiny, they are a treasure trove of health benefits. They have high medicinal value and are a rich source of healthy fats, fibres, protein, manganese, phosphorous, copper, zinc, iron, magnesium and many more nutrients that helps to keep your health in check. These seeds are edible and can be easily incorporated into your diet. Consumption of pumpkin seeds also boosts your overall skin and scalp health. It is rich in zinc which renews skin cells, repairs skin damage, promotes healthy and glowing skin, reduces hair fall, conditions it, and increases the volume of your hair.
Pumpkin seeds health benefits
Antioxidant Rich – It is rich in nutrition and 1 ounce of pumpkin seeds has 151 calories in the form of fat and protein. It is high in antioxidants like carotenoids and Vitamin E which helps in reduction of inflammation and protects your body against many diseases. The antioxidants and phytochemicals present in them helps to build immunity and reduces the possibility of viral infections.
Omega 3 fatty acids – It reduces the risk of breast, stomach, lung, colon, and prostate cancers. They are high in zinc which helps with prostate issues and pumpkin oil helps in the reduction of an enlarged prostate. They are fibrous and high in omega 3s which decreases oxidative stress and improves your cardiovascular system. Research proves that it helps reverse arthritis and diabetes. When it decreases oxidative stress, it balances insulin in the body.
Better sleep – Tryptophan is pumpkin seeds helps your mental wellbeing, calms your mind, and reduces anxiety. It also helps you sleep better at night.
Balance Harmons – It decreases post menopause symptoms in women. Since these seeds are rich in zinc and high in antioxidants, they improve sperm quality and contribute to healthy testosterone levels in men. READ MORE – Seed Cycling For Hormonal Balance
Weight loss – They are low in carb and high in proteins which helps in weight reduction or maintenance of weight. Snack on pumpkin seeds to keep you full for longer and curb hunger.
Pumpkin seeds beauty benefits
Healthy skin and hair – The beta-carotene in pumpkin seeds, acts as an internal sunscreen and protects your skin from the heat of the sun. It contains amino acids and antioxidants which slows down early ageing and reduces wrinkles. It is high in vitamin C which boosts collagen production and fades the unwanted skin pigmentation. The presence of vitamin E enables healthy hair growth. The alpha hydroxy in them helps to eat away dead skin cells when applied on your skin and gives you a fresh and new layer. It helps in whitening your skin. The omega-3 fatty acids soften your skin and improves its texture.
Ways to roast and store pumpkin seeds:
Pumpkin seeds are easily available in the market. But if you want to roast them at home, here are some simple methods to do so:
Roast the pumpkin seeds on low flame with half a teaspoon of ghee or olive oil. Sprinkle some rock salt or black salt as you roast it. Add half a spoon of chilli powder or chaat masala for taste and roast it for 12 minutes on simmer. Store it in an airtight container and consume 1 spoon of the roasted seeds every day. You can also store it with other nuts which you consume every day.
Dehydrating Pumpkin Seeds: Sprinkle some coconut oil and sea salt on the pumpkin seeds and lay them out on an oven tray. Heat it at 170 degrees for 20-25 minutes. This will dehydrate the seeds, preserve the nutrients and fats, and also prevents them from turning rancid. You can then store them in a container and have them as a snack whenever you want.
Put clean, rinsed seeds in a saucepan with 2 cups of water and 2 teaspoons of salt for each cup of seeds and bring to a boil. Drain it and toss with about a tablespoon of olive oil and spices of your choice before roasting at 400 degrees for 20–25 minutes. Store them in a container for daily use.
Different ways to Consume pumpkin seeds:
In order to get the most benefit from it, it is best to consume them raw or you can dehydrate the seeds and roast them to consume it as a snack.
- You can use them in baking, garnish for soups and salads and also add them to rice puddings.
- It can be consumed along with your breakfast cereal and added to trail mix.
- You can blend a handful of these seeds in your smoothies.
- You can grind them and add them to your curries, edible paste, and various sauce that you use while cooking.
- You can include them in brittle, bread, pesto, and flan.
- You can add them in desserts instead of the regular almonds and cashews.
Hair growth Pumpkin Seed Bars Recipe –
You will need –
- Roasted nuts – 1/4 cup
- Pumpkin seeds – 1/4 cup
- Oats – 1/2 cup
- Dates – 1 cup
Soak dates in a bowl of hot water to soften the dates for 15 mins. Lightly roast the oats in a pan for 5-6 mins and add it to a blender jar. Remove the seeds from the dates and add them to the blender. Add in roasted pumpkin seeds along with 1/4 cup of any nuts of your choice like peanuts, almonds or a mix of nuts. Blend them together until you get a sticky dough like consistency, if it is dry then add in 1-2 tbsp of coconut oil to it and blend again. Add everything to a container and press it in. Freeze for few hours before you cut them into bars. Have one bar a day to improve your hair growth and also for healthy skin. READ MORE – HEALTHY RECIPE – OATS ENERGY BALLS with just 5 ingredients
Pumpkin seeds Beauty Routine:
Moisturising Pumpkin Seeds Face Mask: Grind a tablespoon of pumpkin seeds, add a teaspoon of pumpkin seed oil, a tablespoon of raw honey and mix well. Add enough milk to the mixture to form a thin paste. Apply the mask on your face and leave it for 20 – 30 minutes and wash it off for soft and glowing skin.
Skin Brightening scrub:
Blend 3 spoons of pumpkin seeds with water till it turns into a thin paste. Add one spoon of honey and mix well. Store this thin paste in an airtight container. You can apply this directly on your face everyday or you can use it with other ingredients for better results.. This helps to unclog the pores, removes impurities, hydrates, and exfoliates your skin and leaves behind soft, glowing and acne free skin. This can be used not only on your face but also on your arm pits, elbows, knees, and areas where there’s darkening of skin.
Hair Growth mask:
Massage pumpkin seed oil to your your scalp and leave it on for 1 hour and then wash it off with a mild cleanser. This can be done twice a week to see a significant improvement in your hair. READ MORE – Pumpkin seed oil Overnight Hair Treatment for thicker hair