Pumpkin is a favourite of many. It can be eaten not only on its own, but also as a dessert, smashed into cakes, as a side dish and even in salads. Pumpkin has outstanding nutritional benefits. It’s full of anti-ageing antioxidants and is a very good source of fibre, which helps with digestion. Of course, there are other benefits of a fibre diet, such as reducing the risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
Pumpkin is a rich source of potassium, beta-carotene, calcium, magnesium, and vitamins E, C and B. Both vitamins C and E, as well as beta-carotene, are also great antioxidants, actively contributing to skin health.
As we age, collagen production in the body decreases. However, vitamin C causes the body to start producing collagen, making the skin firmer and more supple, which is why pumpkins have such a great anti-ageing effect. Vitamin C also promotes faster wound healing, healthy gums and helps to maintain optimal blood vessel function.
Vitamin E is another antioxidant vitamin that is also found in pumpkin. Together with vitamin C, they are very effective in helping to protect us from the harmful effects of the sun. The more of these vitamins we have in our bodies, the less chance we have of dry skin.
Beta-carotene is also a great antioxidant, which is converted into vitamin A in the body, which also plays a big role in warding off the harmful effects of UV radiation and helps to keep the skin healthy.
If we don’t have enough vitamin A in our bodies, we could be at risk of reduced vision or even blindness. Vitamin C, A and E together can reduce the risk of developing age-related eye diseases.
Metabolic syndrome is the umbrella term for three diseases: obesity, hypertension and diabetes. Metabolic syndrome increases the risk factors for stroke, but research shows that eating vegetables and fruits high in carotenoids reduces its development – and pumpkin is quite rich in carotenoids.