Embrace The Health Benefits Of Pumpkin This Season

The Perks Of Pumpkins

Don’t get too excited…we’re not speaking about pie essentially (although it has its place). We’re referring to the precise pumpkin, pumpkin puree and pumpkin seeds. National Pumpkin Day is approaching on October 26, so what higher approach to actually eat in season?

The pumpkin is a member of the squash household and truly boasts many dietary properties that profit runners. Pumpkins are filled with antioxidants, as evidenced by their wealthy orange shade. They are additionally excessive in lots of different vitamins for runners, similar to vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E, potassium, copper, folate, iron, magnesium and fiber. While there isn’t any one food that may give you the whole lot you want nutritionally, pumpkins do have fairly a bit to supply.

Vitamin A

One cup of pumpkin offers you with greater than 100 % of the every day advisable quantity of vitamin A. Vitamin A helps type and keep healthy pores and skin tissues and membranes, promotes good imaginative and prescient and enhances immunity. Running takes a toll on the physique and immune system, so getting sufficient vitamin A may help maintain your physique heathy all through your training cycles.

Vitamin C And Vitamin E

Vitamins C and E are each pure antioxidants that assist improve the physique’s protection system and shield it from free radicals (substances that may trigger hurt within the physique). Like citrus fruits, pumpkins are very excessive in vitamin C, which can also be concerned in immunity and restoration. Furthermore, vitamin C can assist the absorption of iron, which might be problematic for a lot of feminine runners.

Iron is significant for runners as a result of it attaches to hemoglobin, which helps transport oxygen to muscle tissues when operating. Runner lose iron by means of sweat, intestinal losses, foot strike hemolysis and menstruation (for females). A serving of pumpkin can present almost 10% of your day by day iron wants.


You’ve in all probability heard about potassium in relation to muscle cramping. Potassium is a key electrolyte for runners as a result of it really works with sodium to assist stability fluids in our our bodies. It’s necessary for runners for that cause, but in addition for its position in regulating blood strain, nerve transmission and muscle contraction. One cup of pumpkin puree provides 500mg of potassium, almost 15 % of the day by day suggestion.

Copper, Folate And Magnesium

Let’s not overlook concerning the micronutrients that pumpkin presents, like copper, folate and magnesium. These are vitamins that we’d like in smaller quantities. Folate performs a task in power metabolism and in addition contributes to the health of pink blood cells, which assist ship oxygen to the working muscle tissues. A deficiency in folate can result in macrocytic anemia, the place pink blood cells don’t divide usually. Macrocytic anemia typically leads to fatigue, because the improper dividing of pink blood cells means there are fewer cells to ship oxygen to muscle tissue. Magnesium is a cofactor in additional than 300 reactions within the physique, together with muscle and nerve perform, power manufacturing and muscle contraction. One-quarter cup of pumpkin seeds provides you almost half of your physique’s day by day magnesium wants.

Don’t underestimate how these vitamins can enhance your operating. Fall is the right time to incorporate pumpkin puree or pumpkin seeds in your meals and snacks. Add some pumpkin seeds to your yogurt, salads or path combine, throw pumpkin puree in a crockpot chili or make pumpkin soup. You can even add some to your pasta or pancakes. Embrace the orange nutrient!

Pumpkin Nutrition Information

Canned Pumpkin (1 Cup)

  • Calories: 83
  • Total Fat: 1g
  • Carbohydrates: 20g
  • Protein: 3g
  • Fiber: 7g

Pumpkin Seeds (1/four Cup)

  • Calories: 170
  • Total Fat: 15g
  • Carbohydrates: 4g
  • Protein: 10g
  • Fiber: 2g 

Sarah Schlichter is a registered dietitian and marathon runner based mostly in Charlotte, N.C. She works as a nutrition advisor and in personal apply, the place she writes the weblog Bucket List Tummy, sharing nutrition posts, healthy recipes, operating tips and every little thing on her bucket record.

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