Pumpkin seeds are edible oval-shaped flat seeds that are sweet and nutty in taste. It is also known as a folk remedy because of its extensive use from ages for different health conditions. It is believed that pumpkin seeds are good for diabetes. Read the blog to understand more about the “health benefits of pumpkin seeds” and how it regulates blood sugar.
Pumpkin seeds are known as pepita in North America. These nutty seeds have been used to treat high blood pressure, blood sugar, UTIs, kidney stones, or parasite-like worms for years. One can eat them as roasted or as a spiced and flavored snack.
Pumpkin Seeds & Blood Sugar Level
According to research, pumpkin seeds can also help people with diabetes manage their blood sugar levels. Pumpkin seeds are high in magnesium, which is not easily found in the diet. Magnesium helps regulate blood sugar levels, lowering your risk of diabetes.
Nutritional Values of Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin seeds are a good source of many nutrients that help in diabetes control & other health-related conditions. A 30gm of pumpkin seeds serving contains:
This table represents several nutrients and their amounts present in 30gm of Pumpkin Seeds:
|Nutritional Value of Pumpkin Seeds|
|Nutrients (in 30 grams of Pumpkin Seeds)||Its amount|
In addition, Vitamin B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B9, Vitamin C, E & K are also present in pumpkin seeds in varying quantities. These rich nutrient pumpkin seeds reduce the risk for many chronic health conditions that also include cancer.
Furthermore, pumpkin seeds and seed oil also contain a variety of other nutrients and plant compounds that are beneficial to health.
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Benefits of Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin seeds benefits can be categorized in many ways that help to lead a healthy lifestyle. Pumpkin seeds benefits include:
One of the health benefits of Pumpkin seeds is their anti-inflammatory quality. Pumpkin seeds are high in antioxidants because they contain Vitamin E and carotenoids. These antioxidants prevent cell damage caused by free radicals in the body and reduce inflammation. This anti-inflammatory property of pumpkin seeds maintains the better function of the bladder, bowel, liver, and joints. Pumpkin seeds are also rich in fiber which increases its effect.
One intriguing study discovered pumpkin seeds were associated with a significantly lower risk of breast cancer in postmenopausal women as compared to no consumption. A second study discovered they can also help protect premenopausal women. Furthermore, pumpkin seeds’ anti-inflammatory ability reduces the risk of many diseases.
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Good for Heart
Pumpkin seeds help in better heart health in various ways. They are rich in magnesium which helps in lowering blood pressure that is related to decreased risk of heart diseases and stroke.
In addition to it, Magnesium also reduces bad cholesterol (LDL) and triglycerides in the body which eventually improves heart health and strengthens it.
Pumpkin seeds are high in unsaturated fats, such as alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). Because of their ALA content, pumpkin seeds may be beneficial to the heart and the prevention of cardiovascular disease.
According to research, the antioxidants in pumpkin seeds boost nitric oxide levels in the body. It helps to keep your blood vessels smooth, healthy, and flexible which improves blood flow and lowers your risk of cardiovascular diseases and circulation problems.
Antioxidants and fiber in pumpkin seeds also protect the heart from various heart disorders.
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Reduces Risk of Cancer
A healthy diet can reduce the risk of cancer. Many studies show that including pumpkin seeds in the diet can reduce the risk of multiple cancers like colon, lung, stomach, breast, and prostate.
Pumpkin seeds are high in zinc and Carotenoids that reduce the risk of prostate cancer. Similarly, as per many studies, the presence of lignan in seeds helps to prevent and treat breast cancer. Including them in a diet, lowers the risk of breast cancer in postmenopausal women.
The presence of antioxidants in pumpkin seeds causes apoptosis or the death of cancer cells. Although, more research is required to back up these results.
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Improves Bladder Health
According to research, taking pumpkin seeds or supplement products of them can help treat overactive bladder symptoms. It is believed that pumpkin seeds are good to prevent or treat urinary disorders.
Another study found that taking 10 grams of pumpkin seed extract every day improves urinary function with overactive bladders.
Pumpkin seeds may help alleviate the symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), in which the prostate gland enlarges and causes urination problems. A study was carried out on 1400 men with BPH where they showed reduced symptoms and improved health.
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Pumpkin seeds strengthen the immune system as it contains zinc and vitamin E. Where zinc helps in inflammation, allergies, and infections, vitamin E boosts immunity and protects the body against various infectious diseases.
It also prevents healthy cells in the body from free radicals. Pumpkin seeds are also antifungal, antimicrobial, and antiviral.
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Pumpkin seeds can help to induce sleep and its quality because of multiple reasons. There is an amino acid called tryptophan which promotes sleep and is found in pumpkin seeds. It makes the seeds a better inducer for sleep.
Apart from tryptophan, zinc, copper, and selenium also help improve sleep quality and sleep hours. The zinc converts tryptophan to serotonin which changes into melatonin and regulates the sleep cycle.
People with insomnia and trouble sleeping can consume pumpkin seeds before bed. 1gm of tryptophan is good to improve disturbed sleep. In addition, magnesium in pumpkin seeds helps reduce anxiety and stress which leads you to have a sound sleep.
People with better magnesium levels have improved quality of sleep with adequate sleep time than people who have low magnesium levels. So it is better to take magnesium or magnesium supplements to have a good sleep.
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Helps in Weight Loss
Protein and fiber are abundant in pumpkin seeds. That’s why one feels full for a long time and reduces their desire to eat more resulting in fewer calories. This, eventually, contributes to weight loss.
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Helps in Improving the Quality of Sperm
Since pumpkin seeds are high in zinc content it improves fertility in men. It is believed that it also increases the quality and quantity of sperm. When zinc levels are low in the body, it reduces sperm quality and quantity and can increase the risk of infertility. Zinc also helps in increasing testosterone levels.
Pumpkin seeds are rich in antioxidants and many nutrients that make testosterone levels and fertility levels healthy with better reproductive function.
Some studies show that high zinc levels also protect human sperm from chemo and autoimmune disease damage.
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Helps in Anxiety
Magnesium is very helpful in reducing anxiety and stress levels and it is found in pumpkin seeds abundantly. It also has a calming effect on the mind.
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Good for Hair and Skin
Pumpkin seeds help in improving hair and skin health. It makes skin wrinkle-free and radiant. These seeds also aid in strengthening hair.
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Good for Bone Health
It is good to know that 100gm of pumpkin seeds has 262 mg of magnesium which covers 65% of your everyday magnesium needs. Magnesium is abundant in pumpkin seeds. It promotes bone growth and strength which promotes higher mineral density in bones. Magnesium deficiency also triggers low calcium levels in the blood. People with good magnesium levels show better protection against bone fracture and osteoporosis.
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Good in Pregnancy
Zinc is content that boosts immunity. It also helps in the better growth of infants. So pumpkin seeds are one of the best nutritional foods for pregnant women.
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Side Effects of Pumpkin Seeds
Overconsumption of pumpkin seeds can impact your health negatively and can cause bloating, digestive issues, stomach ache, constipation, etc.
Furthermore, since pumpkin seeds help in lowering blood sugar, excess consumption of diabetes medicine or people with hypoglycemia can be dangerous. In addition, its high-calorie quality can lead to increased weight.
Although there are no allergic reactions to pumpkin seeds, in rare cases, they can cause allergic reactions like rashes, problems in breathing, itching, headaches, etc. Consult your doctor if things get worse.
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How to Include Pumpkin Seeds in Your Diet
Pumpkin seeds are not just nutritious but an amazing snack. You can either scoop it out from a pumpkin or can buy it from a grocery store. Try not to buy any salted or added flavored pumpkin seeds that hamper their nutritional value.
Ways to include Pumpkin Seeds in your diet:
- Mix them with Smoothies
- Sprinkle these seeds over fruits and salads
- Add in oatmeal, cereals, yogurt, or granola
- Serve them in soups, pasta, chicken, etc.
- Use them while making cakes, cookies, or bread
- Eat as a stir-fried snack
- Can add them in energy bars, pancakes, or waffles
- As a Roasted snack
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Can Diabetics Eat Pumpkin Seeds?
As per pumpkin seeds’ nutritional facts, they are rich in magnesium. Pumpkin seeds are one of the best natural sources of magnesium. In the body, magnesium is essential to carry out more than 600 chemical reactions. Magnesium can lower blood sugar levels which helps Type 2 diabetic people. Type 2 diabetes or diabetes mellitus is a metabolic disorder that affects how our bodies use blood sugar or glucose. Pumpkin seeds have hypoglycemic properties that reduce the risk of high blood sugar & cholesterol and result in a lower risk of diabetes.
Pumpkin seeds also help in lowering the risk of diabetes-related complications. They are abundant in protein and healthy fats which are good for managing blood sugar levels. Since pumpkin seeds are good for diabetes management, it is advisable to add them to the diet plan for diabetes.
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Are pumpkin seeds low glycemic?
Pumpkin seeds have a low GL and low GI score of 12.
Who should avoid pumpkin seeds?
People who are allergic to pumpkin seeds, infants, pregnant or breastfeeding women, people with hypoglycemia, or people who want to lose weight should avoid pumpkin seeds.
How to make roasted pumpkin seeds?
To roast them, toss them in melted butter or olive oil then add salt and pepper. Now, bake for 30-40 minutes, or until brown and crunchy.
How can I eat pumpkin seeds?
You can eat pumpkin with smoothies, yogurt, oatmeal, salads, bakery products like cake, bread, muffins or cookies, soups, pasta, waffles, etc. It is also best tasted in a roasted form.
Are pumpkin seeds good for type 2 diabetics?
Pumpkin seeds are a rich natural source of magnesium that helps in lowering glucose levels in type 2 diabetic patients. It also contains Zinc which is very effective against type 2 diabetes. As per research, zinc regulates insulin receptors that help to control glucose levels in the body.
Can diabetic patients eat pumpkin seeds?
This is a nutritional source of vitamins, omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, minerals, fiber, and other healthy components and helps in reducing and regulating blood glucose levels so it is good for diabetics.
https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/11-benefits-of-pumpkin-seeds#TOC_TITLE_HDR_5Last Updated on by Dr. Damanjit Duggal
The information included at this site is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment by a healthcare professional. Because of unique individual needs, the reader should consult their physician to determine the appropriateness of the information for the reader’s situation.