If you want to support your family’s overall health and wellness, the first thing you can do is to always include healthy snacks in your kid’s lunch box. One of the best snacks that you can consider would be the pumpkin seeds. They’re a good source of vitamins and minerals– which are very important for your family’s short term and long term health.
Why Include Pumpkin Seeds in Your Diet
– Boosts the Immune System
Since pumpkin seeds have plenty of zinc– you could have the assurance that it would boost your immune system. Lack of it could leave the body vulnerable and more prone to infections.
– Antioxidant Support
Despite the fact that antioxidant nutrients are commonly present in WHFoods, the diversity of antioxidants present in pumpkin seeds makes them unique when it comes to providing antioxidant support. Pumpkin seeds contain vitamins, such as Vitamin E, but aside from that, they also contain gamma-tocopherol, alpha-tocopherol, delta-tocopherol, and the like.
– Good for the Eyes
Vitamin E, vitamin A, lutein, beta-carotene, and zeaxanthin are just some of the most important compounds that promote better eye health. Pumpkin seeds have these nutrients and so much more.
– Promotes Healthy Sleep
L-tryptophan and Tryptophan are important, because they encourage healthy sleep, which is essential for supporting overall mental health. The body converts typtophan into serotonin, and this hormone is vital for supporting healthy sleep periods, as well as improving the mood.
Also, considering the fact that pumpkin seeds have a delicious nutty crunch, this makes them a perfect topping for a healthy dessert, such as fruit salad.
Now that you know the benefits you can enjoy from consuming pumpkin seeds, here’s one of the best pumpkin seed recipes for you to try. No other than pumpkin seed pesto.
Pumpkin Seed Pesto
This thick, aromatic pumpkin seed pesto that has roasted pumpkin seeds as one of its main ingredients, combined with garlic, olive oil, and cilantro is definitely a must try recipe. You could use this pesto sauce as a sandwich spread, or toss with hot pasta, or you could also consider serving it over steamed or roasted vegetables.
– 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
– ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
– 2 cups of unsalted pumpkin seeds
– 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice
– 1 cup of fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
– 3 cloves of garlic
1. Toss pumpkin seeds with 2 tablespoons of salt and oil, then combine these in a single layer baking sheet. Roast in a preheated 375 F oven until the seeds eventually get fragrant and puffed. Set it aside and allow it to cool for 10-15 minutes.
2. In a food processor, combine lemon juice, ¼ cup of water, cilantro, and 4 tablespoons of oil. Pulse until it turns into a coarse paste and season with salt and pepper. Cover until ready to use.
The Best Way to Consume Pumpkin Seeds
Ideally, pumpkin seeds should be eaten raw if you want to preserve the healthy fats. During purchase, make sure that these seeds are smelling fresh, and as much as possible, opt for the organic variation to ensure that they’re free from pesticides.