Health Benefits of Pumpkin Seeds

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Pumpkin seeds, popular as Pepita, are the most alkaline-forming seed. They are rich in valuable nutrients that provide potential health benefits.  They are an excellent snack to add into your diet. Eating only a small amount can provide you substantial quantity of healthy fats, magnesium and zinc.

Nutritional Facts: Pumpkin seeds are good source of Vitamin K, Vitamin E, and Vitamin B group. They are also rich in zinc, iron, copper, magnesium and phosphorus.  They contain phytosterols that have been shown to reduce levels of LDL cholesterol. Here are top reasons to add pumpkin seeds to your meals and salads.

 

Pumpkin Seeds Health Benefits

 

 High In Antioxidants

Pumpkin seeds contain carotenoids and Vitamin E, which help to reduce inflammation and protect cells from damages caused by free radicals. Pumpkin seeds have positive effects on our health and eating diet rich in antioxidants can protect you against various diseases.

 

 Best Sources of Omega-3s

Raw nuts and seeds, including pumpkin seeds are one of the best sources of Omega- fatty acids. These Omega-3s are essential for regulating our insulin levels.

 

 Have Anti-diabetic Effects

Pumpkin seeds can be beneficial for people with diabetes as it can help improve insulin and blood sugar regulation. It also prevents symptoms and complications associated with diabetes. High Magnesium in these seeds have also shown to have positive effect on diabetes.

 

Support Our Immune System

Zinc deficiency in our body can result in increases colds and flu, chronic fatigue, acne etc. Pumpkin seeds are a rich source of zinc, which is essential for boosting our immunity and preventing the risk of common infections.

 

 Heart Healthy

Pumpkin seeds are rich in magnesium, an important mineral which is required in various vital body functions such as pumping of your heat, formation of bone and relaxation of blood vessels. Studies have shown that magnesium can help in regulating blood pressure and lowering the risk of cardiovascular disorders such as sudden cardiac arrest and stroke.

 

 Promote Prostate Health

Pumpkin seeds have been known as an essential natural food for men’s health. Due to its high zinc content, it is important for maintaining prostate health. Besides natural pumpkin seeds, studies have shown that pumpkin seeds extract and oils can be beneficial in treating symptoms of enlarged prostate and problems with urination.

 

 Healthy for Post Menopausal Women

Being rich in natural phytoestrogens, pumpkin seeds have shown to be effective in increasing HDL cholesterol, decreasing blood pressure and other menopausal symptoms like hot flashes, joint pain, headaches etc.

 

 

 

Healthy Fat Foods

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Avocado

Fiber Rich Foods

Avocado can be relished on your sandwiches or serve it up in guacamole recipe. Avocados are good for your heart health and have been found to be effective in alleviating symptoms associated with osteoarthritis. Due to the presence of healthy fats, avocado helps in combating symptoms associated with arthritis. Avocado Health Benefits

Eating avocado also helps your body better in absorbing the nutrients from other foods. Half a medium avocado can serve about 115 to 160 calories.

 

Seeds

 

Pumpkin Seeds Health Benefits

Seeds including pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds or sesame seeds have “good” fats and could help in lowering bad cholesterol. Fats, which come from plants, are known to be much healthier than animal fats. Fatty cuts of meat, full fat dairy products and packaged foods contain “BAD” fats that could affect your overall health if taken in excess amount. One should avoid Trans fats and limit the levels of saturated fats.

 

Nuts

 

Nuts

Hazelnuts, walnuts, pistachios etc. contains healthy fats and are good for your heart. But just because fats are healthy doesn’t mean that you can eat as much as you want. Why you should eat pistachios?

 

Fish

 

Fish

Fish like Salmon, herring, sardines and tuna are rich sources of Omega-3 fatty acids, which is considered as a ‘good” fat. Omega-3 fatty acids enhance heart health and reduce the risk of various cardiovascular disorders. Especially as you get older, intake of Omega-3 fatty acid becomes essential because it also help keep your brain sharp. Studies have shown that fats in fish are healthy and recommend two servings of fatty fish a week. Omega -3 sources

 

Vegetables

 

Leafy Greens

All greens like spinach, kale, Brussels sprouts etc. contain omega-3 fatty acids. Our body can’t make good fats present in vegetables, so in order to have healthy fats, we need to add veggies in our diet.

 

Ground Flax seeds

 

Flaxseed

As a part of a healthy diet, addition of healthy fats is essential. They are not only good for your heart about also for your skin. Flax seeds besides providing healthy fats also have fiber which can help ease inflammation. One teaspoon of ground flax seed on your cereal or salad can provide you with good amount of healthy fats.

Besides these, Try olive oil whether you are cooking or dressing a salad. It is high in good fat. Eggs are another great source of healthy fats. Beans whether green beans, kidney beans etc, are good source of Omega- 3s.

 

 

 

How Omega-3 Helps Your Health

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Omega-3 fatty acids are healthy fats. Two crucial Omega-3s (EPA and DHA) are found in certain fish and ALA (Alpha-linolenic acid), another Omega- fatty acid, is found in various plants sources such as seeds and nuts. Our body requires these essential Omega-3s for various bodily functions. Besides aiding our body to function, they also deliver some potential health benefits.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Lower Triglycerides Levels

Omega-3s found in fish oil supplements can help lower elevated triglycerides ( blood fat) levels. High triglycerides can increase your risk of heart disease.

 

Improves Lung Function

A diet high in Omega-3s can be effective in lowering inflammation, a key symptom in asthma. It may also help in improving lung functioning.

 

Good for Baby’s Development

DHA, a form of Omega-3 fatty acids are important for neurological and visual development in infants. Some studies have shown that fish oil can also reduce symptoms of ADHD in some children and can help in improving their mental skills, like learning, remembering and thinking.

 

Positive effect on memory

Various researches have shown that Omega-3s may help protect against memory loss (dementia). It has shown to have positive effect on gradual memory loss linked to aging, but still various studies are needed to show such benefit of Omega-3s.

 

Lowers Levels of Depression

Studies have shown that eating foods with high levels of omega-3s can help lower levels of depression. Fish oil have also been found to be effective in boosting the effects of antidepressants and can help in alleviating symptoms of bipolar disorder.

 

Alleviates Joint Pain and Stiffness

Fish oil supplements can help curb symptoms associated with Rheumatoid arthritis such as joint pain and stiffness. It also boosts the effectiveness of anti-inflammatory drugs and help in reducing the inflammation of joints.

 

Sources of Omega-3s

Rather than supplements, try to get Omega-3 fatty acids from foods. Rich sources of Omega-3s are fish (Tuna, Sardines, Herring, Salmon, etc.), Walnuts, Flaxseed and flaxseed Oil, Canola Oil and Soybean and Soybean Oil. Make sure you eat these Omega-3 sources in moderation.

 

Vitamin Essentials for Women

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To maintain health and prevent health problems related to vitamins and minerals deficiency, we need to make sure to add variety of vitamins and minerals  in our diet or if necessary, take vitamin and minerals supplements. Here are top Vitamin Essentials for women

1. Multivitamins

 

Multivitamins are an essential supplement to keep you healthy. Every vitamin performs a specific function in our body. Make sure that your multivitamins contain Vitamin A, C, D, E and K and B complex and minerals like potassium, zinc and iodine.  Avoid mega-vitamins as they may contain high levels of vitamins and minerals, which could be dangerous to your health. Here are the top Vitamin Essential for women

  •  Vitamin A

If you want to maintain overall health of your body including good vision, start taking vitamin A rich food. There are two types of vitamin A: Preformed Vitamin A (found in meat, poultry and dairy products) and Pro- vitamin A (Found in orange and yellow fruits and vegetables).

  • Vitamin C

Immunity booster and speed up growth and repairing process in the body. Broccoli, grapefruits, oranges, green and red peppers, potatoes, sprouts, tomatoes.

  • Vitamin E

Vitamin E anti aging property and helps in slowing down age-related changes in your body and also good for skin and hair. Sources: almonds, peanut butter, cod liver oil, sunflower seeds.

  • Vitamin K

An important vitamin for strong bones and also helps in reducing heart diseases. Source: Green Leafy veggies, fish oil, soybean oil.

  • Vitamin B Complex

All forms of Vitamin B helps in making energy from the food we eat and also helps in forming Red blood cells. Sources are fish, poultry, eggs, green vegetables, beans, peas. Not getting enough of vitamins can cause diseases, for example lack of B12 or B6 can cause anemia.

2.  Vitamin D

Vitamin D

Vitamin D helps in the absorption and utilization of calcium, which is a main building blocks of bone. To prevent Vitamin D deficiency, sun exposure is necessary.

This Vitamin also protects against osteoporosis and bone injury and help reduces the risk of multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis and various types of cancer. One can get Vitamin D from egg yolks, saltwater fish, milk, cereals and Vitamin D supplements. Vitamin D Daily requirement

3.  Calcium with Magnesium

Calcium and Magnesium are essentials minerals required by our body. Calcium helps in keeping our bones and teeth healthy and strong, promote proper functioning of our blood vessels and nervous systems.  Vitamin D and magnesium are essential to help the body in calcium absorption and utilization.

Magnesium also prevents calcium’s potentially constipating effects. Natural foods rich in Magnesium and Calcium

4.  Omega-3 Fatty acids

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-3 fatty acids are good for your heart and brain health. It is a healthy fatty acid which prevents the formation of plaque in your arteries and lowers the levels of bad cholesterol in the blood. It also lubricates your joints. Fish oil and some plant and nut oils are rich in Omega-3s.  Daily requirement of Omega-3

5. Folic Acid (Vitamin B9)

Folic acid is essential for women during pregnancy. It helps protect against neural tube defects in babies. It is also important for women who are not pregnant, as folic acid is required in the formation of red blood cells. There are various vegetables and grains which are rich source of folic acid. Daily Dosage of Folic Acid

 

 

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