Seeds of all varieties—from chia and flax to sesame and sunflower—seem to be popping up everywhere these days. Learn the nutrition basics of flavorful seeds with ideas for how to incorporate into your diet. By: Patricia Bannan, MS, RD
Photo: Lee Harrelson
The pumpkin plant, along with its seeds, has been used in the traditional medicine of many countries, including India and Mexico. Pumpkin seeds promote good prostate health and offer anti-inflammatory and cholesterol-lowering benefits. Subtly sweet and nutty with a somewhat chewy texture, pumpkin seeds are lower in fat than other seeds and offer essential minerals like iron, magnesium, and potassium. Pumpkin seeds also contain protective compounds called phytosterols, which likely contribute to their known prostate and heart health benefits. While available year round, they are freshest in the fall when pumpkins are in season.
How to eat: Enjoy pumpkin seeds on top of salads or cereal, add to your favorite baked goods, or eat a handful for a nutritious and tasty snack.