Pumpkin seeds (pepita) kernel are edible kernels of fruit pumpkin. The seeds, in-fact, are concentrated sources of many health-benefiting vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and essential amino-acids such as tryptophan, and glutamate.
Crunchy, delicious pumpkin seeds are high in calories，about 559 calories per 100 g. In addition, they are packed with fiber, vitamins, minerals, and numerous health-promoting antioxidants. Their high calorific value mainly comes from protein and fats. Nonetheless, the kernels are especially rich in mono-unsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) like oleic acid (18:1) that help lower bad LDL cholesterol and increases good HDL cholesterol in the blood. Research studies suggest that the Mediterranean diet which is liberal in monounsaturated fatty acids helps to prevent coronary artery disease and stroke risk by favoring healthy blood lipid profile.
Pumpkin seeds carry good-quality protein. 100 g seeds provide 30 g or 54% of the recommended daily allowance of protein. In addition, the seeds are an excellent source of amino acid tryptophan and glutamate. Tryptophan is converted into serotonin and niacin. Serotonin is a beneficial neuro-chemical often labeled as nature’s sleeping pill. Further, tryptophan is the precursor of B-complex vitamin, niacin (60 mg of tryptophan = 1 mg niacin).
Pumpkin seeds have a good effect on killing schistosomiasis larvae, and can also degenerate and reduce the number of mature adults. It also has a certain therapeutic effect on schistosomiasis.
Pumpkin seed kernel is also an effective tapeworm repellent without toxicity and any side effects. It is suitable for the elderly and children with taeniasis and abdominal pain and fullness. It has obvious effects on patients with enterobiasis, tapeworm disease, hookworm disease, etc.
Studies have found that eating about 50 grams of pumpkin seeds every day can effectively prevent and treat prostate diseases. This is because the secretion of hormones by the prostate depends on fatty acids, and pumpkin seeds are rich in fatty acids, which can maintain good function of the prostate. The active ingredient in the herb can eliminate the swelling in the early stage of prostatitis, and also has the effect of preventing prostate cancer.
Pumpkin seeds are rich in pantothenic acid.