Pumpkin Seeds. No, Seriously.

 “When you think “Pumpkin Seed”, what comes most immediately to mind? If you’re like most people, what comes to mind is reaching your hand into the hole at the top of big orange gourd and grabbing a fistful of disgusting muck. What’s not to like?

Pumpkin seeds—and the unnervingly stringy stuff they’re suspended in—are the junk you need to yank out of the pumpkin before you can make either a jack o’ lantern or pumpkin pie. Well, there is more to the pumpkin seed than a slimed forearm.

The nondescript pumpkin seed packs a powerful punch. Comprised of about 60% protein, this vibrant little ovoid is jammed with zinc, manganese, magnesium, copper, phosphorous, potassium, and iron. “What about molybdenum”, you ask. Yes, the pumpkin seed has all the molybdenum you seek, so those free radicals that would otherwise be messing with your healthy cells are going to get the “Molybdenum Beatdown”, to use the biochemical terminology. Your cells thank you.

Pumpkin seeds help metabolize toxins, giving them the bum’s rush through the kidneys and out, and they even help metabolize drugs that enter the system, seeing to it that any unused pharma is pulled out of the ingestion line and directed to the urinary express.

And remember learning that it’s the Tryptophan in Thanksgiving turkey that causes you to fall asleep with your face in the mashed potatoes? Well, because pumpkin seeds are L-Tryptophan-rich, consumption of whole pumpkin seeds can be a partial insomnia solution, not to mention a mediator of some symptoms of menopause—the headaches, hot flashes, and joint pain; and the mild depression. Your heart? A couple of grams of the alpha-linolenic acid present in pumpkin seeds has been shown to have a positive push-back effect on coronary heart disease.  And research continues in the effectiveness of certain pumpkin seed extracts in the battle against melanomas.

So the next time you are up to your elbow in pumpkin innards, remember the pure healing power of the awful gunk you’re grasping in there. And if that doesn’t help, just wince and gag a little. You know the drill.


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