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Pumpkin - Nature's Nutrient Rich Food

By HERWriter
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Halloween is upon us and that means lots of pumpkins for decorative purposes and to put in all of your favorite recipes. But, did you know that pumpkin is one of the most nutrient rich foods available? There are so many health and disease-fighting benefits. Pumpkin is loaded with fiber, potassium, magnesium, vitamin C and vitamin E. It also contains both alpha-carotene and beta-carotene both of which help with immunity and vision.

So before you throw out the insides of this fabulous food, consider the many, versatile ways you can use this member of the squash family. In fact, your family can have healthy snacks from sunrise to sunset. Here are some wonderful pumpkin recipes from my Fitness Answer Plan:

• 1 packet of Regular Oatmeal
• ¼ cup of canned Pure Pumpkin or pureed pumpkin
• 1 scoop of Vanilla Whey Protein
• 1 cup of Water
• Dash of Nutmeg
• Dash of Cinnamon
• 1 tbsp. of chopped pecans
• 1 packet of Stevia Sweetner

Mix all ingredients except pecans in large microwave safe bowl. Microwave for one minute on high. Sprinkle with pecans and a splash of milk.

½ cup of sesame sticks
¼ cup cashews
¼ cup of unsalted peanuts
¼ cup of ready to eat pumpkin seeds
¼ cup of sunflower kernels

Makes 6 servings - Serving Size – ½ cup

(Mix all ingredients together and serve. I usually portion this out and keep in handy baggies.)

• ½ pkg. of sugar free vanilla pudding
• 1 cup of skim milk
• 2 tbsp. of canned pumpkin or pureed pumpkin
• 1 scoop of vanilla whey protein powder
• 2 tbsp. of soft whipped cream cheese
• 4 tbsp. of light whipped topping
• 4 tbsp. of graham cracker crumbs
• 2 packets of sugar substitute

Mix pudding, milk, pumpkin and whey, and 1 packet of sugar substitute, set aside. In separate bowl, mix cream cheese, whipped topping and 1 packet of sugar substitute. Fill two dessert cups with alternating layers of pudding mixture, graham cracker crumbs and cheese mixture. Serves 2

Joanne Sgro is a Television Fitness Expert, Certified Personal Trainer and Sport Nutritionist.

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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