Pumpkin seeds are a really small but popular snack option for many people. They are not only delicious but also provide you with a lot of nutrients, minerals, and vitamins in a relatively small portion.
But, as you may know, most seeds are very high in fat, which might make them bad for a diet aimed at weight loss.
So, should you eat pumpkin seeds when trying to lose weight? Are they fattening?
Table of Contents
Are pumpkin seeds fattening?
Pumpkin seeds contain quite a number of calories, but eating them in moderation might actually contribute to healthy weight loss. They’re rich in various nutrients, including fiber and some protein, that all contribute to healthy weight loss.
Eating pumpkin seeds may also help you stay full after eating, preventing overeating and additional weight gain.
How many calories are in pumpkin seeds?
A one-ounce serving of pumpkin seeds contains around 153 calories. While this is a lot for such a small serving, pumpkin seeds are rich in fiber and protein, helping you stay full after eating.
Because of that, even this small portion is worth the calories, as it provides you with essential nutrients that can keep any additional calories away.
It’s also important to note that a one-ounce serving of pumpkin seeds is actually a lot of seeds – around 140.
So, while you snack, you’re more likely to eat less than that, thus reducing how many calories you’re taking in from them.
It might also be best to throw some pumpkin seeds into your dishes, such as salads or smoothies, which can further limit the calories.
Are pumpkin seeds good for you?
Aside from containing a great number of healthy fats, protein, and fiber, pumpkin seeds contain a lot of essential minerals.
For example, this type of seed is especially high in magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, manganese, and copper.
These nutrients help improve your overall health, but magnesium and phosphorus, in particular, are very good for the health of your bones and teeth.
Many people also suffer from mineral deficiencies these days, so adding some pumpkin seeds to your diet can help solve this problem.
Pumpkin seeds are also high in antioxidants, essential plant compounds that help flush out free radicals from your body.
This prevents oxidative stress and damage to your cells, reducing the risk of several chronic conditions, such as diabetes, cancer, and heart disease.
The antioxidants found in pumpkin seed and pumpkin oil also help reduce inflammation in your body, which is a factor in other serious health conditions.
Pumpkin seeds are also an excellent source of iron, providing you with 23% of your daily recommended need for this mineral in a single one-ounce serving.
Iron is important for preserving various bodily functions, such as energy and focus, gastrointestinal processes, the immune system, and temperature regulation.
In addition, getting enough iron can help prevent as well as treat anemia by aiding in the production of hemoglobin and red blood cells that carry oxygen throughout your body.
Several studies also show that eating pumpkin seeds may improve the health of the prostate and bladder.
Eating pumpkin seeds has been shown to improve urinary function and even help treat various bladder issues and reduce their symptoms.
Experts believe that it’s due to the minerals working as electrolytes and powerful plant compounds found in pumpkin and pumpkin seeds.
So, if you tend to experience bladder issues, try adding pumpkin seeds to your diet to get some of the health benefits they provide.
Due to the high antioxidant content of pumpkin seeds, eating them can help improve the health of your heart.
This is because the compounds found in pumpkin seeds help lower ‘bad’ cholesterol levels and increase the levels of ‘good’ cholesterol in your body.
This reduces the risk of various cardiovascular issues, including high blood pressure, heart attacks, and heart disease.
In addition, the magnesium, zinc, and fatty acid found in pumpkin seeds also contribute to a healthy heart.
Should you eat pumpkin seeds when trying to lose weight?
Pumpkin seeds are rather calories, but they still contain some important nutrients that are linked to weight loss.
Firstly, a single serving provides you with a decent amount of fiber, around 1.2 g. Fiber helps you feel full after eating, and it also feeds the ‘good’ gut bacteria in your stomach.
This helps keep your digestive system healthy, improving your metabolism and preventing weight gain.
What’s more, pumpkin seeds contain quite a lot of unsaturated fatty acids. This type of fat helps fill you up while you eat, curbing your appetite and preventing you from consuming too many calories.
Fat is also more satisfying than carbohydrates and can reduce the frequency of your meals and how much you snack in between them.
So, eating foods with higher fat content and lower carb content, like pumpkin seeds, can help with weight management.
Another way in which eating pumpkin seeds can help you lose weight is the protein they contain.
A single serving of pumpkin seeds provides you with around 14% of your daily recommended need for this macronutrient, which is an impressive amount.
Protein can help prevent muscle loss when you’re dieting and limiting calories. It also helps you feel fuller for longer as compared to carbohydrates.
So, including protein-rich foods on a weight-loss diet is really important.
To incorporate pumpkin seeds on a weight loss-friendly diet, try either snacking on them in between meals, adding them to salads or smoothies, or even adding them to larger dishes for that extra crunchiness.
Also, make sure to choose raw, unsalted pumpkin seeds to avoid taking in too much sodium. Too much of this mineral in your diet can prevent effective weight loss and increase your risk of high blood pressure and strokes.
Pumpkin seeds are relatively high in calories, which means you should moderate your intake of them if you’re trying to lose weight.
On the other hand, they contain lots of crucial nutrients that can contribute to healthy weight loss, prevent muscle loss, and keep your energy levels up.
So, if you’re looking to shed some pounds, try including some pumpkin seeds in your diet.