http://food.yahoo.com/blog/beautyeats/18561/pumpkins-not-just-for-pie-anymore1. It gives your immune system a pre-flu season boost. A ½ cup serving of pumpkin delivers a war chest of immune-boosting vitamins and nutrients, including alpha and beta-carotene, vitamin C, iron, and enough vitamin A to last you three days!
2. It fills you up for very few calories. A ½ cup of Libby's canned 100% pumpkin puree packs in 5g of stomach-satisfying fiber (20% of your daily intake) for only 40 calories. By comparison, a slice of whole-wheat bread has 2g of fiber and costs you 70 calories.
3. It's got the goods to protect your vision. Pumpkin delivers a duo of sight-saving carotenoid antioxidants (lutein and beta-cryptoxanthin) that reduce the risk of age-related cataracts and sight-stealing macular degeneration.
4. It keeps your body humming. Pumpkin is a great source of potassium, which keeps your cells, nerves, and muscles running smoothly. Healthy potassium levels also help keep blood pressure in check and can lower the odds of stroke and heart disease.
5. It could cut your cancer risk. A diet high in carotenoids can lower the risk of breast cancer, and beta-cryptoxanthin, a carotenoid that's particularly plentiful in pumpkin, may help protect against lung cancer. Aim to get your beta-carotene from foods like pumpkin, since supplements don't offer the same cancer protection.
6. It gives your bones a little extra love. You'll also pick up a little extra bone-building calcium with each serving. Plus beta-cryptoxanthin defends against joint-destroying rheumatoid arthritis.
P.S. Wondering about canned versus fresh pumpkin? Canned is a little less sweet but, surprisingly, it's a little more nutritious. It has more fiber, beta-carotene, potassium, iron, and folate than fresh. It also wins huge points for convenience! And all that filling fiber pays off in more ways than appetite control: Eating a high-fiber diet can make your RealAge up to 3.5 years younger.
And by the way, pumpkin seeds are an excellent source of nutrition as well!
pumpkin seed info.: http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=82