This is a fantastic way to use up this nutritious fruited vegetables and their seeds and something a little bit different from the usual pumpkin soup.
Pumpkin is rich in alpha and beta carotenes which are powerful phytonutrients shown to help prevent certain cancers, protect against type 2 diabetes, heart disease and inflammation. The carotenes are converted to vitamin A by the body which is essential for good eye health and vision. They are fat soluble so should be eaten with a little fat to help absorb the nutrients. Pumpkins are also rich in some B vitamins as well as vitamin C and E. These vitamins have an important role in maintaining healthy skin and protecting against sun damage.
Pumpkin seeds are nutritional powerhouses which are rich in protein, zinc (an antioxidant mineral which boosts the immune system), iron (important for healthy blood cells and energy levels), omega 3 fatty acids, antioxidants, magnesium, selenium, calcium and many other nutrients . They also contain heart healthy polyunsaturated fatty acids and can benefit your heart, liver and immune system as well as helping to fight the onset of diabetes. They also contain tryptophan; an amino acid which is needed by the body to produce serotonin. This brain chemical helps regulate mood, appetite, digestion, sleep and memory. Low levels are linked to depression
Brown rice retains the bran layer and cereal germ which offers most of the nutrients; insoluble fibre, vitamin B1, magnesium and phosphorous amongst others. Starchy complex carbohydrates help to boost levels of serotonin in the brain which helps to regulate sleep and mood. Magnesium also helps to reduce stress and relaxes muscles (including the lungs so it may help to relieve the symptoms of asthma).