Whether your fall dreams are filled with pumpkin spice lattes, pumpkin pie, or yummy pumpkin bread, muffins, or cookies, chances are it brings a warm cozy feeling over you just thinking of it. Turns out there is more to that feeling than just a love of pumpkin or fall. It’s called tryptophan. Yes, the same amino acid we’ve all come to associate with the Thanksgiving turkey that makes us so sleepy is also found in pumpkins! What’s even better is that the tryptophan in pumpkin seed oil has been linked to reducing anxiety. How great is that?!
Pumpkin is also a terrific low calorie vegetable that is rich in fiber and anti-oxidants. It has high amounts of vitamins A, C, and E. The natural flavonoids in pumpkin help the process the vitamin A for healthy eyesight and skin. It’s a good source of folates, niacin, vitamin B6 for energy, and thiamin. Bananas aren’t the only place to get potassium, pumpkins are great sources too. Other minerals you may not think of pumpkin for are copper, calcium and phosphorous. Pumpkin is often times recommended to help control cholesterol and weight.
So when life has you a bit frayed, go ahead and treat yourself to something delicious and relaxing without any side effects the next morning 😉
Pumpkin Banana Protein Smoothie
1/2 c pumpkin puree
1/2 medium banana
1 scoop vanilla protein powder (use raw protein to keep the smoothie raw)
1 c almond milk
1 c ice
1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
honey or agave (optional)
dash of cinnamon