Benefits of Raw Pumpkin Seeds for You and Your Dog
Eat raw pumpkin seeds and share some with your dog! These seeds will pump your bodies full of several vital nutrients, minerals, and vitamins. They will also act as a completely natural de-wormer and parasite remover for both you and your dog. While both raw and roasted pumpkin seeds offer incredible nutritional value, raw seeds contain higher levels of nutrients as many are destroyed during the heating and roasting process. So although we love those salty little bags of roasted pumpkin seeds, next time try raw, dried, unsalted seeds– and don’t forget to share them with your dog.
Raw pumpkin seeds contain several nutrients. They are a rich source of natural dietary fiber. Fiber is essential to overall digestive health and studies show that most Americans are fiber deficient. Pumpkin seeds also contain protein -- one ounce of seeds provides almost 9 grams of the nutrient. The fiber and protein combination of this little seed make it the perfect afternoon snack to boost energy and limit cravings.
Raw pumpkin seeds are also full of minerals. These little seeds contain calcium which is paramount in creating strong bones and teeth, avoiding PMS in women, and possibly combatting cancer. Iron, a mineral important to red blood cell function is prevalent in these seeds as well as magnesium and phosphorus. Potassium is the third most abundant mineral in the human body and, it too is found in pumpkin seeds. Zinc, which is an essential mineral for immune function, brain activity, and hormone regulation, is also in these nutritious raw seeds.
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Pumpkin seeds contain at least 10 different types of vitamins. Vitamin C, Thiamin, Riboflavin, Niacin and Vitamin B-6 and B-12 are present. They also contain vitamin E - a fat-soluble vitamin. Vitamin E keeps your cardiovascular system healthy -- it dilates your blood vessels to help lower blood pressure and protects your cells from free radicals. Raw pumpkin seeds also contain vitamin K which helps stimulate blood clot formation after tissue damage, helping your blood cells aggregate to prevent bleeding. The vitamin also helps your skin heal after injury, and contributes to bone growth and maintenance. As if that wasn’t enough vitamins for a seemingly simple seed, vitamin A and D are packed into this healthy little gem as well.
Lipids are basically good fats that the body needs. “Good” fats are monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. These fats offer protective health benefits like lowering “bad” cholesterol levels and raising “good” cholesterol levels. Examples of good fats include olive oil, canola oil, nuts – and raw pumpkin seeds, which include both types of lipids.
Raw Pumpkin Seeds and Dogs
The health benefits of these raw seeds will make your dog healthier too. The nutrients, minerals, vitamins, and lipids will boost your dog’s immune system, increase his energy, and help his eyes and coat shine. But perhaps the greatest benefit to your dog is that raw, ground pumpkin seeds act as a natural, internal parasite control. The raw seeds contain an amino acid called cucurbitin, which actually paralyzes and eliminates the worms from the digestive tract. Raw seeds should be freshly ground to avoid choking and for the dog to receive maximum benefits. Many cultures have used this practice for centuries on both humans and dogs. The feeding guideline is one teaspoon per ten pounds of body weight, once or twice a day, until all parasites are removed. Pumpkin seeds can also be regularly included in a healthy diet.
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© 2013 Robyn D Bera